Openings & Closings: Fisch, Fish and More Fish

Categories: Restaurant News

Bluefishoc.jpg
Which sushi place has opened its second Houston location?
Unfortunately, we're ending the week on a sad note: Sweet 'n' Namkin, which I just spotlighted on Wednesday as having my favorite dahi puri in town, has closed. Anyone want to try and direct me to a new place for dahi puri, preferably a place where I can cry into my chaat without drawing too many stares?

Meanwhile, in happier news, displaced chef Brandon Fisch -- you'll recognize him from our ike jime video and this week's cover story -- has found a home at Xuco Xicana, where he'll be the sous chef under Jonathan Jones.

"I formally accepted the job with JJ," Fisch told me on Wednesday, "and I will tell you that you will see more ceviches on the menu. More composed plates as well." Considering the cuisine that Fisch was drawing accolades for at Yelapa falls neatly in line with what Jones is already doing at Xuco Xicana, it seems like a match made in modern Mexican heaven. Fisch starts this Monday.

Speaking of Jones, his Tweet earlier this week about Felix 55 made my ears perk up: "Ok so the Crispy Skin Snapper and White Bean dish at Felix 55 I just had is one of the best fish dishes in HTown." Felix 55, which is still in its soft opening, is the newest restaurant to employ the talented Michael Kramer, previously of Voice. His most recent partnership with The Tasting Room didn't work out, and I already have an inkling that Felix 55 will be a much better fit for him.

antones village.jpg
Gone but not forgotten.
In other openings, The Blue Fish on Washington Avenue has now opened up next to benjy's. The sushi restaurant is the second location of this Dallas import; the first one is at Bayou Place, not to be confused with Blue Fish House on Richmond. Like benjy's, it's a cavernous space with an almost clubby vibe. And also like benjy's, it serves better food than it has to.

The original benjy's on Dunstan lost a neighbor recently, as fans of the original Antone's in Rice Village were disappointed to learn that the sandwich spot vacated its longtime location last week. Sources indicate that rent in the space -- next door to Kelvin Arms and benjy's -- had increased to the point where Antone's finally had to close down and reconcentrate on its Stella Link location. Its presence in the Village will be sorely missed.

In additional closings, B4-U-Eat reports this week that Manvel In-laws & Outlaws BBQ has shut its doors, as has Pagoda Vietnamese Bistro & Bar. Where will we enjoy our Pagoda rolls now? Where?



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Location Info

Xuco Xicana

2416 Brazos St., Houston, TX

Category: Restaurant

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12 comments
Misterk75
Misterk75

Old Papa Antone must be rolling in his grave at how his greedy kids ran his wonderful business into the ground.

A real shame.....

iMidget
iMidget

Guess who's taking over the Antone's space?!?! 

Suhas
Suhas

I never understood the appeal of Sweet n Namkin, but Krishna Chaat House, next to Udipi Cafe on Hillcroft, has the best Dahi Puri and other Chaat dishes in town.

trisch
trisch

Yay for Brandon! Going to have to drop in on XX more often now. And too bad about Antone's in the Village -- I randomly stopped there for lunch a couple of weeks ago, and it was so bare it seemed like they weren't restocking the shelves anymore.

carrie
carrie

the blue fish here also surprised me with its food and prices.  it has been a few months since i was there, but if i remember correctly, it had some really nice things on its happy hour menu, as well.

as for xuco xicana, i have eaten there three times, including today for lunch, and each meal has gotten progressively better.  i am thrilled to think that it could get even better than it is.

Corey
Corey

NO!! Don't take my original Antones........... I have no desire to go to Bellaire.. UGH I hate corporate Antones..

ShitThrowingMonkey
ShitThrowingMonkey

Timing and location...I bet Pagoda wishes it had Givrals location.

Mark
Mark

I love Shri Balaji Bhavan's dahi puri.  Also, I haven't eaten at The Blue Fish in Houston yet, but the one in Dallas is really fresh and surprisingly affordable, especially during happy hour.  I'm going to check this location out real soon!

iMidget
iMidget

Looks like it's going to be grab and go concept, done benjy's style of course.

Texmex01
Texmex01

hey drama queen, its less than 5 minutes to the one on stella link.......

iMidget
iMidget

Another tenant perhaps....

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