Liberty Kitchen alum and spicy heat enthusiast chef Travis Lenig has just opened his debut eatery Field & Tides Restaurant and Bar at 705 East 11th in the former Zelko Bistro space. The Houston native honed his chops from an early age, working at Dominic Mandola's Ragin’ Cajun, and moving for a brief period to Utah, where he cooked ranch food, before returning to town with stints at Ibiza and Mark's. Most recently he was an executive chef for F.E.E.D. Tx. At Liberty's Kitchen Heights, he met Christopher “Chico” Ramirez, a director of operations, who is now his business partner at Field & Tides.
On the menu at FTRB (as the signage calls it), Lenig serves an array of Southern-inspired eats from local land and sea, most of it just full-on comfort food: Pimento cheese fritters, smoked fish dip, pan-seared scallops with shrimp and crab meat risotto, duck breast over corn pudding with collards, roasted rack of venison.
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Much of the produce, including the vibrant roasted beets featured on a salad with chèvre and spiced Texas pecans, is sourced from Huckleberry Farms, which Lenig's in-laws run in Round Top, Texas.
The menu also offers dishes for kids, including chicken fingers and fish nuggets, and there's outdoor seating for 24, so you banish the rascals to outside if they dare make a stink in the 54-seat dining room.
On the beverage side, bar director Monique Hernandez has refashioned various classics, including a mule, an Old Fashioned and a "hot-ass take on a margarita." Also on hand: Texas beers and a wine list that runs 34 bottles dee. The restaurant also has plans to turn a small, adjacent gas station into a separate cocktail lounge in the very near future.
Field & Tides
705 East 11th, reservations at 713-861-6143, fieldandtides.com
Hours: Monday through Thursday, 11 a.m. to 10 p.m. Friday, 11 a.m. to 11 p.m., Saturday, 10 a.m. to 11 p.m., Sunday, 10 a.m. to 10 p.m.