The big news of the day comes from Hunter-Gatherer, a new restaurant imported directly from restaurateur Nigel Mycroft and his partner, Samuel Mburu, of Kenya. The duo have been running a restaurant called, simply, Safari just outside of Nairobi since 2008, and they've recently decided to expand to the United States, with their first international outpost slated to open here in Houston in early 2015.
As the name implies, it's a hyper-local joint seeking to raise awareness of where food comes from; it will feature a massive backyard garden from which customers can harvest their own fruits and vegetables to be used in their meals. Oh yeah, and you can hunt your own dinner, too.
The press release from Mycroft and Mburu doesn't detail exactly how this works (or how it's legal), but from what we can gather (pun intended), the restaurant will sit in one corner of a 300-acre patch of land home to deer, wild hogs, raccoon, nutria, squirrels, ducks, guinea hen and rattlesnake. Diners who pay a lofty fee will then be able to hunt for their own dinner, retrieve any kills, deliver them to the kitchen for butchering and later dine on just about the freshest meat imaginable. If hunting isn't your thing, you can wander the garden and dig up fresh onions and carrots, pick some salad greens and squeeze the peaches until you find the perfect fruit for your dessert.
Diners will, of course, need to arrive at the restaurant approximately two hours before they would like to eat. If, for some reason, they do not want to hunt or are unable to kill anything, the restaurant will sell cuts of meat left over from other customers. Should you engage in hunting, though, you will have the option of bringing your own firearms or using one of the various weapons at the restaurant, including bow and arrow.
"The concept has been incredibly successful in Nairobi, where visitors like to see exactly where their food is coming from," Mycroft says in the press release. "We believe that it will work just as well in the United States, where eating local is becoming increasingly popular."
He adds that Texas was a logical choice for the new restaurant because the climate allows for a long growing season and "Texans are great and notorious hunters."
The press release notes that the restaurant and accompanying wildlife area will begin construction soon just outside of Katy. The owners hope it will become a tourist attraction and increase people's knowledge of how food gets from the farm (so to speak) to the table, while simultaneously rejecting meat from factory farms, which Mycroft calls "despicable, inhumane and unhealthy."
Mycroft tells us the restaurant will open on April Fools' Day in 2015.