Culture / Restaurants

Houston’s New Restaurant Guide: 14 Future Hotspots You Need to Know

BY // 10.12.16

The Houston restaurant scene is constantly changing, with new hotspots, must-try places, and major culinary events coming along on a daily basis. Even the most dedicated eater can have trouble keeping up, but don’t worry, PaperCity has you covered.

Acclaimed chef and restaurateur Chris Shepherd (Underbelly, Hay Merchant) is restoring the former Mark’s American Cuisine space at 1658 Westheimer Road with One Fifth, a revolving restaurant slated to open in January 2017. One Fifth will  changes concepts once a year for five years starting with One Fifth Steak at the restaurant’s debut. One Fifth Romance Languages — Shepherd’s take on cuisine inspired by France, Italy,and Spain — and seafood restaurant One Fifth Fish follow. Shepherd’s final two concepts have yet to be revealed.

Chef Travis Lenig (formerly F.E.E.D TX restaurant group) goes solo with Field & Tides. The future restaurant, opening in the former Zelko Bistro space at 705 East 11th Street, highlights field-centric fare (think farm greens, beef, game, pork, and poultry) alongside Gulf Coast cuisine. Field & Tides is expected to open before Christmas Day.

With Killen’s Barbecue, Killen’s Steakhouse, and Killen’s Burgers under his belt, Pearland’s meat maestro Ronnie Killen opens his first Houston restaurant — Killen’s STQ —  in the former Bramble space at 2231 South Voss Road. Expect live fire steakhouse cooking alongside a barbecue-centric menu.

The team behind Post Oak restaurant Masraff’s will debut its second eatery Maclane’s Café at 1753 Post Oak Boulevard in the former Nit Noi space on December 1. Lookout for everything from soups, salads, and burgers to fish tacos and fried chicken.

Dalia and Jamie Zelko, owners of the former Zelko Bistro, are launching Ivy & James next spring in Evelyn’s Park (4400 Bellaire Boulevard). The restaurant, which was named through a community vote, will highlight local and sustainable fare as well as offer cooking, gardening, and wellness instruction.

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Sibling duo Nick Adair and Katie Adair Barnhart (Adair Kitchen, Eloise Nichols) are set to open juice and coffee bar concept Bebidas in November at 2606 Edloe Street (former Infinity Title building). Fresh-pressed juices, coffees, nut milks, smoothies, and matcha will be served alongside healthy bites including avocado toast, breakfast tacos, granola parfaits, and acai bowls.

After making its Houston debut in River Oaks District this May, Hopdoddy Burger Bar will open its second outpost in Rice Village at 5510 Morningside Drive (currently Baker Street Pub & Grill) in 2017.

Food cart Melange Creperie is opening its first brick-and-mortar restaurant at the Heights Mercantile development (711 Heights Boulevard) in early 2017. The new digs showcase crepe favorites alongside new additions including salads, soups, sandwiches, agua frescas, and locally roasted coffees

Second ward eatery Kitchen 713 brings its Asian-inspired Southern fare to a new location at 4601 Washington Avenue. Expect an early December opening.

Dallas-based pizzeria Cane Rosso is debuting its second Houston location at 4306 Yoakum Boulevard. The new Montrose outpost serves the brand’s signature Neapolitan pies

Relish Restaurant and Bar is now open at 2810 Westheimer Road (formerly The Bird and The Bear Restaurant). The full-service restaurant dishes out Mediterranean and American cuisine including burrata salad with peaches, crispy fried chicken, crème fraîche-topped glazed carrots, and greek yogurt topped with house-made granola.

Eloise Nichols Grill & Liquors marks the first opening in the Westheimer Oaks development at 2400 Mid Lane. Named for sibling proprietors Nick Adair and Katie Adair Barnhart’s (Adair Kitchen, Bebidas) grandmother Eloise, the neighborhood eatery boasts dishes such as harissa-marinated redfish on the half shell, coffee-roasted beets, chicken and dumplings, pastrami pork ribs, and a classic Texas burger all courtesy chef Joseph Staysich. 

Texas Medical Center’s fine dining concept Third Coast is now open at 6550 Bertner Avenue. Chef Jon Buchanan channels Houston’s diversity to produce plates inspired by Asian, Hispanic, Native American, Czech-German, and traditional Texas cuisine.

Liberty Kitchen at the Treehouse is now open at 963 Bunker Hill Road. This marks the fifth outpost for Liberty’s burgeoning restaurant empire.

Stationed in the historic Raphael building (110 Main Street), cocktail bar Lilly & Bloom is now open for business. Expect creative craft cocktails, weekly guest bartenders, and a 2 am close time.

Just steps away from Lilly & Bloom lies La Calle Tacos & Tortas serving up Mexico City-style tacos at 909 Franklin Street. The menu features housemade tacos, tortas, tostadas, and aguas making for a great midnight snack after a eventful night at Lilly & Bloom.

Upper Kirby gains a new sports bar with On The Kirb at 5004 Kirby Drive. OTK is putting its unique stamp on the sports bar with a healthy, organic menu and brick oven pizzas. Of course, craft cocktails and brews are also available.

Côte d’Azur lands on Montrose with the opening of coastal French eatery Café Azur at 4315 Montrose Boulevard. Chef-proprietor Sidney Degaine showcases his French roots with dishes such as seared foie gras with crispy duck confit and cherry sauce; lobster ravioli topped with white truffle oil; whole roasted branzino served with sautéed vegetables and potatoes gratin; and Gulf shrimp fettuccine in armoricaine sauce. 

Get a taste of Spanish nightlife at La Marcha 43, a one-of-a-kind event hitting Houston for the second time on Thursday, October 13 from 8 to 11 pm. The best-selling Spanish liqueur in the world, LICOR 43, hosts the event at Batanga (908 Congress Street) where complimentary food and drinks are accompanied by festive sounds for a Spanish nightlife experience. To RSVP, click here.

Are you a self-proclaimed whiskey connoisseur? Rice Village eatery Punk’s Simple Southern Food partners Waco-based Balconies Distillery for a Texas whiskey dinner ($65) on October 26. Chefs Brandi Key and Nena Rieser present a four-course Southern comfort menu alongside whiskey pairings. For reservations, call 713.524.7865.

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