Ciao, Montrose!

New Italian restaurant from owners of River Oaks hot spots heads to buzzy Montrose development

New Italian restaurant heads to buzzy Montrose mixed-use development

Atlas Restaurant Group Alex Smith Steve Radom Eric Smith
Atlas Restaurant Group owners Alex and Eric Smith (left and right) with real estate developer Steve Radom (center). Courtesy of Atlas Restaurant Group

A Baltimore-based restaurant has big plans for Montrose. Atlas Restaurant Group, the company behind Ouzo Bay and Loch Bar, will open a new Italian restaurant in the heart of the city's premier dining neighborhood. 

Slated to open spring 2022, the still unnamed restaurant will occupy 5,500 square feet at  the Montrose Collective, the mixed-use development currently under construction next to Uchi on lower Westheimer. The restaurant will be a new concept for Atlas that's distinct from Tagliata, the company's Italian-influenced steakhouse. Details are light, but it will feature "handmade pastas, charcuterie, and prime steaks," according to a press release.

Loch Bar and Ouzo Bay opened at River Oaks District in 2019. The success of the two seafood restaurants — a lively, East Coast-inspired seafood tavern next to a European-influenced, fine dining concept  — prompted Atlas to seek more opportunities in Houston.

“The success of Ouzo and Loch Bar, combined with the city’s business-friendly environment, made the decision to grow here an easy one,” Atlas Restaurant Group co-owner Alex Smith said in a statement. “Frankly, we love Houston and plan to continue creating new brands here under the Atlas umbrella wherever it makes sense. And Montrose Collective made absolute perfect sense.”  

Currently under construction, the Montrose Collective will consist of over 100,000 square feet of office space, more than 50,000 square feet of retail space, and the relocated branch of the Houston Public Library that's currently on Montrose Boulevard. When it opens later this year, the development expects to be home to six new restaurants and 15 retail shops, including an outpost of New York's Van Leeuwen Ice Cream.

Like other projects from developer Radom Capital (Heights Merchant and M-K-T Heights), Montrose Collective will feature design by Texas architect Michael Hsu Office of Architecture.

“We couldn’t be more excited that Alex and Eric have selected Montrose Collective for their first Italian concept in Texas,” said Radom Capital Managing Principal Steve Radom. He added, “I was absolutely blown away by their creativity and attention to detail, on a recent visit to Baltimore, and the quality of their concepts speaks for itself, and I’m confident they will create something special for Montrose that will resonate with locals and visitors alike.”