Restaurants / Openings

New Sophisticated Tequila Bar and Restaurant Shakes Up Houston’s Downtown Scene — Your First Look at Real Agave Lounge

Longtime H-Town Restaurateur Bill Floyd and Hines Team Up

BY // 09.13.22

We love it when a glass is half full. Despite the rash of pandemic-induced restaurant closures that have still affected downtown Houston, successful restaurateur Bill Floyd (Porto’Vino, Potente plus many others) has joined 1100 Louisiana in opening an upscale tequila bar and restaurant in the building lobby. And it’s a gem.

The doors will officially open on Wednesday, September 14 on the uber chic Real Agave Lounge, where Floyd has assembled a stable of 70 tequilas, plus all the premium whiskeys and scotches that a discerning business executive could want. And with just enough sophisticated Tex-Mex offerings to satisfy almost any palate.

Make no mistake, this is not your El Tiempo romper room.

At the behest of and the offer of a rather good deal from Mark Janssen, director of property management for Hines, Floyd was convinced that Janssen’s vision of a sophisticated tequila bar was viable.

How sophisticated is it? How about the $185 a glass Clase Azul Ultra Extra Anjeo Tequila?

Beyond the stock of fire water, the design is impressive thanks to the talent of Gensler’s Jerry Alexander. The decorative theme is a soothing blue with natural woods, leather upholstery and whimsical Day of the Dead murals above the bar and in the vaulted ceiling that runs between a private room and some secluded booths.

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Real Agave Lounge brings distinctive decor — and some serious tequila.

Chef Derrick Cooper, who ran Floyd’s Jackson Street Barbecue before Houston Astros owner Jim Crane opted to turn its space into a much-needed parking lot, heads the kitchen. And the barbecue joint’s staff is on board for the Real Agave Lounge kitchen.

“He had the chance to elevate this,” Floyd tells PaperCity. “Because we didn’t want this to be straight up Tex-Mex. You know, nachos and enchiladas. So he’s elevated the food to a really amazing quality.”

At the moment, the menu is limited to eight items.

“We’ve got about 15 items that we want to roll out but we’re going to start with eight because I want them to be perfect,” Floyd says.

Real Agave Lounge’s Downtown Impact

While downtown Houston remains at around 64 percent office occupancy overall, the Enterprise Products building boasts 2,700 employees in various companies when all employees are present.

“A lot of the tenants have already been contacting us about private happy hours,” Jassen says. “It’s a great opportunity for visitors and companies that need to fill down time between appointments or flights out of town.

“It’s going to add a different dimension to the building so we are excited about it.”

For the initial run, Real Agave Lounge will be open Mondays through Fridays from 3 pm to 8 pm to capture the after-work market. In the coming months, the boite also will open for lunch.

And then there is the possibility of private parties on weekends. The lounge can host 100 guests for food and drinks. Floyd is already planning his birthday party here.

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