Openings & Closings: November 2011

Categories: Restaurant News

elrey-thumb-560x420.jpg
Photo by Amber Ambrose
El Rey closed this week -- but which one?
Remember how busy of a month October was for openings and closings? November was a little slower, but not by much.

In upcoming restaurants, one of our favorite bloggers reports that Calliope's is opening a second location of its popular po-boy shop. This one will be located in far southwest Houston at 7950 West Bellfort. The location formerly housed a Frenchy's Chicken and a Cajun-Made Cafe.

Meanwhile, another spot with a slew of former occupants (Dharma Cafe, Ray's Franks, Latin Bites) looks like it might finally be getting a long-term tenant: Justin Yu and his wife Karen Man are opening their much-anticipated restaurant, Oxheart, at 1302 Nance in downtown's warehouse district next year. Yu told the Chronicle's Alison Cook that the 26-seat restaurant will emphasize his own modern Gulf Coast style and incorporate a large amount of seasonal vegetables into each dish on the nightly tasting menu, while Man's pastry skills will be showcased as well.

Latin Bites, for its part, is moving to the former Rockwood Room location in Tanglewood. Owner Roberto Castro told CultureMap's Sarah Rufca that the new space will not only offer much more seating, it will also give him the opportunity to provide two items the old Latin Bites space never had: alcohol and a ceviche bar.

In other openings news, Triniti is finally very near to completion and hopes to open before the year's end. Chef Ryan Hildebrand has been hosting "Snapshot Dinners" to give fans previews of the cuisine they can expect at the restaurant, which Hildebrand is describing as "progressive, regional American cuisine with California/West Coast sensibilities." People who miss Hildebrand's cooking from his time at Textile will be pleased to see that same style again at Triniti, with menu items such as an appetizer of leeks, king trumpet mushrooms, shaved Wagyu and a foie gras dumpling in veal broth or an entree of salmon with mushrooms, welks, tarragon and chestnuts.

In closings, one of downtown's most reliable lunch spots, El Rey on Main Street, shuttered this week. This leaves the Mexi-Cuban chain with only three locations in Houston and one in Copperfield.

And the brand new Brownstone Cafe has already closed after only a few short months in business. On its website, a message from the owner reads: "Thank you everyone that helped make the last year eventful but we regret to inform you we have decided to closes our doors. Hopefully soon there will be a new and exciting venue to explore at 2736 Virginia but until then goodnight..."

Read on for a wrap-up of the entire month in openings and closings.

Location Info

El Rey Taqueria - CLOSED

233 Main, Houston, TX

Category: Restaurant


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11 comments
Jalapeno
Jalapeno

La Mia has a for lease sign up.  

iMidget
iMidget

Laurier finally closed.  Wow.  That place hung in there for a really long time.

ScottZ
ScottZ

Madre's Mexican (not sure of the exact name) opened in Friendswood in the spot formerly occupied by Main Street Grill and then Billy Goat's ( I never saw Goat's actually open even though they did have a sign).

Corey
Corey

El rey is odd, they did pretty decent lunch business, and before main street was all gangster-fied it did a good business late too.. Odd..

Foodiebyheart
Foodiebyheart

Heard Jus Mac opened its second location in Sugar Land. 

sbterry
sbterry

Drove by the former Tavern on Gray which had moved to the former Habernos location on Milam -- all is locked up with a "for lease" notice on the billboard.  Guess the new location did suit them.

Jalapeno
Jalapeno

Really enjoyed my one visit to Laurier.  The location just wasn't convenient for me.  I hope we see them turn up in a better location.

Katharine Shilcutt
Katharine Shilcutt

Wow, that was fast. The place seemed to be full every time I drove by, too.

Katharine Shilcutt
Katharine Shilcutt

That's the old Tavern on West Gray site at West Gray and Waugh. It's been torn down.

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