What's Eric Eating Episode 186
A Houston Vietnamese restaurant's starry rise, plus best bets for steak night
On this week's episode of "What's Eric Eating," Linda Nguyen joins CultureMap food editor Eric Sandler to discuss Roostar Vietnamese Grill, the restaurant she co-owns with her husband Ronnie. Nguyen begins the conversation by discussing how she became involved in the restaurant business and the process of opening the first Roostar after she and Ronnie graduated from the Hilton school at the University of Houston.
Later this year, the couple will open their third location in Houston's East End. Nguyen discusses what about the neighborhood appealed to the couple and what diners can expect from the restaurant.
Sandler asks Nguyen about her Instagram name, bossladyroostar, and what it means to be the boss lady.
"Over the years, I've had some not so nice comments about how I manage, but I feel like that's just the rawness of running a business. Sometimes you can't do it in a nice way," Nguyen says. Later, she adds:
"I train every single individual in this company. I feel that it's very important to fit into our culture, to build it and have people who are loyal to you. I'm just the boss of every thing I do."
Prior to the interview, Sandler and co-host Felice Sloan of Swankymaven.com discuss the news of the week. Their topics include: the unexpected closure of Burt's Meat Market; Omar Pereney starting a new hospitality consulting firm; and chef Vanessa Lomeli opening The 915, an El Paso-inspired Tex-Mex restaurant.
In the restaurants of the week segment, Sloan and Sandler discuss their recent brunch at Killen's, Ronnie Killen's Southern-inspired comfort restaurant. They also share a couple of top picks from Sandler's recent list of new steak nights.