On this week's episode of "What's Eric Eating," co-host Linda Salinas joins CultureMap food editor Eric Sandler to discuss the news of the week as well as recent meals at two new bars and restaurants.
In the news of the week segment, Sandler and Salinas begin their conversation by discuss the Hotel Granduca's announcement that Ristorante Cavour has been rebranded as Alba Ristorante. Salinas notes that Houstonians typically shy away from hotel restaurants, but that a fine dining concept — complete with a champagne bar — could be a welcome addition to the Galleria area.
From there, they discuss the opening of The Loop, a churro concept from California. Sandler observes that churros seem to be having a moment, as they're on the menu at new establishments such as Homestead and Night Shift. That prompts some banter about favorite churros both hosts have enjoyed.
The restaurants of the week segment begins with a conversation about Reikina, chef Thomas Stacy's tasting menu concept that recently opened in CityCentre. They note that its roots as a dinner party remain in elements such as community seating and a breathing exercise but ultimately decide that they enjoyed the food and the strangers they met at the meal.
This week's episode concludes with a raves for Night Shift, the exciting new cocktail bar that recently opened in the East End. Salinas, a beverage consultant who has worked at some of Houston's best bars, praises the bar's execution.
"I love what they're doing. Their food is really good. The design is wonderful. It's comfortable," she says. "The cocktails range from being somewhat eccentric . . . but as a whole, the menu is inviting. I would take my non-cocktail friends there."