The opening of Uchi Houston last week was just the prelude to a rash of exciting, greatly anticipated openings across the city. Get ready, folks: It's a great time to be a diner in Houston.
Artisans, the new restaurant from Le Mistral brothers David and and Sylvain Denis with friend and fellow chef Jacques Fox, has opened at 3201 Louisiana. The Midtown restaurant is near other hotspots Sushi Raku and Piola, and features correspondingly scenester-y prices: $30 for a Marseillaise-style red snapper, $38 for seared lamb loin with Fingerling potatoes. Reservations are required until the grand opening, which takes place tomorrow.
Down the street at the Houston Pavilions, Scott Gertner's has finally opened after the old Scott Gertner's Skybar was unceremoniously kicked out of the Montrose clouds in 2010. As with the old Skybar, the new spot at the Pavilions has a rooftop deck. Alas, this one is only on the third floor, but it features a great view of downtown nevertheless.
Underbelly and The Hay Merchant are both set to open any day now. Eater Houston took a tour through both recently, noting that Chris Shepherd's restaurant -- Underbelly -- will be completely separate from Kevin Floyd's beer bar -- The Hay Merchant -- but that the two will share a massive butchering kitchen between the two attached spaces.
Also open this week is La Fisheria, the new modern coastal Mexican restaurant from celebrity chef Aquiles Chávez and his team from Mexico. It replaced the gone-but-not-forgotten Pagoda Vietnamese Bistro & Bar at 4705 Inker.
As reported earlier this week, Late Nite Pie is closed for the foreseeable future due to a massive fire that burned the pizza joint to the ground.
Fire didn't get Resie's Chicken & Waffles too down, though. While the chicken joint is busy repairing the fire damage at its flagship location on Mangum, a second location opened this week in Greenspoint at 233 W. Greens Road.
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As reported in last week's Openings & Closings, the Heights has a new beer bar: Public House Heights, which opened on February 9 at 2802 White Oak.
Heading for Houston soon: crepes and lounges. CultureMap reports that Sweet Paris Crêperie is moving into the Rice Village space vacated by Patu and Texadelphia. And the Houston Business Journal is reporting that the empty space which once housed Phil's BBQ on Washington Avenue will soon become "hip Austin lounge" J. Black's Feel Good Lounge, featuring cocktails and artisan (?) pizzas.