Openings & Closings: A Pair of Fire Closures, Refuge in The Woodlands & More

Categories: Restaurant News

The week began with a couple of fires; one forced a renowned sushi restaurant to close its doors, and the other took a brand-new creperie food truck off the road. Let's start with the badnews before taking a look at all of the new restaurants that opened this week.

On Sunday, September 29, around 1 a.m., a fire broke out inside MF Sushi, causing the popular spot to close. Chef and owner Chris Kinjo told CultureMap that he was in shock, but confirmed that no one was injured in the fire. The Houston Fire Department told Kinjo that they believe a soup warmer was the cause of the fire. MF Sushi will reopen, but Kinjo says he doesn't know when that will happen.

That wasn't the only closure caused by fire this week. Food truck Lulu Blues: A Creperie was put out of business after the truck's engine caught on fire during its first official day of service on Saturday, September 28. CultureMap's Eric Sandler reports that Laura Duffey and her husband realized the truck's engine was smoking and immediately pulled over to the shoulder of I610. Duffey says flames consumed the truck shortly thereafter. The engine was reportedly brand new, and the cause of the fire is unknown. The couple are trying to determine the cause of the fire.

Photo from Sweet Lola Yogurt Bar Facebook
We will miss these wonderful frozen yogurt creations from Sweet Lola Yogurt Bar.
Sweet Lola Yogurt Bar officially closed this past weekend. After selling its frozen yogurt for half the original price during its final week of service, the Midtown yogurt bar has shut its doors. We will just have to wait to see what Lola's next plans will be.

Now let's take a look at which restaurants opened their doors this week and which ones you can expect to begin service in the coming weeks. The list is large.

The Dosa Factory, an Indian creperie, opened at 5959 Richmond this week. Eater reports that the restaurant serves traditional Indian dishes, American meals and the namesake dosas, which are fermented crepes made from black lentils and rice batter.

The Refuge Bar and Bistro opened along The Woodlands Waterway on Wednesday, October 2. The new Woodlands bar serves hand-crafted cocktails, micro-brewed beers, wine and a variety of flatbreads, sliders, charcuterie and other shareable appetizers, such as curry-spiced mix nuts, blue crab cakes, and blue cheese and smoked-chicken artichoke dip.

Both Fellini Caffè and Cloud 10 Creamery have finished their soft openings and are open for regular business hours. Fellini Caffè held its grand opening on Monday, September 30; the café serves espresso, cocktails and small dishes -- it also has a custom bar imported from Italy to enhance the authentic Italian lifestyle the owners want to showcase.

Cloud 10 Creamery opened for regular business hours on Wednesday, October 2; the Rice Village creamery has finally unveiled the complete menu of frozen treats and ice cream flavors. Even though it is technically the fall season, we know it won't be cold anytime soon, so a scoop (or two) of ice cream is perfectly acceptable.

In coming-soon news, the Hughes Hangar team announced that they are working on a new concept, The de Gaulle. The new restaurant will pay homage to the Charles de Gaulle airport in Paris. CultureMap reports that The de Gaulle will be next-door to Hughes Hangar and will make guests feel as though they've stepped into a Parisian restaurant from yesteryear. It will be a café and bistro during the day, and a bar at night; the owners are hoping for a Halloween grand opening with a VIP soft opening the week before.

Photo by Jeff Balke
MAM'S Ice House will soon be open year-round at its permanent location.

MAM'S House of Ice Snoballs is going brick-and-mortar. The snoball stand announced on Facebook that they have signed a lease and will begin construction on the new storefront as soon as possible. The new Heights location should open in about four to six weeks. Expect new winter menu items, and longer hours, too. MAM's House of Ice Snoballs will be open year-round.

Swamplot reports that Big Eyed Fish will join the bar and club scene of Washington Avenue soon. The restaurant posted pictures on Facebook this past weekend showing the amount of construction that is going on at the location. The upscale Southern restaurant will serve breakfast, lunch and dinner every day, as well as brunch on Sundays.

D'Amico's Italian Market Café opened on Tuesday, October 1, in Katy. Work on the new location had been going on for months.

Thanks to fellow commenter Chic_Chick-Eats in last week's report, we know that the original China-based Chuan's Chinese Restaurant opened a couple of weeks ago. This is the first U.S. location for the restaurant. American Deli on Bissonnet and Pho LN Sushi Bar & Grill, located off of the Katy Freeway, joined the Houston restaurant scene last week as well.

In ramen news, Carl Rosa of the Sushi Club of Houston and the only ramen group in Houston, Ramen in Common, gave us insight into the first ramen-only restaurant in Houston, Ramen Jin. The restaurant is located at 18111 Westheimer, and according to owner Brian Chen will serve five ramens: tonkotsu, shoyu, shio, curry-flavor and vegetarian. Chen tells CultureMap that he will not treat ramen merely as a side dish, as other area restaurants do; ramen will be the main focus, and he will make stock for it every day.

Did we miss any openings or closings? Let us know in the comments section and we will be sure to include them in next week's report.

Head to the next page to see the openings and closings from the entire month of September...

Location Info


5887 Westheimer Road, Houston, TX

Category: Restaurant

Lulu Blues: a Creperie

8121 Castleford St., Houston, TX

Category: Restaurant

Sweet Lola Yogurt Bar - CLOSED

304 Gray, Houston, TX

Category: Restaurant

DGN Factory

5959 Richmond Ave., Houston, TX

Category: Restaurant

The Refuge Bar & Bistro

24 Waterway Ave., The Woodlands, TX

Category: Restaurant

Fellini Caffe

5211 Kelvin Drive, Houston, TX

Category: General

Cloud 10 Creamery

5216 Morningside Drive, Houston, TX

Category: Restaurant

Hughes Hangar

2811 Washington, Houston, TX

Category: Music

Mam's House of Ice

20th St. at Rutland St., Houston, TX

Category: Restaurant

Chuan's Chinese Restaurant

5901 Westheimer Road, Houston, TX

Category: Restaurant

American Deli

12647 Bissonnet St., Houston, TX

Category: Restaurant

Pho LN Sushi Bar & Grill - CLOSED

8408 Katy Freeway, Houston, TX

Category: Restaurant

Ramen Jin

11181 Westheimer Road, Houston, TX

Category: Restaurant

Sponsor Content

My Voice Nation Help

Maggie Ritas downtown location is supposed to be open on Monday, October 7.


Don't get scooped by chubby chaser: Georges Guy's latest flash in the pan, Bistro des Artes, closed after a couple short months of lonliness way out on Westheimer at Gray Falls.


Burger Guys downtown location closed? Is there any more info on this?

gossamersixteen topcommenter

Candelari's closed? I thought it was the one on Memorial?

timblack2 topcommenter

There's also that Izakaya Wa set to open on Memorial. Drove by last night and signs are up but didn't stop in to see if they were officially open.


Other restaurants that opened in September:

* Cafe 101 at University of Houston (4701 Calhoun)

* Pink's Pizza (5225 Bellaire Blvd.)

* Mono's Restaurant & Grill (14447 Bellaire Blvd.)

*  Hue Huong Giang (12345 Bellaire Blvd. - former Duc Vy space)

* Trios Mexican Grill (21810 Kingsland Blvd, Katy)

* Caddy Shack Bar & Grill (1809 Washington Ave.)

Fat Bao announced via Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram that they're expanding. They're opening a second location in Sugar Land.

Wilmington-based frozen yogurt chain, Fuzzy Peach, opens its first location outside of North Carolina at Vintage Park tomorrow (126 Vintage Park Blvd.). The location will celebrate its grand opening tomorrow with half-priced frozen yogurt all day and free yogurt from noon to 3pm.

Chiller Bee Frozen Yogurt in Conroe is expanding with another location in Montgomery (18417 Highway 105 W). The Montgomery shop opens today.

Great news for Ramen Jin! I've heard rumors of four more dedicated ramen restaurants opening in 2014 - three I've been able to confirm as for sure but can't disclose. I'm looking forward to the new restaurants and am excited to see what new-to-Houston trend takes over next year.


@albertkamkhagi The burger was way too expensive for a lunch. $16 for burger/fries and a drink. Too much for most of Downtown. 


Also NAM: Noodles And More opened its second location at 1915 W Gray.


@timblack2 thanks again, but I think Houston Press' writers and food writers for other local media give great scoops.

Now Trending

From the Vault