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Culture / Restaurants

Clark Cooper Concepts Introduces Salt Air Seafood Kitchen • Pizza Invades Houston • Yellow Rose Distilling Toasts to Charity

BY // 04.24.15

Salt Air Seafood Kitchen
Five unique dining options, an ever-changing chalkboard menu and a soothing ambience are a few things you can expect from Clark Cooper Concepts’ newest restaurant Salt Air Seafood Kitchen, opening this summer. Other CCC restaurants in the fold: Brasserie 19, Coppa Osteria, Punk’s Simple Southern Food and Ibiza. Led by chef Brandi Key (Coppa Ristorante), the seafood kitchen will draw influences from all corners of the world and highlight flavors from the regions where the seafood originates. An expansive cold bar will feature crudos, ceviches and oysters harvested from the East, West and Gulf Coast, while the kitchen will dish out classic options such as salt-and-pepper calamari, Crab Louie and whole roasted fish. For landlubbers, the menu offers Cornish game hen, lamb and beef, along with garden produce sourced from local farms. Salt Air will open at 3029 Kirby (formerly Brio Tuscan Grille) this summer.

Pizza (Oven) Party of Two
Ray Salti, owner of the recently closed Sorrel Urban Bistro, will revive the space located at 2202 W. Alabama with a new concept, Bollo Wood Fired Pizza. Not to be confused with a regular pizza joint, Bollo has imported a pizza oven from Napoli, Italy, that will fire off two styles of wood-fired pizzas: Pizza Blanco and Pizza Rosse. Choose from six options, ranging from Blanco de Bollo (extra virgin olive oil, fresh basil, fresh tomatoes and mozzarella) to a pancetta option (caramelized onions, roasted red peppers, goat cheese and arugula). Or, build your own pizza from 33 toppings. Bollo also serves small plates such as lobster ravioli and larger entrees including farm-sourced pork chop marsala. Bollo opens Wednesday, May 6 … Dallas-based Jay Jerrier, owner of Cane Rosso, opens his first Houston outpost before year’s end at 1835 North Shepherd in the Heights, with full bar and dog-friendly patio like its Deep Ellum counterpart. On the menu arehouse-made pastas and pizzas made with San Marzono tomatoes and locally sourced sausage. Brace yourself for the gigantic Italian pizza oven in the middle of the room.

Interior of El Tiempo Cantina 1308 Annex
Interior of El Tiempo Cantina 1308 Annex

Tex-Mex Titans
Houston staple El Tiempo has opened a seventh location, El Tiempo Cantina 1308 Annex, located at 322 Westheimer at Taft in the old La Strada space, with 320 seats, two covered patios, an upstairs bar and increased parking. Executive chef Domenic Laurenzo says that three of the things he’s most excited about at the new restaurant are: “We share a parking lot with Numbers, a real Houston institution. There are two palapas near the front door, and three, the amazing eight-table patio facing Westheimer.” And, oh yes, the dumbwaiter can lift 900 pounds of fajitas and margaritas in 18 seconds to the second floor … Ula’s Mexican Restaurant and Cantina expands from the suburbs of Missouri City (9009 Sienna Christus Drive) to restaurant row, 5555 Washington Avenue, with a modern Mexican colonial dining room, open kitchen, bar, covered patio and private room that seats 60. Ula’s opens Monday, April 27.

Toasts to Charity
Yellow Rose Distilling will fill your glass in the name of charity at the Thur Mix A Lot Guest Bartender Series, in Yellow Rose’s distilling facility and tasting room at 1224 North Post Oak Road #100. Each Thursday in April and May, guest mixologists concoct a signature cocktail using Yellow Rose’s award-winning whiskeys ($6). For $7, guests tour the distilling facility and sample five Yellow Rose whiskeys. Over the course of the series, proceeds will be divided among Make-A-Wish Foundation, Buffalo Bayou Partnership – Bayou Buddies, Houston Zoo – Flock, Preservation Houston – Pier & Beam, Candlelighters, Leukemia & Lymphoma Society, Dress for Success – Women of Wardrobe and Lucky Dog Rescue. At the end of the program, a jury selects the winning cocktail, and the final evening’s profits are given to the winning bartender’s charity of choice.

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