After 37 years, Carmelo's will close for good on December 25, after serving its final Christmas Day Buffet Brunch. The Memorial-area restaurant, known for its Tower of Pisa salad, veal and seafood offerings and tableside Caesar and fettuccine carbonara, sent an email to friends that was then forwarded along to the Houston Press.
In the email, owner Carmelo Maura thanked his guests for dining at the restaurant, which first opened in 1981. In 1995 the restaurant, located in a former swimming pool factory, underwent a major revamp to look like a stylized piazza. Maura thanked his staff as well, noting :
Our culinary team and wait staff were just youngsters when we started back then and now they are awesome professionals and family men and women... We’ve seen them grow up, become who they wanted to be and raise a second generation of greatness. We’re so grateful and honored to have been witnesses of their stories and we’re sure they’ll do even greater things.
According to Eater Houston, the 32-year-old Austin location of Carmelo's also shuttered earlier this year, possibly because of rising property values.
Keep the Houston Press Free... Since we started the Houston Press, it has been defined as the free, independent voice of Houston, and we would like to keep it that way. Offering our readers free access to incisive coverage of local news, food and culture. Producing stories on everything from political scandals to the hottest new bands, with gutsy reporting, stylish writing, and staffers who've won everything from the Society of Professional Journalists' Sigma Delta Chi feature-writing award to the Casey Medal for Meritorious Journalism. But with local journalism's existence under siege and advertising revenue setbacks having a larger impact, it is important now more than ever for us to rally support behind funding our local journalism. You can help by participating in our "I Support" membership program, allowing us to keep covering Houston with no paywalls.