On this week's episode of "What's Eric Eating," restaurateur Brian Doke joins CultureMap food editor Eric Sandler to discuss his career. After working alongside his brother at Tiny Boxwoods, Doke went off on his own to open three establishments in The Heights: wine-obsessed restaurant Savoir, retro steakhouse Patton's, and newly opened patio bar Heights & Co.
The conversation begins with Doke discussing his time at Tiny Boxwoods, and how he helped the company grow by opening Tiny's No. 5 in West University Place. From there, Doke turns to Savoir; the restaurant opened in 2019 inside a converted warehouse at the corner of Yale and 14th St. In March, Patton's opened as a companion to Savoir with a classic menu of steakhouse favorites created by executive chef Eric Johnson.
Earlier this month, Doke added Heights & Co. in the former Taqo Mexican Kitchen space across from Savoir. Sandler asks why he decided to add a patio bar to his portfolio.
"The opportunity was very fortunate given that we're across the street already," he explains. "When the space was getting ready to be available, we have great relationships with all our neighbors, [the owner of Taqo said] 'would you be interested in the space.' It was a quick process of meeting with those guys and talking about it with our team. The space just screams patio bar in The Heights."
Prior to the interview, Sandler and co-host Felice Sloan discuss the news of the week. After assessing the results of the Ultimate Houston Barbecue Draft episode from a couple weeks ago, they turn their attention to three topics: Bobby Heugel and Justin Yu's plans for The Fancy, their restaurant at Galveston's upcoming Hotel Lucine; Fat Boy's Pizza's plans to bring its giant slices to Houston; and Heights Social, a new bar opening this fall in Shady Acres.
In the restaurant of the week segment, the duo share first impressions of Uchiko. The restaurant differentiates itself from Uchi by offering a full bar and dishes prepared on a wood-burning grill. Listen to the full episode to hear whether they think its a worthy companion to Uchi.