PaperCity Magazine

July 2013 - Houston

Issue link:

Contents of this Issue


Page 23 of 36

TO ... 1111 Uptown Peluche Décor, GRADY CARTER PASSPORT Park Blvd., 713.447.0555; W FRESH SPOTS TO SHOP GAZE AND GRAZE , WE'RE BEATING THE HEAT IN A TURKISH STUDENT'S HAT, SAMPLING PINK SALT CACAO BITES, BEING PROVOCATIVE AT HOMELAND SECURITY, BITING INTO CITRUS-BRINED WILD GAME HEN AND TAPPING OUT THE MOM SCENE AT ELIZABETH STREET. JENNY ANTILL CHOCOLATE DREAMING Park Blvd., Araya Artisan Chocolate, 1141 Uptown 713.960.0850; Owners Carla Susi and Stefano Zullian Araya Artisan Chocolate has opened a second outpost in Uptown Park (the first is in River Oaks Shopping Center). Located between Bill Walker Clothiers and Paul Carter Jewels, the 700-square-foot choc shop, owned by Stefano Zullian, wife Carla Susi and her sister Silvana Susi, offers chocolate confections spiked with pink salt, açai pomegranate and champagne rose — 36 flavors in all, made from fair-trade Venezuelan El Rey couverture chocolate and flavored with fruits, nuts, honey, infusions and liquors. And don't forget the macarons — 10 flavors shipped in from France. Seth Vaughan THE WISHING HOUR IS UPON Gray, 713.529.5881; US Eleven XI, 607 W. MICHAEL PAULSEN I t appears the wish of chef Kevin Bryant, GM Joe Welborn and bar manager Joe Hausner for a restaurant of their own has been granted. Eleven XI is named after the wishing hour — when 11:11 pops up on your clock, it's said, close your eyes and make a wish. Their guardian angels likely guided them to this 1940s-era house in the Montrose, once home to Bibas One's A Meal. The trio revamped the two-story space alpha-male style with white tablecloth service inside and a soon-to-be completed covered patio with Wi-FI, TV and picnic tables with scoopedout trenches to hold anything from chilled rosé to shellfish on ice. Bryant — a former pastry chef who worked at Tony's before migrating to the savory side — focuses here on what he describes as "southern coastal cuisine," with oysters, flounder, Beef tartare crab and more seafood dotting his menu. Amidst a gastropub vibe, you'll find apps such as beef tartar ($13), braised pork shank tossed in barbecue sauce ($11) and grilled oysters ($11), with entrees ranging from citrus-brined wild game hen ($23) and panseared halibut cheeks ($23) to filet mignon ($19 to $34). Attention is paid to the cocktail program, too. And for wine drinkers curious about a new vintage, they'll graciously open any bottle on the list if you'll commit to quaffing two glasses. Laurann Claridge ELIZABETH A REASON TO SEASON Seasons 52, Millennium High Street, 4410 Westheimer Road, 713.621.5452; For every restaurant diner who's bemoaned that eating out isn't always the leanest option, along comes Seasons 52. New to the Houston market, this Florida-based operator (which has just debuted the first of three locations opening in our area, the second opens in CityCentre Caramelized sea scallops in the fall) delivers fresh, slimmed-down meals, with every appetizer, entrée and dessert ringing in at no more than 475 calories each. We know what you're thinking: The chefs must be serving up Lilliputian portions fit for a spa menu or dishes that recall the days when sparse cuisine minceur plates were all the range. No, no, no. The only thing downsized is the tasting-size dessert selections ($2.50) — but hardly. Here at lunch and dinner, you'll find a seasonal menu that takes large advantage of grilling and marinating techniques to deliver loads of flavor minus a lot of fat. (Our waiter even boasted there's no butter found anywhere on premise, while calorie counts are all found online.) Signature cracker-crisp flatbreads — we recommend the steak and cremini mushroom, 420 calories — are worth the splurge. You can always be good with an entrée, such as Maui tuna crunch salad made with sushi-grade seared tuna, its greens lightly dressed with miso vinaigrette (380 calories) or grilled sea scallops caramelized and served with asparagus and pearl pasta orbs (390 calories). Carnivores can indulge in a hearty wood-roasted pork tenderloin with creamy polenta, broccoli rabe and mushrooms (470 calories). Managing partner Reuben Rolf, a two-decade veteran of the business whose latest Houston post was The Palm, keeps a steady eye over the warm wooded dining room with Arts & Craftsstyle inspirations, a large space divided into intimate niches each with a view into the gleaming stainless-steel-clad kitchen. Laurann Claridge HOMELAND (ART) SECURITY Gallery Homeland, 2327 ½ Commerce St., 503.819.9656; Houston's freshest art space harks back to the era when Commerce Street was going strong — gritty, great, provocative and fearless. Now Paul Middendorf's newly minted Gallery Homeland takes up residence next door to the fabled, now shuttered C.S.A.W. (Commerce Street Artists Warehouse), where Rick Lowe and Nestor Topchy began their turns in the Texas art world. Inhabiting the former studio of Lee Benner (whose film about the C.S.A.W. scene in its heyday has just been released), Middendorf, a Portland transplant who keeps a space going in his hometown too, unfurls an ambitious exhibition plan. It's all done with a messy DIY aesthetic that's perfect for Homeland, with its cavernous historic and roughhewn interiors and backyard that's ripe for performance. Hoping for a revival of the Commerce Street corridor, this Paul Middendorf with an gallerist is tapping notables installation by Stephanie Hamblin including artist Debra Barrera, curator of the intriguing "Daytime Television," a view of promising UH and Rice BFA up-and-comers that graced Homeland in May. This month, be sure to catch Cranbrook grad/Houstonbased Tony Garbarini's satirical sculptural assemblages. Catherine D. Anspon JULY | PAGE 24 | 2013 BRENT BRUNI COMISKEY A STREET WORD ON n inspiring Web site for stylish mothers,, has expanded to Houston and Dallas. The site launched in New York City in 2012 and has since spread to posh locales the world over, including L.A., London, Paris and Tokyo. Tastemaker moms — from jet-setters to working professionals — provide their take on the best in culture, fashion and lifestyle happenings that are family-friendly, too. "I believe Texas women take their style and lifestyle seriously, but they also care about their families and charity," says founder Emanuele Della Valle, son of Diego Della Valle (who owns the famous Tod's label). "These are the key elements to becoming an Elizabeth Street Mom." Houston mothers featured on the site include fashion accessories designer Alexandra Knight, philanthropist Greggory Burk, Laboratoria shop owner Tatiana Massey and interior designer Elizabeth Young; their top tips will be displayed on in various formats, from profiles to street style diaries and the perfect weekend itinerary. Kate Stukenberg hen Deanna Breaux Gathe's hubby's job took him around the world, the effervescent interior designer often went along for the Deanna Breaux Gathe ride. Like many of us, her luggage came back bursting at the seams with treasures she'd found during those far-flung adventures. Friends and clients would swoon over the objects she hauled home, and finally it occurred to her: Why not open an accessories boutique? Now she's done just that. At Peluche Décor in the former Uptown Park spot of Lenny e Cia, Gathe offers a colorful yet wildly disparate array of pieces from Africa, Belgium, Turkey, even the place where she grew up, Louisiana. Gathe believes that you should have one intriguing object that inspires the look of an entire room. Hence, she has brought in antique suzanis and a vintage Yoruba handcarved door, as well as fun graphic pillows, trays, napkins and throws by Coco Cozy. Peluche (French for "plush") is billed as a lifestyle boutique, so you'll also find baby and dog gifts, jewelry and scarves. Standouts we could build a room around include a 19th-century Turkish student's hat ($350), propped on an iron pedestal, and oxidized-brass serving domes ($120 to $350) that would dress your table up or down and transform your dining spaces. Laurann Claridge

Articles in this issue

Links on this page

Archives of this issue

view archives of PaperCity Magazine - July 2013 - Houston