Go west, Bosscat
River Oaks whiskey-themed restaurant makes big leap to the 'burbs
Bosscat Kitchen & Libations will soon be pouring whiskey and serving Fruity Pebbles French toast in Katy. Real estate developer Ferguson Family Partners announced it has agreed to terms with Bosscat owners John Reed, Leslie Nguyenm, and Vinnie Capizzi to bring the concept to its District West development.
Bosscat will occupy approximately 5,000 square feet within the mixed-use development, which will comprise about 100 acres near the intersection of the Grand Parkway and Westpark Tollroad. Slated to open in the first quarter of 2020, it will be Bosscat’s third location, joining the original in Newport Beach, California and the Houston location on Westheimer near River Oaks District. Known for its creative cocktails, extensive whiskey selection, and comfort food menu, Houstonians have packed Bosscat since it opened in early 2017.
Reed tells CultureMap that Ferguson Family Partners first approached them nine months ago. Initially, they resisted, but the group aggressively courted Bosscat as part of a strategy that included reaching out to a number of successful inner loop operators, including Berg Hospitality (B&B Butchers) and Clark Cooper Concepts (Coppa, Ibiza).
“I liked the notoriety of the restaurateurs going out there. If we’re going out there, I want to be with other competitive restaurateurs that are in our space,” Reed says.
“It became a great opportunity to spread our wings. That area of town makes sense for what we do. There’s a lot of interest outside the loop. We thought we could compete really well out there.”
Bosscat joins Star Cinema Grill, Los Cucos, and Brazilian steakhouse Gauchos Do Sul as confirmed tenants at the development. It will also include a Kelsey-Seybold clinic, office space, and retail.
“We set out to bring an upscale, urban marketplace to West Houston and we are thrilled to work with Bosscat Kitchen,” Ferguson Family Partners partner Corey Ferguson said in a statement. “Their innovative menu and lively atmosphere have earned a strong following in Houston and Newport Beach, and District West is the perfect west Houston home for their concept.”
In terms of design, the new Bosscat will have many of the same features as the Westheimer, including space for private dining and the glassed-in whiskey room that features 300 bottles from distilleries around the world. One big change will be an indoor-outdoor bar that services both the dining room and a spacious patio.
In the two years since Bosscat opened, Reed says he’s learned that Houstonians prefer not to drive across town to patronize bars and restaurants. Initially, he thought the city could only support a couple of Bosscat locations, but that insight has him revising those plans.
“We don’t feel we’ve exhausted our efforts in Houston,” Reed says. “People like what we do. We think this is a good city to put three or four Bosscats in.”
That could also drive growth for BCK Kitchen & Cocktail Adventures, the company’s nostalgia-fueled bar and restaurant. Just as the first BCK opened a little away from Bosscat in the Heights, Reed thinks the concept could eventually work in a neighborhood adjacent to District West.
“BCK was an opportunity for us to get in a really cool neighborhood and test some theories we had,” he says. “That is supposed to be a hub and spoke concept. We built a Bosscat, we build a few BCKs around it. That’s the strategy, in theory.”
As for what’s next, Reed and his partners have their eyes on The Woodlands. “We see a lot of opportunity there and with Spring,” he says. “That general area would be a place I think Bosscat would thrive in.”