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.
The Galleria has a new coffee shop that provides a locally-owned alternative to Starbucks. Shoppers will find Gene Jones Coffee in the mall’s food court.
Developed by the owners of the FOMO Factory immersive art experience, Gene Jones brews locally-roasted Tenfold Coffee and offers vegan snacks from Sinfull Bakery. It opened in late December.
Chef on the move
Brandi Key has left her role as the operating partner for Heights restaurant Alice Blue, the chef announced on Instagram. Key joined the restaurant in 2019 after working as the executive chef for Clark Cooper Concepts, where she helped develop the menus for Coppa Osteria, SaltAir Seafood Kitchen, and others, and a brief stint with Lasco Enterprises.
“Without these four walls, and the people in it, I wouldn’t be who I am today. It’s been a wild ride in 2020 but damn, it was all so worth it,” she writes.
Eat well and do good
Chef Dawn Burrell is the latest participant in Tacos a Go Go’s Taco Tuesday Team-Up fundraiser. The former Kulture chef has created a Beef Cheek Birria taco — beef birria, adobo, Monterey Jack cheese, red onion, pickled cilantro leaves, and sliced radishes — that will be available at all Tacos A Go Go locations every Tuesday in January. A portion of proceeds from every taco sold will benefit I’ll Have What She’s Having, the local non-profit dedicated to women’s health.
Fleming’s has a new offering for wine lovers. The steakhouse, part of the Bloomin Brands group that includes Outback Steakhouse and Bonefish Grill, is pouring wines from California winery Belle Glos as part of its “Winter Uncorked” special. For $28, diners will receive pours of Pinot Noir Balade, Pinot Noir Dairyman, Pinot Noir Clark & Telephone, and Quilt Cabernet Sauvignon.
Le Colonial has selected Recipe for Success as the beneficiary of its monthly Dine Out for a Cause series. Now through January 31, the restaurant will donate $1 from each prix-fixe lunch ($25) and dinner ($45) menu sold. The local non-profit had approximately $40,000 worth of equipment stolen from its Hope Farms project on Thanksgiving Day.
Houston Sauce Pit, a food truck that serves vegan barbecue(5000 Almeda Rd.), wants to help diners embrace Veganuary by giving customers a free meal on their fifth visit. Opened last year, the truck serves an array of barbecue-inspired, vegan dishes such as Loaded Brisket Mac (mac & cheese topped with vegan brisket), BBQ Smoked Wangs (vegan wings), and Smoked Loaded Elote (street corn on the cob).
“Roughly 40-percent of our customers are meat eaters, and the rest are vegan or moving toward a plant-forward lifestyle,” owner Jarrett Milton said in a statement. “Our success is built on making [dishes] that tastes like real Texas barbecue, with all that smokey, sweet flavor, but with plant-based proteins instead of meat.”