Openings & Closings
Short ribs with chimichurri sauce at Tango & Malbec.
Photo by Groovehouse
Last night saw the grand opening of Houston's newest South American restaurant, the oddly named Tango & Malbec (2800 Sage, 713-629-8646). No, it's not a supper club with cheesy dancers; it's an Argentinean establishment run by an expat from Patagonia that focuses less on traditional Buenos Aires cuisine and more on that of the Rio de la Plata area, combining Uruguayan influences with Argentinean. We sent a photographer to last night's grand opening; check out our slideshow for more pictures of the food and wine Tango & Malbec has in store.
Also open in that neck of the woods is Cafe España (7519 Westheimer), a traditional Spanish restaurant serving actual Spanish food besides tapas. This means empanadas, crepes salados (savory crepes), tortitas and my favorite, tortilla española (no, it's not the tortilla you're thinking of). EOW reader and Twitter follower Ashley Whitney reports, however, after an initial visit that the restaurant may need a little while to get its sea legs.
Are you a hula fan? Head to Humble. No, really. Hula Mama's (8550 FM 1960 Bypass Road West, 281-710-7110) has opened to the delight of Tiki fans everywhere. Although I understand that it's been open for several months now, we've missed it in previous Openings & Closings posts, which just won't do. Not for a restaurant that has regular pig roasts, luaus and Elvis Blue Hawaii specials. If you've been, let us know about your visit in the comments section below.
In closings, the Vallone family lost a member of its tribe when Amici (16089 City Walk) closed in Sugar Land unexpectedly. Over email, Jeff Vallone said that it had been a pleasure serving the Sugar Land community. "I'll get something 'cooking' soon enough," he continued, when asked about future plans. "I am going to focus on Caffe Bello and Ciao Bella for now. They're a little closer to home, and I really enjoy and have missed working closely with my Dad...at the end of the day it's family that matters most to me!"
So much for that Best Margarita award in the 2010 Best of Houston issue. Sugarcane (1919 Washington), which held the title this year, is now closed, although one has to wonder exactly how long the organic cocktail bar was really going to stick around anyway. (Remember when it was going to be called Bee Love? What was that?) Most Houstonians were still upset over the fact that its owners closed popular wine bar The Corkscrew to open Sugarcane in the first place, and very few people warmed to the new concept.
With that said, owners Andrew and Doyle Adams are set to reincarnate the bar they never should have closed in the first place and told Culture Map that they're reopening Corkscrew in the Heights in 2011. They're leasing the old Sugarcane space to another club owner in the meantime.
Also opening in the Heights soon, alongside the second location of Hubcap Grill, will be the second location of Tacos A Go-Go at 2912 White Oak between Fitzgerald's and Onion Creek. According to its Twitter page, the restaurant hopes to open this second location in spring 2011.
Get the Food & Drink Newsletter
Our weekly guide to Houston dining includes food news and reviews, as well as dining events and interviews with chefs and restaurant owners.