The popular barbecue team will open a brick and mortar in seven to eight months from now.
The popular barbecue team will open a brick and mortar in seven to eight months from now.
Photo courtesy of Blood Bros. BBQ

Openings & Closings: Blood Bros. BBQ Will Open Up Shop in Old Bellaire

One of the city’s most underrated barbecue teams signed a lease for a brick and mortar this past Monday. The Houston Chronicle reported that pop-up pit masters Blood Bros. BBQ will finally have a permanent home to showcase its meat and delicious not-your-average barbecue sides.

Brothers Robin and Terry Wong, along with partner Quy Hoang have been growing their fanbase by way of Wednesday night steak nights regularly at Glitter (the Wong’s karaoke venue in Midtown) and participating in local meat events like the Houston Barbecue Festival for years.

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According to the article, they’ve enlisted Felix Florez of Black Hill Meats and Ritual and Ryan Echiverri of NettBar as consultants and minor stakeholders. The restaurant will set up shop in the Bellaire Triangle Shopping Center at 5425 Bellaire and Robin Wong hopes to be open in seven or eight months.

Longtime Houston business Guy’s Meat Market at 3106 Old Spanish Trail is closing its doors. Late last week, the shop announced via Facebook that after 60 years in business, it will be closing for good on July 3.

The expansive restaurant and concert venue will open next to the George R. Brown.EXPAND
The expansive restaurant and concert venue will open next to the George R. Brown.
Rendering courtesy of Free Range Concepts

Back in September of last year, a manager of the Bowl & Barrel, a Free Range Concepts restaurant in City Centre, told the Houston Press about the eminent coming of The Rustic to Houston.

Last week, more news was finally released about the ground-breaking at 1836 Polk, next to the George R. Brown Convention Center. Kyle Noonan and Josh Sepkowitz of Free Range Concepts, along with partner and Texas Country music artist Pat Green, opened the original restaurant and music venue in Uptown Dallas in 2013.

“It’s been a long time coming, and I can’t wait to introduce my hometown of Houston to our one-of-a-kind concept,” said Noonan in a press release. Free Range Concepts currently operates two successful restaurants in City Centre, The General Public and adjoining Bowl & Barrel. The Rustic is expected to open by early summer 2018.

On June 26, Luke’s Icehouse announced through social media that its 903 Durham location has been sold. According to Houston Business Journal, owner Keith Lawyer plans to issue a more detailed statement soon.

There are two other Luke’s in the state, one in Beaumont and another in Nederland.

Bavarian Cakery and Chocolate Encore opened on June 14.EXPAND
Bavarian Cakery and Chocolate Encore opened on June 14.
Photo courtesy of Bavarian Cakery and Chocolate Encore

Bavarian Cakery and Chocolate Encore expanded to a second location on June 14 at 19010 FM 1488 in Magnolia. Owner Tara James Little offers cakes, cookies, cupcakes, macarons, coffee and small gift items in the shop, along with indoor and outdoor seating. Cake tasting and catering services are available by appointment at its original location, 8815 Solon, suite F2-3.

Restaurateur Mike Tran (of Tiger Den, Mein and Ohn) told the Press that Night Market will open again soon as a Thai restaurant. He said, “the Indian-forward menu was just not finding an audience (in this specific area), so he chose to close up shop temporarily to change the menu and redefine the space. Night Market will reopen soon with a Thai menu.” Expect to see Night Market Thai in the near future.

A choice of Ribeye Carpaccio or tuna tartare is complimentary with the purchase of two glasses of The Calling's wine.
A choice of Ribeye Carpaccio or tuna tartare is complimentary with the purchase of two glasses of The Calling's wine.
Photo courtesy of Smith & Wollensky

“Summer’s Calling” is what to order at Smith & Wollensky, 4007 Westheimer. The Highland Village steakhouse will feature wines by The Calling between June 28 and late August. Diners who purchase two glasses of The Calling wine will receive a choice of either the ribeye carpaccio and the tuna tartare.

The seared sea scallops on the summer menu at Seasons 52.
The seared sea scallops on the summer menu at Seasons 52.
Photo courtesy of Seasons 52

Seasons 52, at 4410 Westheimer in River Oaks, introduces a new summer menu that includes a watermelon and heirloom tomato salad, cedar plank-roasted salmon with roasted potatoes, and caramelized sea scallops with sweet corn risotto, snap peas and toybox tomatoes.

Local Woodlands deli, The Brooklyn Café celebrated the opening of a second location at 6606 FM 1488, suite 100, in Magnolia last month. The breakfast and lunch café has been in business in Houston for over 20 years.

Hours are Monday through Saturday from 6 a.m. to 4 p.m. and Sunday, 7 a.m. to 3 p.m.

Houston may soon be home to a market similar to Seattle’s famed Pike’s Place. Click2Houston reported that Canino’s Farmer’s Market, 2520 Airline, has been sold to MLB Partners, who have grand plans for the sixty-year-old, 20,000-square-foot space including “restaurants, a seafood market, cheese shop and space for cooking shows.” Bill Canino will continue to rent space from the new owners to operate Canino’s Produce.

Fast-casual Palette Indian Kitchen plans to open in Spring at 3555 Rayford, suite 200 by early September with a full menu, buffet, and beer and wine.

A tip from food lover Kerin Mayne alerted us to the closure of a long-time old Bellaire eatery. After 14 years, Roadster Grill announced on Facebook that June 26 would be its last night open. The neighborhood family restaurant served Greek fare at 5210 Bissonnet. Owner Nick Semoudiaris and his family have received hundreds of well wishes from regulars who will miss the classic Greek dishes and burgers.

A new owner has opened The Original Tony’s Seafood Shack at 17099 Walden, suite 110, in Montgomery. According to Community Impact, the original business closed in late 2016 and the new restaurant opened on June 8 with a menu that offers seafood items including jalapeno crawfish fritters, fried and seared seafood platters, sandwiches, salads and desserts.

MIne Thai Cuisine serves authentic Thai in Conroe.
MIne Thai Cuisine serves authentic Thai in Conroe.
Photo courtesy of Mine Thai Cuisine

Mine Thai Cuisine opened at 13080 Highway 105 West, suite 102, on May 1. The 2,200-square-foot restaurant offers authentic Thai food, including Tiger Cry, a marinated grilled top sirloin served with a spicy house made sauce, with full service in a bright and spacious dining room.

Fairfield Town Center in Cypress got a new Wingstop on June 14. The store at 28404 Highway 290, suite G17 specializes in a variety of sauced bone-in and boneless chicken wings.

Canadian-based fast-casual chain Smokehouse Sandwich Co. opened earlier this month in Humble at 9526 North Sam Houston Parkway East, suite 3113. The chain first opened in Vancouver in 2013.

Fresh fast-casual chain Chipotle Mexican Grill opened at 6615 North Grand Parkway West, suite 300, in Spring on June 22.

In a Facebook post, South Bank Seafood Bar announced that it would be soft opening this weekend starting on June 30. The former whiskey and burger restaurant known as The Refinery, at 702 West Dallas, had been undergoing cosmetic changes to the interior and exterior since its closure in May.

South Bank belongs to the Eighty Six’d hospitality group which also operates Bovine & Barley, Rose Gold, The Fish and HTX Fan Tavern in Houston.

Ray’s Real Pit BBQ Shack is moving from 4529 Old Spanish Trail to a larger location a mile closer to 288 on O.S.T. Co-owner Ray Busch told CultureMap Houston that he hopes to be open by Labor Day. The larger 3,500-square-feet space will allow for an expanded barbecue menu.

Austin-based JuiceLand will expand in Houston. The juice bar tweeted about the possibility of opening at locations on Montrose and Kirby. In April, Houstonia reported that a second store was in its future at 1340 Westheimer, but no opening date has been announced.

Hay Merchant and Underbelly’s plan to expand their beverage program has been delayed due to permitting issues. According to a press release, the restaurants hope to launch the new cocktail program by mid-July.

The prime filet steak at Roka Akor is exquisite.EXPAND
The prime filet steak at Roka Akor is exquisite.
Photo courtesy of Roka Akor

Roka Akor officially opened to the public on June 26. The nationally acclaimed restaurant is located on the ground floor of a luxury high-rise at 2929 Wesleyan. Early previews have diners oohing and ahhing over plating and presentation.

Roka Akor is open Monday through Friday for lunch service from 11:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. and dinner service between 5 p.m. and 11 p.m. Happy hour specials are available from 4:30 p.m. to 6 p.m.

The waterlemon salad is perfect for summer.EXPAND
The waterlemon salad is perfect for summer.
Photo courtesy of Sud Italia

Sud Italia in Rice Village introduces a summer menu of Mediterranean cuisine from Calabria, Campania, Basilicata and Sicily, including a watermelon salad, octopus carpaccio, and chilled spaghetti with shrimp, lemon and mint.

Bombshells, a Houston-based restaurant of RCI Hospitality Holdings is set to open in July at 14191 Northwest Freeway near Blalock. The military-themed sports bar will feature a menu of pub grub, multiple flat screens for sports-viewing, live entertainment and DJs.

According to the Chronicle, this location is the first of three planned for the Houston market, with Pearland and an I-10 expansion to come.

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.

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

Reported open or plans to open:
Akashi Asian Bistro and Sushi Bar, 12230 West Lake Houston Parkway, suite 200 - spring 2017
Aladdin Mediterranean Cuisine, RE:VIVE Development - unknown date at this time
Alice Blue, 250 West 19th - June 2017
Arby's, 8081 FM 723 - early 2018
Ascension, near 19th and Nicholson -July 2018
Avenida Brazil Churrascaria Steakhouse, 1400 Research Forest Drive - early July 2017
Baileson Brewery, 2322 Bissonnet - Labor Day, 2017
Bavarian Cakery and Chocolate Encore, 19010 FM 1488 - June 14, 2017
BB’s Cajun Kitchen, RE:VIVE Development - unknown date at this time
Blood Bro. BBQ, 5425 Bellaire - early 2018
Bombshells, 14191 Northwest Freeway - July 2017
Bravery Chef Hall, Aris Market Square Tower - unknown date at this time
Brewingz, 2850 Highway 290 - summer 2017
Chapman and Kirby, 2118 Lamar - June 1, 2017
Chipotle Mexican Grill, 6615 North Grand Parkway West, suite 300 - June 22, 2017
Coral Sword: CCG, 1318 Telephone - September 2017
Cousins Maine Lobster, 403 EATS Food Truck Park - June 1, 2017
Crafthouse Grill, 12910 Malcomson - early June 2017
Dickey’s Barbecue Pit, Interstate 10 and State Highway 146 - unknown date at this time
Dish Society’s, 12525 Memorial Drive - August 2017
Dot Coffee Shop, 12010 East Freeway - early June 2017
Flippin’ Pizza, 30340 FM 2978, suite 750 - summer 2017
Floyd's Cajun Seafood, 27126 Highway 290 - June 2017
Fuzzy’s Taco Shop, 8804 North Highway 146, suite 100 - fall 2017
Giant Leap Coffee, 3302 Canal Street - end of summer 2017
Indianola, 1201 St. Emanuel - unknown date at this time
Jambalaya King, 16430 West Lake Houston Parkway, suite 800 - May 19, 2017
Jonathan's The Rub, Memorial Green - spring or summer 2018
JuiceLand, 1340 Westheimer - unknown at this time
Koala Kolache, 14502 Spring Cypress, suite 300 - early June 2017
Kolache Shoppe, 1050 Yale - summer 2018
Krispy Kreme, 1470 West Broadway - summer 2017
Le Peep, 4340 Westheimer - will relocate in August or September, 2017
Lopez Mexican Restaurant, 7200 block of the West Grand Parkway - fall 2017
Lucky's Lodge, 2024 Rusk - June 24, 2017
McDonald's, 22914 Morton Ranch - June 24, 2017
Mine Thai Cuisine, 13080 Highway 105 West, suite 102 - May 1, 2017
Miss Carousel, 1201 St. Emanuel - unknown date at this time
Ohn Korean Eatery, 9630 Clarewood, suite A-16 - May 31, 2017
Paik’s Noodle, 9355 Long Point - early June 2017
Palette Indian Kitchen, 3555 Rayford, suite 200 - early September
Panda Express, 11939 North Grand Parkway East - mid June 2017
Roka Akor, 2929 Weslayan - June 26, 2017
Russo’s New York Pizzeria, 28610 Highway 290 - mid June 2017
Salata, 4523 Kingwood Drive - June 20, 2017
Sam's Boat, Stableside at Falcon Landing - early 2018
Seaside Poke, 2118 Lamar - early June 2017
Shack Burger Resort, 15719 Mueschke - June 10, 2017
Sideout Volleybar, 2623 Keene - June 1, 2017
Smallcakes Cupcakery and Creamery, 11200 West Broadway, suite 655 - late summer 2017
Smokehouse Sandwich Co., 9526 North Sam Houston Parkway East, suite 3113 - early June 2017
Snappy Salads, 1920 Fountain View - June 1, 2017
Snooze, an A.M. Eatery, 600 West Sam Houston Parkway North, suite 500 - June 21, 2017
South Bank Seafood Bar, 702 West Dallas - soft opened June 30, 2017
Sushigami, 5135 West Alabama Street - June 30, 2017
Tamashi Ramen & Sushi, 1106 Silber, suite D1 - June 8, 2017
Tarka Indian Kitchen, Market in Springwoods Village - September 2017
Texadelphia, 8383 Westheimer - mid August or September 2017
The Brooklyn Café, 6606 FM 1488, suite 100 - May 2017
The Hub Bistro, 8540 Creekside Forest, suite C100 - mid-June 2017
The Original Tony’s Seafood Shack at 17099 Walden, suite 110 - June 8, 2017
The Rustic, 1836 Polk - early summer 2018
Theodore Rex, 1302 Nance - date at this time
Third Gen Coffee, 25136 Grogans Park - June 5, 2017
Tilted Kilt Pub & Eatery, 2481 Gulf Freeway - June 19, 2017
Two Bowls Bun Bo Hue, 13080 Bellaire, suite A - June 1, 2017
Vinny's, 1201 St. Emanuel - unknown date at this time
Wingstop, 28404 Highway 290, suite G17 - June 14, 2017
Yong Kang Street, 5135 West Alabama Street - June 6, 2017
Zaxby’s, 28030 US Highway 290 - unknown date at this time

Reported closed or plans to close:
Hot Toppings Pizza, 7705 Westheimer - May 2017
Jerry Built Homegrown Burgers, 3501 West Holcombe - end of May, 2017
Jerry Built Homegrown Burgers, 10403 Katy Freeway - end of May, 2017
Midtown Drinkery, 2400 Bagby - end of July 2017
Niko Niko’s, 2805 Business Center - May 31, 2017
Orange Leaf, 4767 Sweetwater – early June 2017
Roadster Grill, 5210 Bissonnet - June 26, 2017
Swirll Frozen Yogurt, 11200 West Broadway, suite 430 - June 2017

The seared sea scallops on the summer menu at Seasons 52.
The seared sea scallops on the summer menu at Seasons 52.
Photo courtesy of Seasons 52

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