David Keck and his partners in Goodnight Hospitality are finally ready to talk about the "hole in the ground" next to Goodnight's Charlie's. Keck, along with partners chef Felipe Riccio and local businessman Peter McCarthy, unveiled an ambitious plan to open three new concepts directly in front of their smash hit Montrose honky tonk.
Slated to open in 2019, they are as follows:
Montrose Cheese and Wine: a retail shop that will feature a rotating selection of 12 to 15 cheeses along with a selection of 75 wines focused on (but not limited to) organic, biodynamic, and natural production, In addition, the 760-square-foot shop will also feature gifts, accessories, and wine-related tools.
Rosie Cannonball: a casual, European-inspired restaurant with a wood-burning grill and oven that will serve pizzas, breads, and a wine list centered around "an expansive list of affordable and delicious wines."
While those both will be welcome additions to the neighborhood, the highlight is a fine dining restaurant called March. The 28-seat, Mediterranean-inspired restaurant will leverage both Keck's extensive knowledge of wine as well as Riccio's work at some of the world's greatest restaurants, including Blue Hill at Stone Barns and Osteria Francescana.
“I cooked in Europe for two years, which helped me understand that a restaurant can be more than a dining experience,” said Riccio in a statement. “It can be emotional, educational, inspiring. Fine dining is more relevant now than ever because it’s a perfect combination of thoughtful attention to detail, constant drive for excellence and hospitality—making a guest feel welcome.”
Keck has been quietly assembling March's wine list for the last two years, which has allowed the Master Sommelier to create a cellar from a wide range of producers and include vintages that haven't been poured in Houston before. In addition, the staff will consist of "industry professionals with extensive wine experience."
Opening three concepts in close proximity to each other might seem like a problem, but McCarthy explains the reason for the decision.
“We love how eclectic and vibrant the neighborhood already is, and we believe the surrounding restaurant and bar scene is representative of the Houston culinary scene at large." McCarthy added. "We can only aspire that our three concepts add to that. That vibrancy, coupled with the added efficiencies of our concepts and retail anchor Biscuit Home in close proximity, made for an easy decision.”
For all Keck's talk about his affection for two-stepping and shots of whiskey, he and Riccio always seemed a little overqualified to oversee the operations at Goodnight Charlie's. This announcement allows the duo to unleash the full range of their talents, which should make Houston an even better place to eat and drink. The competition for the best new restaurant of 2019 starts now.