Richard Rosendale, the superstar chef whose flagship restaurant set Columbus on an innovative culinary path, is leaving central Ohio.

Richard Rosendale, the superstar chef whose flagship restaurant set Columbus on an innovative culinary path, is leaving central Ohio.

Rosendale, 33, confirmed Friday that in seven weeks he will head back to the Tavern Room Restaurant at the Greenbrier Resort in White Sulphur Springs, W.Va., where he spent part of his career.

He said his two Short North restaurants -- Rosendales Modern Bistro and Details -- will remain open for the time being.

Some details were sketchy, as Rosendale was only available by e-mail and didn't respond to certain questions.

The news had some local restaurant observers feeling disappointed at a time when upscale dining has taken a serious hit. Earlier this year, the fine-dining destination Handke's Cuisine, under new ownership since last year, closed after nearly 20 years in business.

Bill Glover, chef and owner of Sage in the University District, said that as a frequent guest at Rosendales, he is sorry to see the chef leave.

"That's unfortunate for Columbus dining," Glover said. "And I think we will lose a very talented individual who has brought something new and exciting to Columbus."

Local developer Bill Dargusch of Metropolitan Partners said Columbus is still a very good market for upscale fare, but this "is an extraordinary time."

"In this particular climate, white tablecloth restaurants are under pressure like they never have been before, so this is an exceedingly hard time," he said. "So I would say I'm not surprised" by Rosendale's decision.

Rosendale built a concrete resume, traversing the globe and racking up a large collection of culinary awards. As the economy dragged down upscale dining, Rosendale was forced to recast the restaurant with a more casual theme and affordable pricing structure. Before that, he opened the small-plates Details, which also had a casual format. Haute cuisine was available at Rosendales Upstairs, a second-floor concept.