The weekend is fast approaching, and that means more time to eat out. Maybe you're hoping to seek out a seat at one of the best new spots in town. Perhaps carve out a new favorite eatery or two? It's definitely hard to keep track of all the new restaurants opening in the Bayou City these days, that's for sure, but these four Houston newcomers all just debuted in the past week and are the hottest tickets in town.
Prepare to stand in line at this new Montrose location of Austin's beloved noodle spot Ramen Tatsu-Ya. People are already losing their minds, thanks to the cred that chefs/owners/hip-hop DJs Tatsu Aikawa and Takuya “Tako” Matsumoto bring to the new joint. Aikawa honed his chops at Michelin-starred L.A. restaurant Urasawa, before opening the flagship with Matsumoto in 2012. On top of its signature tonkotsu ramen, the restaurant also offers a vegetarian version and a menu of appetizers as well. Weekend hours: Daily, 11 a.m. to 10 p.m.
The new Heights eatery is full of locally sourced Southern charm and a menu that evokes lazy days spent on the front porch. Here, chef Travis Lenig (formerly of Liberty Kitchen fame) turns out pimento cheese fritters, juicy racks of venison, a hearty duck confit over corn pudding with smothered greens and much more. On the drinks side, you're looking at a bevy of classic riffs from bar director Monique Hernandez. Try her spicy margarita, the Angel Gunsel, or the smoky, frothy mezcal sipper, the El Vaquero. Outdoor seating is available, and kids are welcome (in fact, they have their own menu). Weekend hours: Friday, 11 a.m. to 11 p.m.; Saturday, 10 a.m. to 11 p.m.; Sunday, 10 a.m. to 10 p.m.
Restaurateur Charles Bishop (formerly of Southern Goods) and chef Adam Dorris (formerly of Pax Americana) bring modern Houston cuisine to this casual Heights spot, where dining outside — whether you choose the spacious backyard with live music or the front covered patio with its charming plant life — is the name of the game, with meaty options ranging from braised goat empanadas to a chicken-fried steak, burger and prime rib, all sourced from 44 Farms. On the booze side, you're looking at an impressive tap list, on-trend cocktails and a fairly deep wine selection with great finds from the West Coast and abroad. Weekend hours: Friday and Saturday, 5 to 11 p.m. (bar open until 2 a.m.) and Sunday, 5 to 10 p.m.
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Whiskey-lovers are in for a treat with the opening of this new Westheimer eatery from Newport Beach, California, import Bosscat, opened by recent Houston transplants JT Reed, Leslie Nguyen and Vinnie Capizzi, on February 22. The restaurant features pub grub in the form of pork belly poutine, Cajun brick chicken and more meaty items, plus more than 260 different whiskeys and barrel-aged cocktails served at the 360 degrees center bar. Seating for 260 is available inside or on the patio. Weekend hours: Friday and Saturday, 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. Sunday brunch to come.