After a year with few new restaurants in Houston due to pandemic-related complications and restrictions, the pace of openings has returned to normal – and “normal” means: “Don’t blink or you’ll miss something”. This edition of the hit list does not only contain current openings such as YELO and KP’s kitchenbut also catches up on a few places that opened late last year, like 93 Til and Tiny champions. Readers who shy away from eating in 2020 will find there are plenty of valuable new experiences to be had – and even more so when the food service scene revs up again.
The Gary Martinez at 93 Til. Courtesy photo.
93 Til, 1601 West Main: Housed in the former Night Heron (and in front of it Lowbrow) room, 93 Til mixes music, light bites and some main courses with plenty of indoor and outdoor seating. Owners, Cooks, and Native California Americans Gary Ly and Lung Ly (not related) took inspiration for the name from a local band in Oakland.
A few must-try dishes on the current menu are: Potato Chip Gnocchi with buttermilk soubise (a French white sauce made from onion puree), crispy potatoes, chives and parmesan; Chicken liver mousse with fennel jam and smoked trout roe served with toast and the Sea bass Entré with sauce Vierge (another French sauce commonly made from olive oil, lemon juice, chopped tomatoes, and chopped basil) and asparagus relish.
On the cocktail side, there are innovative options like that Gary Martinez with Zephyr Gin, Dolin Blanc Vermouth, Pierre Ferrand Dry Curaçao and Orange Bitter and Good morning starry sky with St. George Spiced Pear Liqueur, Pierre Ferrand Cognac, star anise, black tea, five-spice bitter, ginger beer and lime are definitely worth a sip on the terrace.
A cauliflower puree with garlic and caviar at degust. Photo by Kat Ambrose Photography.
Enjoyment / fun, 7202 Long dot: boss Brandon Silva and bar manager Steven Salazar from The Kirby Group (to which Wooster’s Garden and Holman Draft Hall belong) opened the tasting restaurant with tasting menu and the neighboring bar Diversión in mid-January. Every concept is suitable as a destination, with Diversión offering a changing cocktail menu and Degust taking up influences from Spanish, Mexican and southern cuisine with Japanese cooking techniques. The result is quite interesting. The current menu has two options: the Green pill for vegetarians and Purple pill for meat lovers. Both menus contain recurring elements such as items Meyer lemon nori, with horseradish and Meyer lemon aperitif and Kohlrabi with peas and carrots. Guests can also enhance the meal, including ossetra caviar, bluefin tuna, fresh black truffles, and foie gras. Reservations are strongly recommended.
Lance Fegen’s drinks menu keeps things fresh with seasonal cocktails like The George.
Sweep it, 1050 mare wood: Lance sweeping and his restaurant group FEED TX have rebuilt the former Liberty Kitchen & Oyster in the chef’s first self-titled restaurant. Fegen’s serves southern Italian dishes that are also known American favorites. Hotplates included The meatballs with tomato sauce, pecorino and crusty bread and the Linguine & mussel sauce in red or white. The menu also features Sicilian pizza with well-known staple foods such as margherita and characteristic combinations such as Purple Rain with fried aubergine, fresh ricotta, tomato sauce, basil and Sicilian olive oil. Those who like it meatier can choose from a selection of steaks, chicken or a love-it-or-hate-it dish: veal liver and onions. On the bar side, Nicole Mezawhose experience includes formerly at Weights + Measures, and Julep has a cocktail list of classics like the Sazerac and new creations like the. curated stay with bourbon, lemon juice, passion fruit and grapefruit bitter.
The crispy cauliflower at KP’s Kitchen. Courtesy photo.
KP’s kitchen, 700 city and country roads: Kerry Pauly has worked with veteran Houston restaurateur Benjy Levit from Local Foods, The Classic (closed) and the former Benjy’s (now another Local Foods location) for years. Pauly now has his own restaurant. KP’s Kitchen is located in the former Smashburger location in the Town & Country Village shopping center. The neighborhood bistro serves American classics like that KP burger, with freshly minced beef, smoked bacon and American cheese with homemade fries and starters like that 12 hour baby back ribs with chilli-citrus glaze. Currently, KP’s is BYOB, and there is even a recommendation section on the menu to help you pair your meal with the beer or wine you bring with you.
Quail at Littlefoot, the pop-up at Theodore Rex, with fennel, fennel pollen and green chartreuse. Courtesy photo.
Small foot, 1302 Nance: Time is running out to enjoy this special pop-up at Theodore Rex with Head Chef and James Beard Award-nominated Rising Star Chef Kaitlin streets. The menu is a five-course tour de force with two menu options: the Tasting menu with vegetables, fish and meat and the Vegetable menu. Both rely on ingredients produced in Texas. A few selected dishes from each menu to look forward to: Cylindra beets with braised green fondant, garlic and capers, Farro porridge with farro verde and onion brulee and Creme pâtissiere flavored with sauternes.
Littlefoot’s last few days reservations are likely going to be quickly filled so act now if you want to attend. For those who missed Chef Yu’s menu for Theodore Rex, the restaurant is officially returning on May 20th.
The tuna Ventresca in March. Photo by Abbie Arnold.
March, 1624 Westheimer: One last store has long been planned for the Goodnight Hospitality business corner at the intersection of Küster and Westheimer – and it debuted on the last day of the month of the same name. March finally opened alongside Rosie Cannonball and Montrose Cheese & Wine after giving guests a taste of what to expect as a pop-up lounge in 2020. Now fully open as a cook / co-owner Felipe Riccios Restaurant with tasting menu, the first menu in March focuses on the Berber coast through courts like Tuna Ventresca and Fifth quarter tagine – an interpretation of the Moroccan slow-cooked, hearty stew.
Thanks to the well-developed wine cellar of General Manager / Sommelier Mark Sayre, there are over 11,000 bottles to choose from. These come from all over the world, and March is particularly focused on small, independent producers. The cocktail program from Alex Negranza (formerly Tongue-Cut Sparrow and Anvil Bar & Refuge) offers unique, complex cocktails with deceptively simple names like artichoke, made with calvados, cinnamon, fig and orgeat, and thymewho combines tequila with vermouth, bitter and celery.
The forbidden eggs in the Nash. Photo by Kirsten Gilliam.
The Nash, 1111 rusks: This downtown restaurant in the Texaco building opened earlier this year. It has a stunning, dog-friendly outdoor area, a floor-to-ceiling bar, and an open kitchen centered around a wood-burning pizza oven. cook Omar Pereney, best known for his work as the head chef of the now-closed site sand when he was just 21 years old, he developed The Nash’s menu. Offering dinner and happy hour for the time being (with brunch and lunch for the coming weeks as more downtown shops return to the new normal), some standout snacks and entrees include the Prohibited eggs Crispy, sweet and hot served with tamarind sweet chili sauce, coriander, Thai basil and crispy shallots, Korean Bacon Bao with Gochujang BBQ sauce, cucumber, pickled onions, peanuts, coriander. The Cauliflower paneer curry Starter with peas, jasmine rice, seasoned tomato sauce, garlic flatbread is definitely worth a visit.
Since every good terrace needs a good cocktail, give it a try Red Book Journal with vodka, lime, prickly pear syrup and marigold liqueur.
Fried chicken in whey with fresh herbs, fried garlic and chillies at Tiny Champions. Courtesy photo.
Tiny champions, 2617 McKinney: Chef’s Second Endeavor Jason Vaughan and Sean Jensen of Nancy’s hustle and bustle Thanks to the bread and confectioner’s dough-making skills, his pizzas and pastas got a stir early on Julia Doran, but that’s not all the restaurant offers. In addition to the fried chicken in whey pictured above, the menu also offers fried clams with saffron and lemon aioli, and Smoky fried mozzarella balls with marinara. Bridget Paliwoda, formerly owned by Oxheart and The Annie, takes care of the wine list so you know you can’t go wrong there. By the way: Tiny Champions also makes its own desserts, including Sesame cake, Chocolate Angostura “Salami” and ice cream, are among the current flavors Malt with hazelnut praline and Toasted almond. Get a free pinch of Maldon salt upon request, or pay $ 2 for a luxurious topping of Pedro Ximenez sherry, roasted meringue, cold brew coffee, or something else.
Crab Rangoon at Yelo. Photo by Kimberly-Park.
YELO, 23119 Colonial Avenue, Katy: Guests inside loop 610 got a quick taste of yelo while it operated as part of the Phat Eatery ghost kitchen at Blodgett Food Hall. Made operational issues and customer service limitations under host ghost kitchen ownership guidelines Alex Au-Yeung decide it wouldn’t work. The good news is that Yelo is under the two owners, Au-Yeung and Cuc Lamwho established their reputation with private dinners via ChefsFeed, a pop-up chef and briefly as the driving force of the short-lived SING restaurant, is now at his permanent home next to Au-Yeung’s Malaysian restaurant Phat Eatery. This means that the sensational bánh mì is available every day, including the char siu miu mai Cited Houston Chronicle restaurant reviewer Alison Cook as 2020’s favorite dish. Other things not to sleep on: Lam is excellent Crab Rangoon, Drink specialties included Pandan Iced Latte and freshly squeezed juices like that Green goddess with celery, cucumber, green apple, pear and lemon.
Correction note: We did not initially identify the correct Wine Director for Tiny Champions, Bridget Paliwoda, and we apologize for the mistake. – Ed.
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