10 things to know
10 things to know in Houston food right now: Openings, closings, and people on the move
Editor’s note: Houston’s restaurant scene moves pretty fast. In order to prevent CultureMap readers from missing anything, let’s stop to look around at all the latest news to know.
Openings and closings
Montrose bar Stone’s Throw has closed. A representative for owner Shawn Bermudez (The Burger Joint, Present Company) confirmed the closure but declined to comment on whether Bermudez has any plans for the space. Opened in 2014, Stone’s Throw offered a more adult vibe than Boondocks, its next door neighbor; the bar offered an extensive selection of cocktails, including sharable punch bowls.
Maclane’s Cafe, the casual, family-friendly restaurant from Masraff’s owners Russell and Tony Masraff, closed on January 16, according to a post to the restaurant’s Facebook page. The restaurant opened in the summer of 2017.
Galleria-area diners don’t need to travel to the Third Ward to satisfy a craving for the Turkey Leg Hut’s signature turkey legs and Cajun bowls. The restaurant has opened a new food trailer at the Galleria Food Truck Park (2829 Chimney Rock Rd.). Find the trailer operating beginning at 11 am Thursday through Sunday.
People on the move
General manager Scott Sulma has left Tony’s. Sulma tells CultureMap that he’s ready for a new challenge after 15 years with Vallone Restaurant Group and is exploring opportunities both in and outside of the restaurant world. As Sulma notes, he leaves Tony’s after an incredible 2019 that saw it receive a James Beard semi-finalist nomination for Outstanding Service and a fifth place ranking in Houston Chronicle critic Alison Cook’s list of Houston’s top 100 restaurants.
Brasserie 19 has a new chef. Steven Chou comes to the River Oaks staple after stints at The Modern, a two-star Michelin restaurant in New York City, as well as restaurants in Hong Kong and Malaysia. The restaurant will introduce Chou at a special dinner on Wednesday, January 29. Tickets are $125.
Guard and Grace has parted ways with executive chef Daniel Virola and general manager Andrew Ojeda. Chef-owner Troy Guard tells CultureMap that he made the decision after consulting with the restaurant's other employees and the management team of his Denver-based TAG Restaurant Group. Currently, Guard says he's spending three to four days a week at the downtown steakhouse, and that the restaurant is meeting his expectations for service, quality, and revenue. Guard and Grace is the process of interviewing for a new executive chef and general manager.
Other news and notes
Montrose barbecue favorite The Pit Room has begun selling breakfast tacos. Available Monday through Friday from 7:30 am to 10 am, varieties include brisket, jalepeno-cheddar sausage, bacon and other; all tacos come with egg, refried beans, and choice of flour or corn (gluten-free) tortillas. Prices start at $3.50, and cheddar cheese is an additional $0.50. Salsas, pickled jalapeno, and other condiments are included.
Ocean Palace, one of Chinatown’s top dim sum destinations, recently suspended dinner service. The restaurant is open daily from 10 am to 4 pm. In a Facebook post announcing the change, the restaurant states that it will reopen for dinner with a new concept sometime in the future.
Shopper will have an easier time finding their favorite Bread Man Baking Co. loaves. In addition to its weekly stand at the Urban Harvest Farmers Market, the company now offers its breads at 10 Houston-area Whole Foods Markets. The newest additions, as of January 27, are Katy and Westchase. Other Whole Foods locations include Post Oak, Midtown, Kirby, and The Woodlands.
Off the map
Briargrove Mediterranean restaurant Craft Pita is the only Houston establishment on Yelp’s list of the Top 100 Places to Eat in 2020. The review website compiles its list based on the number of reviews an establishment receives and its rating. Although its only been open since August, Craft Pita has a perfect five-star rating across 149 reviews (as of January 23).