Foodie News

Hot Houston spot makes America's Best New Restaurants Top 10 — H-Town named Texas' best food city

Hot Houston spot makes America's Best New Restaurants Top 10 — H-Town named Texas' best food city

Oxheart, Houston, August 2012, this, sign, closeup
Photo by Barbara Kuntz
Oxheart, Justin Yu, Karen Man
Oxheart's Justin Yu and Karen Man Courtesy of Paul Sedillo Photography
Oxheart, restaurant, interior
The dining room Courtesy of Paul Sedillo Photography
Oxheart, Houston, August 2012, this, exterior, patio
Oxheart, located at 1302 Nance in the Warehouse District Photo by Barbara Kuntz
Oxheart, Houston, August 2012, this, sign, closeup
Oxheart, Justin Yu, Karen Man
Oxheart, restaurant, interior
Oxheart, Houston, August 2012, this, exterior, patio

Since opening in March, the pocket-sized, 31-seat Oxheart, a casual slip of a restaurant located in the relative food desert of downtown's warehouse district, has taken local and national press by storm. Now it has yet another accolade as the only Texas restaurant to be named to Bon Appetit's Hot 10 list of the Best New Restaurants in America.

Andrew Knowlton ranks Oxheart at No. 8, between D.C,'s Little Serow and Baco Mercat in Los Angeles, with State Bird Provisions in San Francisco named the 2012 restaurant of the year.

 Looking for cutting edge dining in 2012? Oxheart pretty much defines it, according to Bon Appetit. 

Knowlton happily busts through Texas food stereotypes, naming Houston "Texas' best and most diverse food city (you heard me, Austin)" and raving about Oxheart's famous way with vegetables, from heirloom potatoes with vegetable ash to beet salad with savory granola and bitter almonds by chef/owners Justin Yu and Karen Man.

But Oxheart also earned plaudits for its relatively affordable $49 four-course menu, leaving Knowlton to break out one last cliché: "This level of food and that kind of price? Houston, we do not have a problem."

Unsurprisingly, Oxheart also had almost all of the characteristics that trended across the Top 50 restaurant list: No tablecloths, tweezers in the kitchen, counterside seating around an open kitchen, a husband/wife owner team, under 30 seats (well, close enough I guess), a prix fixe menu under $50, a record player and an animal in the restaurant name.

Or, as Knowlton says, "What kind of restaurants stand out to me in 2012? Well, to start, they're usually scrappy and personal, guided by chefs with a passion to create independently owned places they would want to eat at on their day off."

Looking for cutting edge dining in 2012? Oxheart pretty much defines it, according to Bon Appetit.