Fans of acclaimed French restaurant Étoile in Uptown Park in the Galleria area will be excited to hear that it’s been so successful that chef Philippe Verpiand and his business partner and wife, Monica Bui, are opening a second location downtown. The new place will be called Brasserie du Parc, and it’s targeted to open its doors in the fall.
Brasserie du Parc will be located in One Park Place, a residential high-rise that overlooks Discovery Green. Notable neighbors include Phoenicia Market, MKT Bar and Four Seasons Houston.
The spacious restaurant will encompass 3,000 square feet and feature a 1,000-square-foot mezzanine, a 1,500-square-foot terrace and a secondary concept within called Crêperie du Parc. The traditional French crêperie will feature a walk-up window and serve both sweet and savory crepes.
A top name in Houston restaurant architecture — Kathy Heard Design—is responsible for the look and feel of the space. The plan is for it to be divided into distinct bar, lounge and formal dining areas with a “show stopping 360-degree square bar,” according to a press release. A dedicated menu is planned for the bar, while the dining room will have a more formal menu.
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As is the case at Étoile, expect adventurous cocktails, an extensive wine selection and some interesting suds for beer lovers as well.
Verpiand graduated at the top of his class from the French Culinary Institute in Avignon. After working at a number of Michelin-starred restaurants in France, he emigrated to San Diego, where he ran Cavaillon Restaurant from 2005 to 2012. However, after visiting Houston, Verpiand and his wife decided his prospects were better in this active dining climate. It seems that the bet they made on Houston ended up being a winning one, both for him and for fans of French cuisine.
Interestingly, Brasserie du Parc is not the only new French restaurant slated for downtown. The Valencia Group is also planning for its own French restaurant at forthcoming Hotel Alessandra, helmed by chef Jose Hernandez of Radio Milano (previously at La Balance in Katy).
It seems that once again there will be a French takeover — of the culinary kind.