In the tumultuous world of Houston restaurants, one year's best restaurant becomes another year's shutter. Such is the case with Pax Americana. In 2016, the Montrose restaurant won the CultureMap Tastemaker Award for Restaurant of the Year, but it will close after service on Saturday, January 12.
Pax owner Dan Zimmerman provided CultureMap with the following statement:
Houston, the time has come to close Pax Americana and wish the team well on new projects. We are thankful first and foremost to the Montrose neighborhood and our guests for their support over the years. The adventure wouldn’t have been possible without our dedicated staff, farmers, ranchers, fisherman, and suppliers for the commitment to providing wonderful service and products. We remain thankful for all of the positive accolades received by the local media during our tenure. Our last day of service will be January 12th, we apologize for the short notice, we opted to allow our staff to find new roles and spend much deserved time with their families.
When it opened in the summer of 2014, Pax Americana quickly emerged as a favorite among Houston's most-passionate diners. The combination of chef Adam Dorris' innovative cuisine and sommelier Shepard Ross' high-energy presence made the restaurant a must-visit dining destination. Even when Dorris left to open Presidio, rising star chef Martha de Leon maintained Pax's commitment to utilizing high-quality, locally-sourced ingredients.
When de Leon departed in early 2018 to move to Seattle with her husband, the restaurant tried to chart a less ambitious path under the direction of chef Mark Zeringer (formerly of Hunky Dory), but it had lost the magic that made it special. Still, it will be missed by those who remember those early days when it was among Houston's best restaurants.