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Culture / Restaurants

A Trendy New Bowling Alley and New Restaurants Give This Houston Mall a Major Boost

A Hotspot Gets Even Hipper

BY // 08.15.16

While boutiques and restaurants continue to proliferate in Houston, it’s sometimes necessary to venture outside of the city’s Inner Loop to experience what’s next and new. This month, we trek to CityCentre for a duo of debuts.

Two For One
A bowling alley and full-service restaurant under one roof — Bowl & Barrel opened its first Houston location this month at 797 Sorella Court. The boutique bowling concept is unique to its CityCentre digs, providing a contemporary entertainment experience courtesy of Free Range Concepts, a restaurant group helmed by Houston native Kyle Noonan and Josh Sepkowitz. 

Fourteen lanes, technicolor bowling balls, and a fleet of flat screens (perfect for the ongoing Olympic games) fill the 16,000-square-foot space.

But bowling is merely one aspect of the sprawling venue. Bowl & Barrel’s in-house restaurant hopes to wow guests with a diverse menu put together by executive chef Daniel Menchaca.

There's no shortage of color at the new Bowl & Barrel.
There’s no shortage of color at the new Bowl & Barrel.

“We look forward to introducing the Bowl & Barrel concept to my hometown,” said Noonan, FreeRange Concepts’ co-owner. “We’ve put a lot of love and thought into the design of the space, the development of our menu, and the selection of our staff to make this a one-of-a-kind entertainment destination.”

Local ingredients help construct dishes including hot-fried quail; cornish hand pies; blue cheese-stuffed medjool dates served with bacon, a dish known as Devils on Horseback; 18-inch pizzas (pepperoni, Margherita, sausage and peppers, and mushroom); and Burgers in a Bag, three sliders slathered with house-made mustard and Texas fondue.

Holiday Gifting

  • Asher Gallery
  • Museum of Fine Arts Houston
  • Mariquite Masterson
  • Loeffler Randall - Shoes
  • Wayne Smith
  • Mariquite Masterson
  • Wayne Smith
  • Loeffler Randall - Clutch
  • Elaine Turner - Felicia Stole in Magenta
  • Oscar De La Renta - Clutch
  • Cotton Club
  • Bond No 9 - Perfume
  • Oscar De La Renta - Earrings
  • Cle Du Peau - Lip Gloss
  • Cle Du Peau - Nail Polish
  • Bond No 9 - Candle
  • Cotton Club
  • Elaine Turner - GiGi Flats

At the bar: classic cocktails and assorted brews, including four rotating German-style Texas craft beers.

Neighborhood Nosh
Just steps away from Bowl & Barrel lies Free Range Concepts’ second Houston venture, neighborhood eatery The General Public.

The new restaurant, which officially opened last Friday, aims to redefine classic dishes, serving everything from salads and sandwiches to oysters and burgers — all composed of local ingredients and produced in-house. TGP’s menu was also created by chef Menchaca.

“We are really proud of how our vision for this restaurant morphed into reality,” said Sepkowitz. “It’s unlike any other dining establishment you’ll find in Houston. We invite everyone who enjoys great food, cold drinks and fun times to come visit The General Public and experience it for yourself. We think you’ll add it to your short list of go-to destinations.”

Lunch and dinner delivers dishes such as Mama’s Tamale Pie filled with guajillo and ancho chicken chilli, cheddar cheese, and a cornbread crust; Wagyu beef served with creamed barley and rye, ale-glazed shallots, and watercress; green chile grilled cheese made with jalapeño cheddar bread and green chile gravy; and shrimp and avocado salad (look for the kick of horseradish).

Home, chic home.

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