Laurenzo's Grille, a sleekly rehabbed former laundromat and the brainchild of Roland Laurenzo (son of the famous Mama Ninfa of Ninfa's on Navigation fame) offers up prime steaks alongside some of the family's favorite Tex-Mex dishes. Think slabs of prime rib with chili con queso and chips complemented by strong margaritas. Keeping it all in the family is grandson Domenic Laurenzo, who mans the spacious open kitchen. Laurenzo’s Grille, 4412 Washington Ave., Houston, TX 77007, 713-880-5111.
Ouisie’s Table Rolls Out Updated Wild Game Menu
Chef/owner Elouise Adams Jones is adding more fresh game to the menu at Ouisie's Table. Several years ago, she created a venison chicken-fried steak, and now she's adding more venison, ostrich, buffalo, quail and boar to classic regional dishes. To wit: bacon-wrapped quail with wild boar sausage; grilled buffalo tenderloin with Marsala mushroom sauce; and herb-crusted ostrich with dried cherry demi-glace. Ouisie’s Table, 3939 San Felipe Rd., Houston, TX 77027, 713-528-2264.
Bistro Lancaster has a new menu from new executive chef Mark Riley that bows to the small-plate trend and bows again to its location in the heart of the Theater District. The menu focuses on small plates with touches of the Mediterranean side-by-side with traditional bistro offerings. The appetizer section is titled Act I and entrees are called Act II. Menu standouts include the salad nicoise with grilled tuna for $12 and herb-infused olive oil with warm pita bread for $7. Bistro Lancaster, The Lancaster, 701 Texas Ave., Houston, TX 77002, 713-228-9502.
Texans are saying adios to a little piece of history this month as the Outpost Tavern prepares to close for good in February. The ramshackle building near Clear Lake has been a favorite burger, barbecue and beer hangout for NASA's astronauts and their families and was even featured in several films shot in the area. Outpost Tavern, 18113 Kings Lynn St., Houston, TX 77058, 281-333-1235.
No more buffalo burgers and stir-fry tofu for River Oaks---Ziggy's Bar and Grill is closing the W. Alabama St. location and heading downtown. The new location at 702 Main and Capitol Streets should be serving up the healthy fare sometime in February. Ziggy's Bar and Grill, W. Alabama St., Houston, TX 77098, no phone.
The juice is about to dry up at The Wine Bucket, one of the first wine bars and boutiques in the city. Junico and Tracy Valarde are closing the Bucket at the end of January after almost a decade of selling and serving wines and bar bites. The Wine Bucket, W. Alabama St., Houston, TX 77098, 713-942-WINE.
View our calendar of Wine Dinners & Tastings in Houston