On this week's episode of "What's Eric Eating," Diane and Willet Feng join CultureMap food editor Eric Sandler to discuss Burger-Chan, their cult favorite burger restaurant. The conversation begins with the couple sharing the story of how they met while attending Rice University.
Willet explains how he entered the world of professional cooking; eventually, he worked at Oxheart during its opening and ran a gastropub in Shanghai while Diane advanced her career as a teacher. Intrigued by the favorable lifestyle of operating in Greenway Plaza, they opened Burger-Chan in 2016.
Although the original Greenway Plaza location closed last year, the couple provides an update on their new location that's opening near the Galleria this summer. In a "What's Eric Eating" exclusive, chef Willet reveals he's switching from fresh to frozen fries.
The conversation concludes with Diane sharing the inspiration for the couple's "Food Is Love" initiative. Inspired by the meals they served to hospital workers last year, Feng began using money raised at pop-ups to buy meals for restaurant workers.
"It was never about I needed to raise x amount of dollars or feed x amount of places. It was, one is better than none. Two is more than one. Every donation or contribution I received, I could do one more," she says. "We get to do something that makes everyone feel good. We need feel good moments."
Prior to the interview, Sandler and co-host Matt Harris discuss the news of the week. Their topics include: the reopening of Romano's Pizza; Veronica and John Avila's plans to open the Old Sixth soda fountain on Washington Avenue; and Dave's Hot Chicken's push into the Houston market.
In the restaurants of the week segment, Harris and Sandler describe their meal at Da Gama Canteen, the new Anglo-Indian restaurant from the owners of Oporto. They praise its diverse, affordable menu, stylish setting, and affordable prices.