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First Look at Morton's Grille

The more casual sister of Morton's the Steakhouse.

EOW: Do you have a favorite Thai dish that you're hoping to put on the menu?

CC: I can't really go into the menu yet, but I love the pork shank and the sunny-side-up egg from Midnight Sticky Rice.

EOW: If you had to open another regional cuisine after this, what would it be?

The Morton's take on a pastrami Reuben and braised beef short rib slider.
Photos by Kaitlin Steinberg
The Morton's take on a pastrami Reuben and braised beef short rib slider.
high-backed leather booths offer elegance and privacy.
Photos by Kaitlin Steinberg
high-backed leather booths offer elegance and privacy.

CC: Oh man! I don't know. A really major factor that we consider all the time is where we are. I complain almost every single day about the eating options in the Heights. There's a lot of room to grow; I love and want to defend the Heights. I was born and raised there, and I live there now. So it'll be something different, whatever we come up with.
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Restaurant News

Openings and Closings
Coffee shops galore, goodbye Chili Shak & more.

Molly Dunn

More than halfway into the month of September and only a few restaurants have shut their doors, but lots of places have opened. Let's get the bad news over with first.

As reported on Swamplot and Food Chronicles from the Houston Chronicle (anyone else notice the name change?), Landry's Seafood House on Westheimer served its final meal on September 15. The reason? They lost their lease. The building's landlord said it was sold to an apartment builder. The restaurant has been in the same location for the past 20 years. According to franchise spokesmen, that location, as well as other buildings on the same 4.5-acre site, will be demolished. Landry's is looking for another space, and employees of the closed restaurant will be relocated to other Landry's concepts.

B4-U-Eat mentions that a few restaurants have closed over the week. CHA Champagne & Wine Bar on Waugh closed, and B4-U-Eat reported that a an Irish pub will soon occupy that space. Golden Sea Restaurant Seafood in Kemah also closed, but B4-U-Eat reports that the related retail/wholesale operation called Golden Seafood remains open.

The Chili Shak on Fondren also appears to be closed. While there's nothing on the Facebook page or the restaurant's Web page to indicate its operating status, the restaurant's phone number is no longer in service.

It seems that Nosh Bistro is temporarily closed for renovations and, possibly, menu alterations. As noted by the Chronicle, the restaurant's windows are covered with brown paper, and a note has been placed on the door stating that the restaurant will soon announce new hours. It also urges patrons to have patience, because the owners "are bringing about the exciting new session." More news to come on Nosh Bistro.

That's it for closings; let's get to the exciting news.

Fielding's Wood Grille, located in The Woodlands, officially opened September 12. The restaurant will serve wood-grilled and rotisserie foods along with "innovative" milkshakes and "progressive" salads. There's no menu online, but from the vague descriptions, one can't help but be intrigued about what a "progressive" salad actually is.

Morton's Grille, also in The Woodlands, officially opened last week. Check out what Kaitlin Steinberg had to say about her first experience at the Morton's spin-off restaurant. Hint: Steak is still on the menu, and it's quite good.

Coffee shops seem to be popping up all over the place lately. Rice Village will have two more by the middle of September. CultureMap's Eric Sandler visited the most recent opening, Mercantile, and explains that customers not only can get a cup of joe, but also can purchase groceries from local producers. Mercantile will sell beer and wine once it receives its license.

Fellini Cafe, a "true" Italian coffee shop, opened this week in Rice Village. Co-owners Paolo Fronza and Salvatore Albelice told Eater's Darla Guillen that they decided to open because they "missed the atmosphere of an Italian coffee shop." They said Rice Village was the perfect location "because it's the only area in Houston where people actually walk." The coffee bar will offer an aperitivo menu from 4 to 8 p.m. that will include a complimentary rosticceria (small bites) with every glass of wine or beer. Fellini Cafe will serve other items including pastries, paninis and salads.

Keep an eye out for another coffee and wine bar in Rice Village; according to one of our commenters in our September 6 Cheap Eats In Houston report, Rosinka should be opening in a few months.

Cork Cafe Wine & Beer opened a couple of weeks ago in Cypress, as noted by commenter Brandy Graesser, who happens to be the executive chef there. The restaurant will be open for lunch and dinner throughout the week and will serve dinner on Saturdays. The wine bar offers more than 40 wines by the glass and 150 by the bottle.

Two weeks ago, Coppa Osteria opened for a media dinner, and on September 11 the laid-back yet fancy Italian restaurant welcomed the public.

Thanks to commenters on last week's Cheap Eats In Houston report, we have information about a few new restaurants. Lagniappe Seafood Sports Lounge opened on Highway 6 South on September 6. According to our commenter, the sports bar is open until 1 or 2 a.m. most nights of the week and offers a multitude of fried seafood dishes, as well as daily lunch specials.

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