The Blind Goat Opens, Eight Row Spawns a Second, and Other Juicy Food News
AS COLD FEBRUARY fades (thank you very much), March beckons with fresh beginnings and other tasty news. Get out and enjoy new taste adventures, outdoor patios, and what we hope is Houston’s spring arrival!
The Blind Goat Debuts in Spring Branch
Sugarcane shrimp at The Blind Goat
As teased in Houston CityBook’s current issue, Christine Ha’s popular Bravery Chef Hall counter concept, The Blind Goat, finally has a permanent home in Spring Branch. The Masterchef winner and her husband-partner, John Su, encountered permit delays, but the full-service restaurant is now in its soft opening phase. Expect a similar yet expanded menu with classics like Mom’s eggrolls, The Great Papaya salad, and a new one: Texas BBQ brisket fried rice with smoked brisket from new neighbor Feges BBQ. Big plates including whole roasted turmeric fish and crawfish and noodles tempt. Naturally, celeb chef Gordon Ramsay’s favorite Rubbish Apple Pie a la mode is the signature dessert. Open and airy, the brick-paved dining space has a bar/counter and is accented with a natural rope design and tropical plants. Ha also owns Xin Chao in the Heights, and is planning a new sandwich shop called Stuffed Belly to debut later this year.
Eight Row Flint Duplicates
Art at Eight Row Flint (photo by Micah Danae)
Watering hole Eight Row Flint, known for its ranch water and stellar food truck tacos, recently opened a second location in EaDo in the shuttered Night Shift space. It’s the first duplication of a concept under the Agricole Hospitality umbrella (Coltivare, EZ’s, Vinny’s, Indianoloa, etc.). Like the original in the Heights, the new Eight Row is slinging tacos, like shrimp and octopus, built on tortillas made from the bar’s own nixtamalized corn masa. Expect savory bar snacks like campechana, ceviche, surprises like pickled quail eggs, and inventive takes on empanadas. A custom rick house anchors the expansive main dining room, and eclectic art decorates the walls, including a bright stairway mural created by GM Christian Garza and his young daughter. The stairway leads to an open-air rooftop patio with seating for 80, which will be fantastic for spring.
Tulum HTX Bows in EaDo
As its name suggests, this new rooftop EaDo tiki bar and restaurant takes its inspiration from the Caribbean city of Tulum. A soaring multi-level interior is fashioned with suspended lush accents, bamboo lighting fixtures, Aztec tiles, and a striking mural. Come for Caribbean cocktails, scratch-made Mexican dishes, and a rooftop complete with chaise lounge furniture. Guests are encouraged to lay back with a cocktail “straight from the coastline” — think the Paradise Martini, made with vodka, pineapple juice, and passion fruit, and jungle juice starring rum and tropical juices. Snack on Tulum street tacos, nachos, wings, and mozzarella lollipops. Entrées include wood-smoked rib tips, shrimp and grits, fried catfish, and weekend brunch dishes.
Eloise Nichols Goes All Day
Eloise Nichols (photo by Alex Montoya)
This Highland Village-area American resto recently adopted a more casual all-day café format and rebranded its name to Eloise Nichols All Day Café. The menu revise is gearing towards a family-friendly, affordable café with full service more like its sister restaurant Adair Kitchen. Gone from the menu is the raw bar as well as items such as cast iron chicken and fish and chips. Expect such dishes as Not Jennifer Aniston’s salad; chicken and dumplings; and Betsy’s Favorite Pasta with linguine, sundried tomato, Romano and Parmesan. Avocado toast with a poached egg and chicken and waffles are popular breakfast bites. It’s interior and patio have been refreshed, too, and there are still classic cocktails shaken at the bar.
Dawn Burrell Returns to TV
Chef Dawn Burrell (right) on 'Top Chef'
Our Houston girl is back this upcoming season for Bravo’s Top Chef: All Stars. Cheftestants from around the world will compete in the first episode Thurs., Mar., 9 on BravoTV. Burrell, who has her own restaurant planned for Houston, isn’t just a top rated chef, she’s a talent who spent her early career as a high level track and field athlete, even repping the U.S. at the 2000 Olympics as a long jumper. In her recent appearance of Top Chef in season 19 filmed in Houston, she was featured as a guest judge. This time, she joins 15 other former contestants in London for a thrilling Season 20. We hear that aforemetioned chef Christine Ha will be a guest judge in a Texas challenge. May the best chef win!
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