Openings & Closings: Familiar Faces Edition

Some familiar faces will soon be popping up around town, from the Heights to Montrose and back again, starting with the news that Olivier Ciesielski -- the former executive chef at Tony's -- will be opening his very own place in Montrose, right down the street from the now-closed Caffe Bello run by his old boss, Tony Vallone.

It may come as a surprise, considering the news that Ciesielski is also going to be the head chef at The Brownstone when it reopens shortly. But our source tells us that The Brownstone is just a stop-gap while Ciesielski works on getting his own restaurant open.

Meanwhile, Ricky Craig -- recent winner of our Best Use Of Twitter by a Restaurant award -- will soon be opening his second Hubcap Grill location on 19th Street in the Heights. The burger joint will join Christian's Tailgate, which is now officially open at 2820 White Oak, as two of the neighborhood's newest residents.

Also moving to the Heights? The second location of Sonoma Wine Bar, according to Swamplot. Look for it to open at the corner of 8th and Studewood next spring.

Good news for Outer Loop fans of craft cocktails after the jump.

A new craft cocktail bar has opened in the Galleria where Bice used to be at 5175 Westheimer. Prohibition is a 1920s-themed "speakeasy" complete with a speakeasy door at the entrance, but don't expect lower prices just because it's outside of the Loop. Prohibition has "Galleria" prices on its cocktails, which range from $8 for a basic Americano (called a Milano-Torino here) to $18 for a Sazerac. The $8 cocktails are intriguing, but the $18 aren't -- even if they're made with Tanqueray 10 gin or seasonal berries.

Perhaps the spirits program at Triniti will be more up our alley, but that's still pretty far down the road, as Swamplot pointed out when they drove by to see its construction progress and checked out its cool exterior metal work. Hurry up, Hildebrand! We want our Triniti.

Last but not least, Syd Kearney at 29-95 got us all hot and bothered with the descriptions of the hot dogs at the nearly open Sammy's Wild Game Grill, opening this month. Add that to the recently opened H-Town Bar & Grill, and Washington Avenue could be serious competition for the Heights in sheer number of new restaurants opening this year.

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