Restaurant News

Openings & Closings: El Cantina Superior Gets New Owners and Menu

This one is something of a closing and a re-opening: a press release from restaurant group F.E.E.D TX says they are partnering with Ken Bridge of Delicious Concepts restaurant group to make over El Cantina Superior, which was apparently struggling. (It was the site of the Houston Press Tequila & Tamales throwdown that was held a mere two weeks ago.). F.E.E.D TX's other projects include Liberty Kitchen & Oysterette as well as BRC, which Delicious Concepts is behind places such as Witchcraft Tavern and Pink's Pizza. The restaurant, located at 602 Studewood near Fitzgerald's, will relaunch with a new menu in place late next week. A representative from F.E.E.D TX says the menu, "will be Tex-Mex with our view of how food should be done. Don't be surprised to see a chicken fried steak on the menu or a juicy, delicious burger." 

Culturemap Houston reports that Ladybirds, a new bar taking over the space where The Usual used to be at 5519 Allen between I-10 and Washington, is set to open within the next week or two. The place doesn't have a kitchen, so it's planning to use a food truck to cook in and have asked for help from former Underbelly sous chef Lyle Bento and his business partner Charles Bishop (also known for bars Cottonwood and Liberty Station). Bento will be running the food program.

Bento and Bishop already had restaurant Southern Goods in the works, so there were immediately some concerns that maybe that project had been delayed. Houston Press contacted Bento yesterday and he confirms that those plans have not changed. He's just going to be one very busy chef.

The section of the Highway 59 feeder near Kirby has become a rough place for nearly every restaurant except for Twin Peaks, it seems. Nosh Bistro closed (but did reopen later as Ruggles Black), Haven closed and now Culturemap Houston writes that the longstanding Café Japon has closed as well. The theory, though, is that Café Japon has found new life in EaDo as Japon Café. This possible successor has already opened at 2012 Rusk.

Everyone rejoice, because traditional Chicago-style pizza became available in The Woodlands yesterday. Eater Houston says that Gino's East is now open at 25657 I-45 North. There's a second location planned for the Willowbrook area in the first quarter of 2015.

New York-style Korean fried chicken place Dak & Bop is now open at 1801 Binz (next door to Bosta) and consumers seem to like it a great deal. There are already 22 Yelp reviews. The rating? Four stars. Not bad for a place that's barely gotten their feet wet.

Russo's New York Pizzeria has opened its twentieth Houston-area location next to NRG Stadium. The new location of the rapidly-expanding homegrown chain is at 8236 Kirby. (Coincidentally, we just did a Chef Chat with owner Tony Russo this week that you might want to check out.)

The Houston Chronicle reports that Houston barbeque favorite Gatlin's is expanding to a bigger location. The current Gatlin's often has lines out the door of people after their great ribs and amazing dirty rice. They're signing a lease for 3510 Ella, which according to Google is currently is the site of a self-storage facility. This is in addition to the project they're already working on in conjunction with Bill Floyd and chef Brian Caswell.

What did we miss? Let us know in the comments below and we may include your tip in next week's post. You can also email us with your insider info.

KEEP THE HOUSTON PRESS FREE... Since we started the Houston Press, it has been defined as the free, independent voice of Houston, and we'd like to keep it that way. With local media under siege, it's more important than ever for us to rally support behind funding our local journalism. You can help by participating in our "I Support" program, allowing us to keep offering readers access to our incisive coverage of local news, food and culture with no paywalls.
Phaedra Cook
Contact: Phaedra Cook