Restaurant Buzz

Houston Dining News for December 2013

Laurann Claridge
December 01, 2013

What are you doing for breakfast this Saturday? Pop into the new pop-up bakery at Triniti Restaurant. As a precursor to Ryan Hildebrand’s FM903, which is under construction in the former Ruggles Grill space in the Montrose, pastry chef Samantha Mendoza is baking up festive holiday sweets in Triniti’s lounge, starting at 10 am Saturdays. Treat yourself to shortbread, éclairs, brioche and more … Vallone’s Steakhouse in Memorial is poised to open within a couple of weeks with chef Grant Gordon at the helm. Chuck Criswell is the steakhouse’s GM. If the name sounds familiar, he’s the son of Ann Criswell, the beloved former food editor at the Chronicle for many years … Here’s a great gift idea: an Honor Card from The Houston Food Bank. Just make a minimum donation of $10 in someone’s honor, and the Food Bank will send a printed card in the design of your choice on your behalf. Feel good that for every $1 you donate, three full meals are provided to a hungry Houston neighbor in need. Learn more at … After three years in business, Michael Savino, owner/head baker of Michael’s Cookie Jar, has opened a second location of his popular cookie bakery and beverage shop. Look for his downtown locale in the tunnel beneath Pennzoil Place. Savino’s all-butter confections (some of which are sandwiched with Fat Cat ice cream) can be delivered to businesses all over the downtown area … Longtime Houston Country Club chef Fritz Gitschner is preparing to open 60 Degrees Mastercrafted, the ordained master chef’s ranch-to-table dining concept, in the former Palazzo’s location on Westheimer near Kirby … Landry’s Inc. — owner of Morton’s The Steakhouse, among a slew of other restaurants — has created Morton’s Grille, a casual sister concept that features the steak-house favorites that have made Morton’s famous, as well as shared plates and grilled items. The first location has debuted in the Woodlands on the Waterway … Looking for a late-night nosh? Reserve 101 Whiskey Bar and Cocktail Lounge is (so they tell us) the only venue downtown with late-night food service seven days a week till 2 am. Kitchen manager Nico Schibetta makes all the bites, such as rotating cheese and charcuterie boards, flatbreads and pretzel dough with whiskey-cheese fondue, fresh daily, and when they’re gone, they’re gone … Max Gonzalez of craft coffeehouse Catalina Coffee has opened another coffee haunt, this one called Mercantile, located in Rice Village, featuring its own Amaya roasting beans and coffee worth the drive.