Openings & Closings: Tequila Bar, French Food and How Many Dunkin' Donuts?

Categories: Restaurant News

City-Oven.jpg
Photo from City Oven
The Houston Chronicle reports that HUSA Management is opening a pizza and craft beer pub called City Oven in the Heights. HUSA owns and operates a number of other pub chains in Houston, but City Oven will be the first to focus on artisan pizzas and craft beers. It's scheduled to open sometime at the end of August.

The Chronicle also reported on plans to turn a long-abandoned gas station at the corner of La Branch and Alabama in Midtown into a coffee and crepe joint called Retrospect Cafe. The owners of Tacos A Go-Go are behind the new cafe concept, which will also serve beer and wine. Currently, the former gas station is part of a graffiti and mural exhibit in conjunction with the Station Museum of Contemporary Art. One of the owners, Sharon Haynes, says she's been admiring the artwork on the building for years, so hopefully the structure will continue to be a canvas for local artists.

Allô French Rotisserie is planning a September opening, according to Eater. The non-stuffy French restaurant will open inside the Vintage Park Shopping Village and offer hearty French food in a casual dining setting. Eric Goldner, formerly of Hubbell & Hudson Bistro in the Woodlands, is the mastermind behind Allô.

Swamplot reports on a new "ranch to table" concept from chef Fritz Gitschner called 60 Degrees Mastercrafted. The restaurant is showing every aspect of its development on Facebook, from going to the Houston Permitting Center to bulldozing parts of the property to make room for new building. It will be opening in the fall.

Adam Karam, the owner of Red Door, Saint Genevieve, Wonder Bar and The Good Life, tells CultureMap he sold defunct sports bar Sawyer Park on Washington Avenue to his cousin Saleem Fernandez, who is remodeling the space. It seems Fernandez intends to keep the space a sports bar and is aiming for a September opening. Fernandez also owns Roosevelt Bar on Washington and 5th Amendment in Midtown.

A reader sent Swamplot photos of a TABC sign taped in the window of an old laundromat at 1009 Moy Street. that promises a Pink's Pizza will be opening soon. This will be the fourth Pink's Pizza inside the Loop; a fifth restaurant is located in Garden Oaks.

Dunkin' Donuts is planning to take over Houston, according to the Chronicle. The chain has announced plans to open three new branches with drive-throughs on Center Street, just north of Pasadena Boulevard, in Deer Park; west of Beamer Road and Scarsdale Road in southeast Houston; and south of the corner of Fry Road and Morton Road in Katy. Another store already opened in Terminal E of IAH on August 15. Jonathan Hicks, a broker with Davis Commercial Real Estate who represents Dunkin' Donuts, also told the Chronicle that the chain plans to open 60 stores in Houston over the next five years. Um, WHAT?! I know American runs on Dunkin', but I'm partial to a little mom-and-pop donut joint myself. Sigh.

In uber exciting news, Bernie's Burger Bus has been granted its own booth inside Reliant Stadium for all Texans home games. The food truck had previously sold burgers to tailgaters, but moving into the stadium is a dream come true, Texans fan and Burger Bus owner Justin Turner told CultureMap. The booth will be on the first level of Reliant Stadium, which means visitors won't need special tickets to access it. No word yet on whether the burger prices will be jacked up to match that of the stadium beer.

B4-U-Eat reports two closings this week: Pho Quyen in Greenspoint and Don Julio's in Cypress. No word on why either place has closed, but Don Julio's Web page still lists the Cypess restaurant as open.

Location Info

The Pastry War

310 Main St., Houston, TX

Category: Music

Social Junkie

2412 Washington, Houston, TX

Category: Music

Bernie's Burger Bus

, Houston, TX

Category: Restaurant

NRG Stadium

1 Reliant Park, Houston, TX

Category: General

Don Julio's Mexican Restaurant - CLOSED

25250 NW Freeway, Cypress, TX

Category: Restaurant

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10 comments
Sara Meyn Holder
Sara Meyn Holder

Don't like Dunkin... Give me Shipley's or the donut places owned by Asian mom and pops any day...

H Newcomb
H Newcomb

No, you shouldn't be worried about the Dunkin' Donuts situation. If Krispy Kreme wasn't able to get a foothold with all the ballyhoo and demand, I doubt there will be any need for more DD's.

Lisa Hardgrove
Lisa Hardgrove

Why would you POSSIBLY be worried about Houston having more Dunkin Donuts locations?

Lindsey Stevic
Lindsey Stevic

Dunkin Donuts actual donuts aren't very tasty give me Shipley's ANY day of the week.

Matt Herring
Matt Herring

Where would we be without Houston Press?

Cheap Eats In Houston
Cheap Eats In Houston

In the past, openings and closings mentioned in the comments were listed the following week in the Openings and Closings report, I take it that no longer. I left a comment a few weeks ago about the opening of Bites Macaroon, yet no mention until two weeks later when CultureMap wrote about it. Same goes for others I provided but either they're ignored or not listed here until it's seen in B4-U-Eat's newsletter or reported elsewhere weeks later (like the Pho Quyen closing I sent to you last Wednesday or Thursday but was only listed this week after B4-U-Eat listed it in this week's newsletter). I would think that any opening would be noteworthy to report  being that Houstonians love to dine out, especially at places that have just opened. In any case, here's other openings and closings that aren't mentioned above:

* The Brooklyn Cafe in The Woodlands is closed (3095 College Park Dr.)

* Bambu Desserts & Drinks second Houston location opened last weekend at 13411 Tomball Parkway

* Pink's Pizza is also opening a new location in Bellaire this fall.

Blind item: a recently closed restaurant in The Woodlands may be reopening as Papparucho's.

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