Restaurant News

Comings and Goings

Because so little went on by way of restaurant openings or closings and so much went on by way of personnel changes at some of Houston's most high-profile restaurants, we're shifting focus this week.

First up is the news that Robert Gadsby, the executive chef and co-owner of upscale Heights restaurant Bedford, is out. Rumors were swirling for at least a month before his departure, while Gadsby took pains to quelch any rumblings. But on Wednesday night, Channel 13 reporter Miya Shay seemed to confirm his exit on Twitter: "Oh where, oh where has Chef Gadsby gone? To bed, or elsewhere?" Local food blogger Jenny Wang followed up later with this tidbit of information: "Confirmed by 3 reliable sources: Gadsby was walked out of Bedford today by the investors." But the official scoop came from the Houston Chronicle's Alison Cook in her blog. According to Cook, sous chef Joe Shead will take over in Gadsby's absence. It's going to be a tough row to hoe for a restaurant that was founded entirely on Gadsby's presence and cooking style. And no one seems to quite know what Gadsby will do next (especially Gadsby himself, one would presume).

Meanwhile, another upscale restaurant, Gravitas, is suffering the loss of its talented chef, Jason Gould. Gould announced his resignation via Twitter on August 8. An interview on Cleverley Stone's radio show on 650 AM shed more light on the situation: Gould was frustrated that he hadn't been given part ownership in Gravitas and was choosing to part ways with owner Scott Tycer, who also owns/runs Textile and Kraftsmen Bakery. A follow-up interview in the Examiner with Tycer himself revealed his side of the story. The last day to catch Gould at Gravitas will be August 27, so grab a last supper from the man while you still can.

In other restaurant news, Houston Restaurant Week has been extended for an addtional week (this makes three weeks in total; perhaps they should make it Houston Restaurant Month  next year). Fifty-two restaurants will be holding over their $35 three-course prix fixe menus -- $5 of which goes to support the Houston Food Bank -- until August 31. A full list of participating restaurants can be found here.

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Katharine Shilcutt