Lance is back

Veteran Houston chef opens his highly anticipated new Heights restaurant

Veteran Houston chef opens highly anticipated new Heights restaurant

Fegen's restaurant Gaitano's Cosenza square
Gaitano's Cosenza Square is one of the pizza options. Photo by Carla Gomez
Lance Fegen
Chef-owner Lance Fegen. Photo by Carla Gomez
Fegen's restaurant rago's Sunday meatball
Rago's Sunday Meatball. Photo by Carla Gomez
Fegen's restaurant Gaitano's Cosenza square
Lance Fegen
Fegen's restaurant rago's Sunday meatball

The Heights' newest destination for classic American fare and Southern Italian classics has opened its doors. After a quiet soft opening over the weekend, Fegen's officially begins service on Tuesday, April 6.

Located in the former Liberty Kitchen space at the corner of Studewood and 11th St., Fegen's is the new home for veteran Houston chef Lance Fegen. The chef helped establish The Heights as a dining destination when he opened Glass Wall in 2006 and the first Liberty Kitchen in 2011.

When Fegen and his partners opted to sell the Liberty Kitchen brand to State Fare owner Culinary Khancepts last year, they kept The Heights location for this new concept, which, to be very clear, is unrelated to the similarly spelled Feges BBQ (Editor's note: we've received a few questions from readers). 

“It’s very meaningful to be opening a restaurant that bears my name," Fegen said in a statement. "Myself and the team hope to make it a wonderful experience all around, offering up approachable American food and a cozy atmosphere. Plus, we’re stoked to give a new life to our home of nearly a decade.”

That approachable American food starts with small plates such as hot cross buns and mussels and a selection of salads. From there, diners may choose from Italian-inspired pizzas and pastas that nod to Fegen's ancestry or opt for a range of steak and seafood options that are more in the style of the chef's previous concepts. 

Liberty Kitchen's coastal hues have been replaced with a darker palate of red and green with brass accents. A lowered ceiling has been installed to give the room a more intimate feel that provides a setting for family lunches, business dinners, and date night.

Handling the front of house will be two industry veterans. General manager Matt Hart comes from the corporate world of Landry's and Darden Restaurants. Bar manager Nicole Meza will bring the craft aesthetic she learned at Weights + Measures and Julep to Fegen's cocktail offerings.

For now, Fegen's is open for dinner Tuesday-Sunday beginning at 5 pm. Lunch and weekend brunch will follow. The restaurant does not accept reservations but does offer to-go.