On this week's episode of CultureMap's restaurant podcast "What's Eric Eating," Agricole Hospitality owner Morgan Weber joins food editor Eric Sandler to discuss a variety of topics related to the Heights-based restaurant group. After toasting with a shot of Eight Row Flint's latest barrel, a rye whiskey from Vermont-based distiller WhistlePig, Weber describes his efforts to source unique spirits for the popular Heights bar and his trip to Kentucky to source a very special barrel of Knob Creek bourbon.
Then the duo move into the heart of their conversation with an in-depth discussion about Agricole's plans to open three concepts in EaDo: an all-day restaurant called Indianola, a cocktail bar called Miss Carousel, and a pizza joint called Vinny's. Weber begins by explaining the decision to open new projects outside the company's base in the Heights to a new neighborhood and the steps Agricole is taking to ensure it manages its new growth successfully by promoting Bryan Davis to director of operations and making culinary director Vincent Huynh a full partner.
The conversation then turns to learning more details about each of the three establishments that will open in EaDo. Weber explains that just because Indianola is described as serving "dishes from the American canon that one could comfortably partake of everyday" doesn't mean it's Agricole's take on Black Eyed Pea; rather, the restaurant is inspired by the cuisines and port cities that the three partners's ancestors used to enter this country: San Francisco (Huynh), Indianola (Weber), and Ellis Island (Pera).
He then relates the negative experience in Austin that made him want Miss Carousel to serve as a move away from the trend towards speakeasy-style cocktail bars before discussing the styles of pizza Vinny's will serve. Finally, Weber provides some updates on the plans to sell wine at Revival Market, addresses the rumors that he'd like to own a distillery, and participates in the lightning round.
Prior to Weber joining the show, L'Olivier owner Mary Clarkson and Sandler discuss the news of the week, including Golden Bagels & Coffee's plans to open in the Heights, Austin restaurant Foreign & Domestic's hints that chef-owner Ned Elliot's plans to open in Houston may finally be coming to fruition, and Jimmy Chew Asian Kitchen's search for a new investor. In the Restaurants of the Week segment, Sandler and Clarkson pick their favorite new restaurants that have opened this year.
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