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Family flavors: New Galleria area restaurant brings simple flavors, top ingredients and sibling love

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Adair Kitchen, owners
Katie Adair Barnhart and Nick Adair are siblings getting into the family business with Adair Kitchen. Photo by Kim Coffman
Adair Kitchen, pig
The pig logo is in homage to the Adairs' mom, who is "obsessed with them." Photo by Kim Coffman
Adair Kitchen, sign, exterior
Adair Kitchen occupies the corner spot in the Sage Plaza Shopping Center Adair Kitchen/Facebook
Adair Kitchen, fried egg, ham
Prosciutto breakfast pita Photo by Sarah Rufca
Adair Kitchen, restaurant, waiting area
Adair Kitchen Photo by Sarah Rufca
Adair Kitchen, food
Chorizo and avocado toast Photo by Sarah Rufca
Adair Kitchen, owners
Adair Kitchen, pig
Adair Kitchen, sign, exterior
Adair Kitchen, fried egg, ham
Adair Kitchen, restaurant, waiting area
Adair Kitchen, food

Siblings Nick Adair and Katie Adair Barnhart are no strangers to the service industry — their parents own local chains Skeeters Mesquite Grill and Los Tios Mexican Restaurants and they grew up in the restaurants.

But when they were approached to open another Skeeters in a Tanglewood-area shopping center, Barnhart suggested creating a new concept based on some of her favorite restaurants in her adopted home of California.

Before long Barnhart was back in Houston and the Galleria-area Adair Kitchen was born, opening quietly this week in the corner of the Sage Plaza Shopping Center in the former Habaneros space.

 Eventually Adair Kitchen will expand to offer dinner (with table service), adding wine to the current coffee bar as soon as permitting allows. 

Currently open for breakfast and lunch, Adair features counter service and an open dining room that has a minimalist, slightly rough aesthetic dotted with adorable details: Chalkboard menus, fresh flowers and a bowl of lemons greeting guests at the entrance and spare, slightly retro light fixtures hanging in mason-style jars. There's also an enormous pig outline dominating one wall.

"Our mother is obsessed with pigs, so it just seemed like a natural fit," Barnhart says.

Eventually Adair Kitchen will expand to offer dinner (with table service), adding wine to the current coffee bar as soon as permitting allows. Right now, it is serving casual American classics mixed with healthy choices.

"Simple favorites is sort of our deal. We're deliberately simple but we want to use the best kind of ingredients we can, known dishes but made the best that we can do it," Adair says. "It's kinda how we grew up eating, our mom is like that and loves to cook. A lot of these plates are things we ate growing up."

At breakfast that includes not only omelettes, a granola parfait, breakfast tacos and fluffy, just-sweet-enough French toast but also unexpected choices like a flavorful prosciutto breakfast pita and a thick French bread toasted and topped with avocado, chorizo, lime and cilantro.

 "The same with breakfast: The men come in early and the women show up a little later." 

At lunch guests can build their own salad with a Brown Bag Deli-style worksheet or choose from a half-dozen choices on the menu. There are also light options like a black bean burger and a grilled chicken and quinoa bowl, plus heartier burger and sandwich choices.

With its niche somewhere between Down House and Black Walnut Café, Adair Kitchen feels like a smart addition to the neighborhood, catering to both Memorial moms and the professionals who work nearby.

"Our lunches have been men at 11:30, a lot of professional, corporate people that work around here, and then around 12:45 it switches to women, I think before they pick up kids from school," Barnhart says. "It's kinda funny.

"The same with breakfast: The men come in early and the women show up a little later."

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