The Eating ... Our Words 100: Staci Davis, Owner of Radical Eats

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Photos by Carla Soriano
Staci Davis, owner of Radical Eats.

Eating...Our Words has embarked on a project to profile 100 Houston culinarians of all fields, practices, careers and backgrounds. This isn't a Best of Houston® list, it's not a 100 Favorites list and it's not in any particular order. Instead, the Eating Our Words 100 is a way to introduce our readers to some of the most notable people behind Houston's exciting and deep-rooted culinary culture. Twice a week, we'll explore a new culinarian's work, his or her inspiration and what makes Houston a perfect home.

What she does:
"I own a vegan, vegetarian, gluten-free restaurant, which is sort of a little dive on the near north side that we like to think pumps out really great food. We sort of cater to people that are looking for a healthier alternative, and also just people looking for something different," Staci Davis, owner of Radical Eats, explains.

"We like to have fun with it," Davis continues. She believes that vegetables are vastly underused. And she is not a fan of fake meat. So, rather than put out imitation meat products made from vegetables, Radical Eats' menu makes fresh, locally sourced vegetables the protagonists on the menu.

Prior to opening her storefront, which has now been going for "just under 20 months," Staci did farmers' markets, weddings and catering for about four years, as well as sold some food products at Antidote and Blackhole. She opened Radical Eats because she needed a new "home" in which to create all of the products she was selling all around town. Since opening the restaurant, Staci has been getting "busier and busier and busier," so she had to "let some of the other stuff go," but that's not to say that she wouldn't like to go back to her roots and sell all around Houston.

Why she enjoys it:
As far as why she got into and enjoys the food aspect of her business, Davis has been a chef since she was 17, and she's always loved it. Every time she goes to a party, she always ends up in the kitchen. She likes working in kitchens -- "the camaraderie, the speed, the creativity. I've been doing it for a long time. I've always liked vegetarian food. I've always liked playing with vegetables. It's just something I was good at. Another thing is that I always wanted to get some products in the grocery store. All the fake meats never fit the categories that I wanted. I wanted specific things and I wanted to fulfill what I thought was a need," Davis says. Davis created a large part of Radical Eats' Mexican-inspired menu.

Why she enjoys owning her own business? "I like the people that I work with --they're all kind of nuts. And it's just fun solving problems and seeing it work. It also just makes me feel like a grown-up. I like the customers; I like telling them jokes. It's fun. It's just like family."


Location Info

Radical Eats

507 Westheimer Rd, Houston, TX

Category: Restaurant


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7 comments
zebra56
zebra56

I believe the owner has a right to try and maximize her profit, thereby affording diners a larger facility with an intact roof, easier access, and a more varied menu which will attract more people while still serving the best vegan food in town. If certain people find that objectionable (or hypocritical) they could always go eat at one of the many other excellent vegan restaurants in town. Oh, wait, I forgot - there are none!

juanDV
juanDV

Wow don't bite the hand that feeds you, Vegans have supported RE since day one. Even when she abruptly moved from ashbury  we followed her having meetup  groups & catering. 

With bad parking, lights going out, roof leaking,sloppy employees, and a sketchy menu. They don't even look healthy and I always had a hard time believing she was vegan. Its hypocritical for her to say environmentally friendly when her window cleaner is not even green & she'll be serving meat.

sweetp8
sweetp8

I have dined at Radical Eats quite a few times and thoroughly enjoyed the delicious food and infectious positive energy of the staff.  However I would be greatly disappointed if Staci opened a restaurant that served dead animals, whether locally sourced, free range, whatever.  As a vegan I want to find businesses that I can truly stand behind 100%, there are not many out there and this would leave even less.

zebra56
zebra56

Radical Eats has the very best guacamole in town, bar none.

iasicsadtv
iasicsadtv

@juanDV I never claimed to be vegan, ever.  I have tried to provide the vegan community with vegan food.  When the vegan community asked for a vegan restaurant in town they were not specific about roofs or employees or location.  I have tried to hire all vegan employees but that didn't work out so good.  We will continue to try to bring Houston more plant based food than most restaurants in town and to support our local farmers like we always have.  I'm glad you are out there fighting the good fight and I realize that we can't please everyone. Don't give up.

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