A favorite at La Vista is the beef tenderloin. After 19 years, the Briargrove area restaurant will be closing next spring.
A favorite at La Vista is the beef tenderloin. After 19 years, the Briargrove area restaurant will be closing next spring.
Photo courtesy of La Vista

Openings & Closings: Hello, Marriott Marquis, Hasta La Vista, La Vista!

After 19 years, La Vista, 1936 Fountainview, will close in late spring of 2017 and reopen at a new location thereafter, according to a press release. Owner Greg Gordon said, “this is an opportunity to create something big and to reshape the menu to fit our space and not the other way around.”

Each month leading up to the closure, Gordon plans to offer a past favorite menu item to highlight the restaurant’s history in Houston. “We want to showcase some of the classics along with throwback prices, dishes that people remember enjoying here back in the nineties,” he said.

A Facebook post announced the coming of a third Toasted Yolk Café. The new location is set to open in the summer of 2017 in the Target Shopping center at 6705 N Grand Parkway, suite 405, near Grand Parkway and Kuykendahl Road. The other two locations can be found at 15135 North Freeway in Houston and 2129 West Davis in Conroe. The café offers breakfast and lunch options including omelets, pancakes, French toast, waffles and sandwiches.

A second location of Laurenzo’s is opening in Midtown at the site of the former Republic Smokehouse Saloon. Construction has begun on Laurenzo’s Bar & Grill at 1910 Bagby, suite 100, and doors should be open by January 23. According to a reader’s tip, the restaurant will have a more “relaxed vibe than the Washington location.”

The Houston Press learned that Wicklow Heights has filed an application with TABC for a mixed beverage/late hours permit to operate at 1027 West 19th Street. A representative of the bar told us that they are “shooting for a mid-February opening.”

Cueva will open January 16 inside the Marriott Marquis downtown.
Cueva will open January 16 inside the Marriott Marquis downtown.
Photo by Ellie Sharp

Ellie Sharp of Eater Houston published additional photographs and details about the eateries and bars inside the newly opened and fabulous Marriott Marquis hotel downtown. The Press followed up with the hotel and a representative said that all of the places inside of the hotel opened for business on Monday this week except for one, Cueva. The elegant wine and cocktail bar boasting a selection of over 200 wines is slated to open on January 16. The menu at Cueva includes tapas and Mediterranean fare. Here’s a rundown of the other eateries now open inside the Marriott Marquis:

The resident coffee house is Texas T, which offers Starbucks coffee and tea, along with sandwiches, pastries, snacks, ice cream, wine and beer.

The bone-in ribeye at Biggio's inside the Marriott Marquis.
The bone-in ribeye at Biggio's inside the Marriott Marquis.
Photo courtesy of the Marriott Marquis Hotel

The two-leveled sports bar, Biggio’s named after Houston’s very own baseball legend, Craig Biggio is not a typical sports bar. The upscale eatery will feature steaks, burgers, wings along with craft beers, wine and cocktails. Astros memorabilia is displayed throughout and sports fans can eat, drink and catch games on multiple large screens in the dining and bar area.

An employee of the Marriott Marquis told the Press that one of her favorite meals has been at the new Walker Street Kitchen, where she enjoyed a delicious burger. She added that the menu reminded her of the rodeo here in Houston. The restaurant is casual and offers Texas country fare for breakfast, lunch and dinner.

An aerial view of the hotel's signature Texas-shaped lazy river pool on the fourth floor.
An aerial view of the hotel's signature Texas-shaped lazy river pool on the fourth floor.
Photo courtesy of Marriott Marquis Hotel

Perhaps, the most anticipated area to open within the Marriott Marquis is the Texas-shaped lazy river on the fourth floor. While enjoying time at the spa, fitness center or pool area, guests can dine and drink at High Dive. The outdoor bar and grill serves sandwiches, burgers, grilled chicken, salads along with cocktails and beer.

According to the Houston Business Journal, a new type of country club is coming to Sienna Plantation near the intersection of Sienna Ranch Road and State Highway 6. The Brazos Shooting & Social Club is scheduled to open in early 2018 offering a more high-end experience for gun enthusiasts to “gather with their families and friends to enjoy target practice, dining and other recreational activities, all in a safe and secure environment,” said Jay Loftis, president of Texas Sawdust & Guns (developers behind the project).

A business under the name of Liberty Taco has filed for a building permit at 4703 Richmond, where Nit Noi used to stand on Richmond just inside the loop. A tip from a reader informed us of signage on the building, but no additional information is available at this time.

A press release on December 22 announced the opening of a new Panda Express in the Valley Ranch Town Center in northeast Houston at I-69 and the Grand Parkway just north of Kingwood. It is the first restaurant to open in the 1.5 million square feet of mixed-use and retail development space. Panda Express is a family-owned business with over 1,900 locations throughout the U.S., Puerto Rico, Guam, Canada, Mexico, Dubai, Saudi Arabia, Japan and Korea.

Now, here’s a review of the Openings and Closings that were reported in December:

Reported Opened or Plans to Open:

Abuelo's, 24600 Katy Freeway, Suite 1020 - February 2017
Atlas Pub, 5102 Washington - grand opening in December 2016
BB's Café, 1275 Eldridge Parkway - Winter 2017
Biggio's, 1777 Walker inside the Marriott Marquis - mid December 2016
Burgerim, The Boardwalk at Towne Lake in Cypress - early January 2017
Chick-fil-A Food Truck - December 15, 2016
Cooking Girl, 636 Highway 6, suite 100 - December 2016
Cueva, 1777 Walker inside the Marriott Marquis - January 16, 2017
Dizzy Kaktus, 301 Main - December 12, 2016
El Gato Coffeehouse, 508 Pecore - April or May 2017
First Watch Daytime Café, 20220 Katy Freeway - December 12, 2016
Fusion Taco , 4706 North Main - January 2017
Golden Corral, 27940 Southwest Freeway in Rosenberg - November 28, 2016
Grotto, 1001 Avenida de las Americas - January 2017
High Dive, 1777 Walker inside the Marriott Marquis - mid December 2016
Kitchen 713, 4601 Washington, suite 130 - reopened in new location, December 26, 2016
Lady Liberty (Liberty Station Food Truck) - by end of 2016
Liberty Taco, 4307 Richmond - unknown at this time
Laurenzo's Bar & Grill, 1910 Bagby, suite 100 - January 20, 2017
Moody Ice, 1919 North Shepherd - early November 2016
Night Market Curry & Grill, 9630 Clarewood, suite A12 - December 6, 2016
NOLA Poboys, 1333 Old Spanish Trail - by mid-January 2017
Ono Poke, 607 Richmond - end of 2016
Osaka Café, 2802 South Shepherd - end of December
Panda Express, Valley Ranch Town Center - December 22, 2016
Pinch Seafood & Bar, 10510 Northwest Freeway - January 15, 2017
Pinkerton's Barbecue, 1504 Airline - December 10, 2016
Raising Cane's Chicken Fingers, 9530 Main - late February 2017
Shake Shack, Tal's Hill inside Minute Maid Park - next MLB Season
Sugar Refinery, 2248 Texas Drive in Sugar Land - January 2017
Tacos a Go-Go, 3401 West TC Jester - November 8, 2016
Texas T, 1777 Walker inside the Marriott Marquis - mid December 2016
The Branch Craft Beer & Foodery, 7710 Long Point - early spring 2017
The Garage Car Detail & Hookah Lounge, 1818 West Dallas - mid November 2016
The Taproom at Harold's Restaurant & Taproom, 315 West 19th - December 7, 2016
Tiny’s Milk & Cookies, 3636 Rice - November 14, 2016
Toasted Yolk Café, 6705 N Grand Parkway suite 405 - summer 2017
Torchy's Tacos, Tal's Hill inside Minute Maid Park - next MLB Season
Upstairs at Hungry's in Rice Village, 2356 Rice Boulevard - December 31, 2016
Walker Street Kitchen, 1777 Walker inside the Marriott Marquis - mid December 2016
Wicklow Heights, 1027 West 19th Street - mid February 2017
Yauatcha, 5045 Westheimer - Spring 2017
Yokushi Robata, 3837 Richmond - soft opened, November 19, 2016
Zaxby's, 8722 Barker Cypress - December 5, 2016

Reported Closed or Plans to Close:

Alamo Drafthouse at Vintage Park - December 9, 2016
Alcaliente, 20210 Katy Freeway - December 2016
Allie's Pizzaria, 315 West 19th - December 7, 2016
Black & White, 1001 Studewood - November 28, 2016
BLU, 2248 Texas Drive in Sugar Land - November 26, 2016
Canard, 4721 North Main - December 21, 2016
El Tiempo, 21810 Kingsland in Katy - closed due to fire, November 23, 2016
Foreign Correspondents, 4721 North Main - December 20. 2016
La Vista, 1936 Fountainview - late spring 2017
Mockingbird Bistro, 1985 Welch - end of December, 2016
Oxheart, 1302 Nance - March 2017
Sherlock’s Baker St. Pub, 2416 Bay Area, suite D - November 17, 2016
Skewers Mediterranean Grill, 3991 Richmond - early December 2016
Stoked Tacos & Tequila, 2416 Brazos - early December 2016
The China Star, 4711 Calhoun - December 17, 2016

That's it for this week's restaurant openings and closings! Leave us a comment or send us an email to let us know if we missed something.

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