PaperCity Magazine

August 2013 - Houston

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ON CLOUD 9 Cloud 10 Creamery, 5216 Morningside Dr. in Hanover Rice Village Center, 281.310.1662; FRESH SPOTS TO SHOP GAZE AND GRAZE , LIKE HEAT-SEEKING MISSILES, WE'LL MAKE A STRAIGHT TRAJECTORY FOR No chocolate chip mint or cookie-dough flavors here … Pastry chef Chris Leung opens his sublime frozen dessert shop, Cloud 10 Creamery, mid-month with a frosty menu of ice creams and sorbets pulsing with flavor combos like roasted carrot and miso, strawberry and tomato, brown sugar and coriander. Leung, the pastry chef at Kata Robata, has been customizing his artisanal frozen treats for top restaurants and food trucks in town — namely, Underbelly, The Hay Merchant, Roost, Phamily Bites, Sweets, Good Life, Neo Grill and Sundance Cinemas — for the past year, but his new 1,200-square-foot space, designed by local Intexture Architects, convenes his treasures in one white-and-creamy-blue space. In addition to the original 10 flavors (including spicy dark chocolate, peanut butter and crushed peanuts, vanilla bean and, the most requested, toasted rice), the shop mixes in 10 seasonal zingers every three months — think roasted banana and cinnamon, brown butter and lemon, and butternut basil. Homemade toppings, Cloud Pops, ice cream sandwiches, frozen cakes, sundaes, banana splits, milkshakes, frappes and floats, plus a secret dessert Leung is keeping under wraps until later, are also on the menu. For a minimum halfgallon, request a custom flavor ($25). Kate Stukenberg J. McLAUGHLIN FOR DUDS FOR THE CAPE AND THE PALM REDUX WHAT'S OLD IS ONCE FOR CORAL-COLORED LOBSTER, COP A BUTTERNUT BASIL CONE AGAIN ANEW AT CLOUD 10 CREAMERY, SAMPLE A FLIGHT OF CRISP GRAND WHITES AT CAMERATA AT PAULIE'S AND END THE DAY WITH A S U G A R S C R U B AT B L I S S F U L I N D U L G E N C E . The Palm, 6100 Westheimer Road, 713.977.2544; W AHOY AUGUST! ho couldn't benefit from a little nip and tuck every decade or so? When a landmark eatery that's been serving steaks and classic sides for more than three decades goes under the knife and the recovery is nearly five months, loyal fans flock to its side once the bandages come off. The fanfare at the reveal of the larger (8,800 square feet), spiffed-up version of The Palm is testament to more than a fondness for chef Ricardo Ramirez-Rea's food; it also shows the magnetism of executive director Jim Martin, who migrated from New York 35 years ago to open the Houston branch — the first in The Palm chain to be revamped (and expanded) by Chicago architects Dacre & Younquist. Martin serves as an engaging host, welcoming customers old and new, entertaining them with morsels of the storied past of this fourth-generation, family-owned eatery started by two Italian immigrants from Parma. The partners, he reveals, intended to name their new business after their birthplace, but New York bureaucrats misspelled the name on their operating license, calling it "Palm" instead of "Parma." Founders Bozzi and Ganzi apparently went with it and, much to their credit, evolved the restaurant, adding primecut steaks and lobsters to the menu (such as their The Palm flavorsome 14-ounce porcini-rubbed New York strip with roasted shallot butter) while never abandoning the Italian favorites people have clamored for since The Palm's beginnings, including tender chicken parmigiana ($32), linguine with clam sauce ($24) and veal Milanese ($30). Finally, for those local luminaries whose images are immortalized on the walls, not to worry: Your visage remains, alongside paintings of Houston city landmarks created by artist Zachery Bird atop the warm plaster walls. Laurann Claridge AHOY AMERICANA J. McLaughlin, 1963 W. Gray St. in River Oaks Shopping Center, 832.831.9240, F or post-Ivy Leaguers with a penchant for weekends at the Cape and Lyford, J. McLaughlin has long been the go-to for high casual weekend wear. The company was started 35 years ago by then-20-something brothers Jay and Kevin McLaughlin. Flush with capital from historic Brooklyn Brownstone renovations, the sibs picked a strip of Madison Avenue on the Upper East Side next to a couple of their favorite patrician watering holes. Their exalted circle of American taste featured looks inspired by the Jazz Age and Camelot, tweaked and updated, adhering to style not fashion. Thankfully the ethos remains, and now two Texas stores are opening almost simultaneously in Dallas and Houston. The boutique in River Oaks Shopping Center stocks tweaked-traditional embroidered belts, muted foulard trousers, checked linen shirts in sherbet colors (and the famed McLaughlin blue); twill shorts with dog, fish, sail and lobster motif; and swimwear for men and women. Also look for Hamptons-worthy duffels and totes, Dopp kits, cosmetic bags, correspondence cards and a special men's shirt case that thwarts wrinkles en route. And almost everything can be monogrammed, of course. Caroline Starry LeBlanc CHRIS BROWN 99 BOTTLES OF WINE ON THE WALL FIREIN THE HEIGHTS AND ICE FACIALS Blissful Indulgence, The Corridor Shops, 238 W. 19th St., 713.880.2547; Camerata at Paulie's, 1830 Westheimer Road, 713.522.8466; AUGUST | PAGE 8 | 2013 BRENT BRUNI COMISKEY In Renaissance Florence, a person with social aspirations was expected to know the difference between a sonnet, a villanelle and a sestina. In Houston today, the upward-bound need to know a Sauvignon Blanc from a Chardonnay. A number of wine bars have opened to address this need, the newest David Keck being Camerata, named for the Florentine salons where da Vincis rubbed elbows with Agricolas and entertained Medicis. It's the creation of Paul Petronella, the restaurateur behind the adjacent casual dining spot Paulie's. For Camerata, Petronella teams with David Keck (formerly of Cova and Uchi). A nationally recognized wine expert with an Ivy League degree and a background in opera, Keck sources wines from around the world that are hard to find and, in some cases, impossible to get anywhere else in Texas. He's hired a staff of knowledgeable oenophiles to help customers make their selections. Camerata is currently the one place in town to sample Laherte Frères champagne ($169 a bottle), the only French bubbly made from a blend of all seven sanctioned Champagne grape varieties, or Massican Sauvignon Blanc ($6 a bottle), a Napa Valley rarity that allocates only five cases per vintage to the entire state of Texas. Many wines are offered by the glass, priced from $5 for a three-ounce pour to $21 for a six-ounce pour, with most of six-ounce pours in the $14 to $16 range. The food here is a simple but excellent selection of salumi and cheeses, sourced by Houston Dairymaids ($25 for any four items; $45 for all eight). George Alexander We discovered the divine mini spa Blissful Indulgence on our way to a procuring a healthy quaff at Juicy in the Sky. Owners Leyvi Guerra and husband James Hury — she's an esthetician and cancer survivor; he's in business development at Texas Children's Hospital — devised this cosseted Heights stop to serve up organic skincare (facials fueled by fruit and veggie pulp, seeds, herbs and spices such as stimulating paprika, used in the Fire and Ice treatment), creams and lotions employing Leyvi Guerra Eminence botanicals. They also offer a brow bar and detoxing mani/ pedis that begin with delightful sugar scrubs powered by their own plant-based elixirs (we're mad for the rose-infused version) and topped off by an array of beautiful polishes by environmentally friendly SpaRitual. Catherine D. Anspon

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