California churros roll to Houston and the cool new bar within the East Finish

On this week’s episode of What’s Eric Eating, co-host Linda Salinas talks to CultureMap’s Food Editor Eric Sandler about the week’s news and recent meals at two new bars and restaurants.

On the week’s news, Sandler and Salinas begin their conversation by discussing Hotel Granduca’s announcement that Ristorante Cavour has been renamed Alba Ristorante. Salinas notes that Houstonians typically shy away from hotel restaurants, but that an upscale dining concept – complete with a champagne bar – could be a welcome addition to the Galleria area.

From there, they discuss the opening of The Loop, a California churro concept. Sandler observes that churros seem to have a moment as they are on the menu at new establishments like Homestead and Night Shift. That leads to some jokes about favorite churros that both hosts enjoyed.

The Restaurants of the Week segment begins with a chat about Reikina, Chef Thomas Stacy’s tasting menu concept that recently opened at CityCentre. They find that their roots as a dinner party remain in elements like communal seating and a breathing exercise, but ultimately they decide they enjoyed the food and the strangers they met while eating.

This week’s episode ends with a raves for Night Shift, the exciting new cocktail bar that recently opened in the East End. Salinas, a beverage advisor who has worked in some of Houston’s best bars, praised the bar’s execution.

“I love what they do. Their food is really good. The design is wonderful. It’s comfortable,” she says. “The cocktails range from a little eccentric … but overall the menu is inviting. I would take my non-cocktail friends there.”

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