Openings and Closings in Houston: Helen's Baby Brother, Arthur

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Helen Greek Food & Wine was undoubtedly one of the best new restaurants of last year; it was even a semifinalist in the James Beard Awards' Best New Restaurant category. Hot on the heels of that opening, the same team is already planning a new restaurant called Arthur Ave Italian American, which will be located at 1111 Studewood and should open this summer. Check out our feature on the story for more details.

The newest concept from Eatsie Boys' Matt Marcus and Hospitality USA's Pablo Gomez, Restless Palate, at 2643 Commercial Center in Katy, is now open. In contrast to the scrumptious-but-oh-so-greasy fare you might find on the Eatsie Boys food truck, this restaurant is all about eating richly and healthily, with offerings like herb-grilled salmon with kale and quinoa. There are a few indulgent items on the menu, though, like a chocolate cake with cheesecake balls inside.

Cullen's American Grill & Whisk(e)y Bar at 11500 Space Center has announced its immediate closure, in part because of the passing of general manager Ryan Roberts last fall. The owners have decided to repurpose the space into a health-care facility.

Popular brunch destination Dish Society is bringing its farm-to-table goodness to Memorial; the eatery has announced that it will open another location, at 12525 Memorial in the Memorial Green development, sometime around spring 2017. Management also has plans to open three additional locations by the end of 2018.

Harold's Restaurant, Bar and Terrace at 350 West 19th has announced a new addition to the restaurant. Harold's Tap Room, a relaxed bar and lounge located beneath the second-floor eatery, will be opening sometime this summer in the former Heights General Store space. The drinks will include boutique wines, craft beers and infused cocktails, and there will be a food menu of light, Southern-style bites.

Another announcement this week was the eminent arrival of Whiskey Cake Kitchen & Bar, a Dallas-based eatery that serves modern American fare and whiskey cocktails. Whiskey Cake reportedly bought property in Katy after a deal for a Hughes Landing location fell through.

On Monday, April 11, Enoteca Rossa Ristorante Italiano will celebrate its grand opening at 4566 Bissonnet with four weeks of freebies. For the first week, you can get a free, freshly baked pastry with any coffee or espresso purchase.

Texas's favorite cookie delivery service, Tiff's Treats, will unveil its location at 1620 Research Forest on Saturday, April 16. On opening day, cookies will be $5 per dozen, and proceeds will go to the Connor Man Foundation, which seeks to end a rare type of cancer that affects children. 

Food truck OffBeat Eatz is now serving an offbeat twist on burgers, pizza, fries and other classic American fare, according to the truck's website. You'll find the truck's calendar on the site as well, which includes a few upcoming stops at No Label Brewing and 777 Post Oak.

Last week, we reported on the unfortunate closure of another food truck; the Los Dos Vaqueros taco truck was stolen from its home at 1234 Sheldon in Channelview. This week, we're happy to be able to tell you that the owner's Go Fund Me page has raised enough money to allow her to rent a truck and get back to business. However, she's still below her goal of $5,000, which would allow her to purchase a new truck to replace her old one, so if you haven't yet, consider chipping in a few bucks for a fellow Houston foodie.

As the Houston Galleria's Saks Fifth Avenue moves to its new home next door (also in the Galleria), it will be taking its restaurant, 51fifteen, with it. Both the restaurant and the store will close at the original location, 5115 Westheimer, on April 20 and open in the new location, at 5175 Westheimer, on April 28. And, no, the restaurant's name will not change to accommodate the change in address.

Hughes Landing in The Woodlands has a new tenant: Truluck's Seafood Steak & Crab House, a national brand of top-notch seafood restaurants that prides itself on sustainable seafood, opened its first Houston location at 1900 Hughes Landing this week.

Calamari's Bar at 5111 Washington has closed, but Saul Obregon isn't going to let the space go to waste for long; the owner of La Macro Food Truck, which currently resides at The Raven Tower, 310 North, will be opening a brick-and-mortar of his popular truck in the space, including a beer and liquor bar. He also plans to keep the restaurant open until 4 a.m. each day to appeal to the late crowd on Washington Avenue. There's no exact opening date for the new concept, but Obregon says it will be open very soon.

Yelpers have reported that Houston newcomer Anju, 510 Gray, has already closed and the phone number is disconnected; the Japanese eatery opened less than six months ago. The Yelp-o-sphere also says that Hong Kong Chef at 5112 Bissonnet in Bellaire is closed as well, almost certainly because of the enormous H-E-B that will soon be taking up the land that Hong Kong Chef sits on.

713-Juice-Bar is open at 14520 Memorial and offering unusual smoothies and juices, like "Graham Slams" and peanut butter and jelly.

Robby Cook of Barringer Bar says that the empty bar space at 114 Main, formerly Copa Cabana, is undergoing renovations to become a new club, which will be owned by the same folks as Capitol Bar at 2415 Main. The opening is tentatively set for sometime in the next few weeks.

After several closures of various Prince's Hamburgers locations, a new Prince's in the final stages of construction has been spotted by Swamplot at 3425 Ella.

As promised, 1970s favorite Hamburgers by Gourmet is now open at 1360 NASA 1 Parkway in a former KFC spot, and a reader tip tells us that Moe's Southwest Grill opened two locations this week, one at 7072 F.M. 1960 and one at 14060 F.M. 2920.

We have a few bar and pub openings to share with you: Murdoch's Backyard Pub, at 18541 Mueschke, which specializes in gourmet burgers, and Up & Down, a new self-titled "ultra lounge" at 4105 Washington in the former Fig & Wasp spot.

Two Houston restaurants have added brunch options to their already popular offerings: Tony Mandola's at 1212 Waugh now offers brunch from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Saturday and Sunday, and newcomer Ginger & Fork, 4705 Inker, kicks off Sunday brunch this week from 10:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m.

Finally, here are a few sundry openings around town: Maison Crêpes at 4803 Main, Bruster's Real Ice Cream at 14131 Mueschke, Mystic Dessert Bar at 13837 Southwest Freeway in Sugar Land, Filipino Cuisine at 10950 Bissonnet and Papa Amadeus café at 25602 I-45 North in Spring.

Now, let's take a look at all the restaurant openings and closings in March, including a few that we missed the first time around.

Bananas Thai Cuisine, 15556 FM 529
Canard, 4721 North Main
Chowpatty Express, 1420 South Mason
Cowboy Chicken, 20702 Katy Freeway
Craft Burger, food truck
Current/ SideBar, 2 Waterway Square Place
El Tiempo Cantina, 21810 Kingsland
El Vaso Loko, 5528 Airline
Express Rolls, 919 Milam
Ginger & Fork, 4705 Inker
Ginza, 12728 Grant
Golden Chick, 8910 Westheimer
Gyro King, 9203 Highway 6 South
Haner's Bakery & Sausage, 611 West Main in Tomball
H.S. Green, 5092 Richmond
Invasion Ice House/ Tako Box, 823 Dumble
Irish Cowboy Backyard Patio & Bar, 2300 Louisiana
Johnny McElroy's Irish Pub & Patio, 1223 Waugh
Juice Time, 3697 Highway 6
Kuen Chinese Noodle House, 9140 Bellaire
Kung Fu Tea, 11200 Broadway in Pearland
Lanka-Mex, food truck
The Library Coffee and Wine House, 2612 Scott
Live Sports Bar, 405 Main
Malay Malay, 2508 Gulf Freeway South
Mels' Seafood Shack, food truck
Melting Blocks Shaved Ice & Boba Tea, 6031 Highway 6 North
Minuti Coffee, 5903 Westheimer
Miss Bea's Shaved Ice, 5208 Bellaire
MOD Pizza, 9925 Barker Cypress
Phi Coffee & Tea, 11201 Bellaire
Pho Le, 5015 Antoine
Picanha House, food truck
Pollo Bravo, 10085 Long Point
Preamble Lounge & Craft House, 20801 Gulf Freeway
The Rouxpour, 700 Baybrook Mall
Ruggles Green, 2305 West Alabama
Sam's Boat, 9955 Barker Cypress
Sertinos Cafe, 25707 Westheimer
Skinny Rita's Cantina, 607 West Gray
Tarakaan, 2301 Main (resumed food service)
TeaBar and Organics, 2408 Rice
The Merrill House, 2502 Algerian (rebranding of Paul's Kitchen)
Toulouse Café and Bar, 4444 Westheimer
Tree House, 14008 Memorial
Windy City Grill and Pizza, 1644 Research Forest
Zeapod Cakery, 13010 FM 529

59 Diner(s), 17695 Tomball Parkway, 3801 Farnham and 12550 Southwest Freeway
Café Express, 9595 Six Pines
Canyon Cafe, 5000 Westheimer
D'Amico's Italian Market Café, in LaCenterra at Cinco Ranch
D'marcos Pizzeria, 14624 Memorial
Don Patron Bar & Grill, 500 Dallas
Fiesta Mart, 2300 North Shepherd
Georges Bistro, 219 Westheimer
Hughes Hangar, 2811 Washington
Kaffeine Coffe, 2612 Scott
Kubo's, 2414 University
Los Dos Vaqueros, 1234 Sheldon (now reopened)
The Marque and Method, 798 Sorella
Mr. Peeples, 1911 Bagby
Pie Five, 107 Yale
S & S Steaks & Spirits, 815 Plantation in Richmond
SnowBlock Shavery, 2518 Rice
Tejas Restaurant, 12219 Alief Clodine

Added Brunch Service
Bistro Menil, 1513 West Alabama
Izakaya, 318 Gray
Mark's American Cuisine, 1658 Westheimer
State of Grace, 3258 Westheimer

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