Restaurant News

Openings and Closings: Dinette Coming Soon, Revelry Will Close

These wings are getting their shine on.
These wings are getting their shine on. Photo by Dinette


Dinette, 1018 N. Shepherd, is expected to open next month. The highly-anticipated Vietnamese-inspired kitchen and bar is the creation of owners Jason Andaya and Ray Chan who also own and operate Hando and Kanpai Club.
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These summer rolls embody the season.
Photo by Dinette
With Executive Chef Cole Hoang leading the kitchen, the menu at Dinette will offer a variety of small to medium plates with delicious bites such as caramelized tamarind wings and its version of thit kho (Vietnamese braised pork) over sticky rice. Larger family-style dishes will include brisket with puffed pho noodles.

Co-owner Andaya says, "A 'dinette' is a small space for enjoying food and drinks and we feel like this word captures the spirit of our concepts, which is to welcome guests into intimate and discoverable dining rooms where they will experience excellent food, creative drinks and thoughtful service."
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We think the Jean Claude Pandan is a fabulously clever name for a cocktail.
Photo by Dinette
The 50-seat dining room will be a modern, industrial space accented with classic Asian touches. The seating will be a mix of traditional dining and bar-height communal tables along with spots at the full service bar. For cocktails, guests can expect a seasonally changing drink menu and playful concoctions that complement the bold flavors of the food menu. With names like the Jean-Claude Pandan and Jungle Jack Flash, guests know they are in for a good time.


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The revelry is almost over.
Photo by Revelry on Richmond
Revelry on Richmond, 1613 Richmond, will close July 31. Owner Ted Baker has decided not to renew the lease for the sports bar which first opened in Montrose in 2014. In a press release Baker said, "We'd like to thank our property manager Braun Enterprises and our loyal customers for making Revelry a huge success." Baker went on to say that he looks forward to serving the eclectic neighborhood with his other concepts, Pennywhistle Pub (located next door to Revelry at 1625 Richmond) and Bobcat Teddy's in the Heights.
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Belly up to the bar one last time at Revelry this month.
Photo by Revelry on Richmond
For the final month of service, Revelry will offer customer appreciation happy hour from 2 p.m. to 1 a.m. every Friday in July. There will also be a farewell party July 30 with details to be announced on its social media along with news about its guest bartending shifts with original staff members throughout the month. 
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The Srirancha brings all the Zealots to the yard.
Photo by Zalat Pizza
Zalat Pizza, 5750 Woodway, opens July 12 as the 5th Houston area location of the popular pizza chain known for its creative pies and from-scratch ingredients. With NYC-style crusts and house-made sauce, the brand has earned a cult following for its unique offerings such as Nashville Hot Chicken & Pickles, Elote and the Pho Shizzle. According to the company, its Srirancha dipping sauce, a mix of Sriracha and ranch dressing has a following of its own.

The new Woodway location will have limited seating, takeout and delivery through Zalat's website or app. It also offers delivery through most third party apps.
Spicy seafood and cold beer are a winning combination.
Photo by Crawfish Cafe
Crawfish Cafe, 8850 Metropark, celebrated its grand opening July 2 in the Shenandoah/Woodlands area. This is the fourth location for the Viet-Cajun concept which first opened in 2013. There are two other Houston area restaurants in Bellaire and the Heights plus a location in San Antonio.

It offers a number of seafood choices such as crawfish, shrimp, Little Neck clams, lobster (tail or whole), sea scallops, snow crab legs and mussels. Diners have a variety of sauces from which to choose including Kickin Cajun, Garlic Butter, Thai Basil, Lemon Pepper and its Coco Loco, a blend of coconut, citrus and garlic. Guests can pick their spice level, though the Reaper will cost an extra 50 cents.
Louisiana meets Vietnam at Crawfish Cafe.
Photo by Crawfish Cafe
There are also starters such as seafood gumbo, raw oysters, boudin balls and crawfish cheese bread. In addition to the seafood boils, there are selections from the Wok, fried platters and a selection of wings. Sodas, beer and margaritas are available as well.

The restaurant will also be hosting daily pop-ups for The Pho Fix until the pho bowl and banh mi concept opens next door in mid-2023. It has a previous location at Underground Hall in downtown Houston.

Rooster & Rice, 1223 W. 34th, had a grand opening June 9 at the Stomping Grounds. The San Francisco-based Thai concept was founded by lifelong restaurateurs Bryan Lew and Tommy Charoen. In 2019, the brand partnered with Aroi Hospitality Group (AHG) to expand the chain nationwide. It specializes in Khao Mun Gai, or Organic Thai-style Chicken Rice. The Houston location is its first outside of California.

The simple menu offers poached, organic chicken atop fragrant chicken rice. It's served with fresh chili, ginger, garlic and soybean sauce and garnished with cucumber and cilantro. It's also accompanied by a small side of chicken broth. Diners can choose all breast or a mix of breast and thigh meat, skin on or off. There is an organic brown rice option or a choice of seasonal vegetables. The Vegetarian has organic tofu instead of chicken.

The Houston location also offers chicken cutlets and popcorn chicken. Extra sauces are $1.95.

Chicken Kitchen, 3011 W. Grand Parkway N., opened May 16. This is the second location for the healthy chicken concept which also has a location at 2516 Rice Boulevard.

The menu includes its "World Famous Chop Chops" from its Original with grilled chicken breast over yellow rice to the Teriyaki with Asian-spiced chicken thigh meat and a sweet teriyaki glaze. There's also a Vegetarian version with black beans and rice. It offers Boneless Breast Platters served with pita bread and Roti-Grill Chicken in whole, half or quarter sizes. It also has several wrap options.

Yummy An Choi, 1223 Grand W. Boulevard, softly opened July 4 in Katy. It serves fusion street food with starters like Cha Oc (Vietnamese ham with periwinkle snails) and Cha Gio Re (netted egg rolls) There are street foods such as crispy Vietnamese-style crepes and Grilled Chicken Egg Laos-Style. The restaurant also offers chef's specials, meat skewers, hot pot and steamed seafood.

The small restaurant is still in soft opening mode and its popularity meant that it had to close for a couple of days to restock but it reopens July 8, according to its Facebook post.
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Strawberries and whipped cream hide a cheesecake underneath.
Photo by Jeff Balke
House of Pies, 20802 Katy Freeway, softly opened June 22.This is the 6th location for the Houston-based concept. It originally began in California in 1965 with Al Lapin Jr., the founder of IHOP.  It  opened its first franchise in Houston at 3112 Kirby in 1970 followed by another at 6142 Westheimer.

Operating as a busy breakfast and lunch spot and late night diner, it is also one of the go-to places for holiday desserts such as fruit, meringue and cream pies. The Bayou Goo is one of its best sellers with sweetened cream cheese, chopped pecans and a vanilla and chocolate custard swirl, all topped with whipped cream and chocolate shavings.

It has all the breakfast dishes that a diner should have plus a number of sandwiches from burgers to melts with chicken salad and po-boys in between. Lunch and dinner specialties include chicken pot pie, fish and chips, chopped steak and grilled pork chops.

Cava, 1501-C Bay Area Boulevard, opened mid-June, replacing the former Zoe's Kitchen concept. Cava acquired Zoe's Kitchen in 2018. While there are still some Zoe's locations open, many of them are transitioning into the Cava concept. The fast casual Mediterranean brand has locations in over 20 states with multiple stores in Texas and the Greater Houston area. Three more are planned for 4000 Washington, 10850 Louetta and 2162 Spring Stuebner, replacing previous Zoe's Kitchen stores.

Cava is a build-your-own concept which allows guests to choose a base from options such as salad greens, grains, pita and rice then build with dips and spreads like roasted eggplant, red pepper hummus, crazy feta and more. Protein choices include falafel, spicy meatballs, harissa honey chicken, roasted vegetables and braised lamb. Guests can add a variety of toppings before selecting one of the eight flavorful dressings.


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Hump Day is Caviar Wednesday at Tony's.
Photo by Jenn Duncan
Tony's, 3755 Richmond, launched its Caviar Wednesdays this week and guests can indulge in the bar or the dining room all day long each Wednesday. The cost is $125 and includes a half ounce each of Sasanian Imperial Osetra, Royal Osetra and Siberian Osetra. Diners may also add a half-ounce serving of Kaluga Gold for a $35 supplement. The accoutrements include silver dollar Yukon Gold blinis, baby brioche toast with sea urchin butter and creme fraiche, chopped egg yolk and fresh chives. Extra accoutrement plates are $15.

For a super posh (and fun) experience, guests can enjoy tableside bottle service with four shots of Grey Goose vodka served from an LED-lit ice block plus the caviar service for $160.
Andy and Paige Lujan are bringing a neighborhood pub to GOOF.
Photo by Dylan McEwan
The Upside Pub, 3402 N. Shepherd, is shooting to open later this summer in the Garden Oaks/Oak Forest area. In the meantime, it is partnering with Great Heights Brewing Company, 938 Wakefield, for Reverse Pint Night July 10 from 2 p.m. to 6 p.m. Guests will receive a raffle ticket with each pint purchased for Upside Pub swag including t-shirts, gift cards, koozies and pint glasses.

The new pub comes from husband and wife Andy and Paige Lujan and will be a cozy neighborhood hangout with 15 beers on tap and a rotating list of bottles and cans. There will be a small menu of bar bites and an all-weather patio.
It's not coming to Houston, but pretty close.
Rendering by Aria Group Architects
VERDAD True Modern Mexican is slated to open at The Grove in Austin, Texas in the summer of 2023. It comes from Houston-based Perry's Restaurants and will join its sister concept, CARVE American Grille, at the mixed use community which occupies 76 acres in the heart of Central Austin.

The restaurant will offer an elevated Mexican experience with modern touches to authentic dishes, inspired by Mayan, Aztec and Spanish cultures.

We asked if there were plans to open a VERDAD location in Houston and were told by a spokesperson, "We are always reviewing and considering expansion locations for our concepts."
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Lorretta Ruggiero is a Houston Press freelance writer based in Cypress, Texas. She loves entertaining her family and friends with her food and sparkling wit. She is married to Classic Rock Bob and they have two exceptionally smart-aleck children.