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Chef Dave would like to tell you a few things he thinks are important. Here, you can read about the newest places to eat, links to other culinary web sites, occasional commentary, and what's on Dave's mind. 

Archived Article #5

                                                                                      June 5

Hell's Corners     

When the Gumbo Shop opened on hell's corner, at Richmond and Greenbriar, I thought this quite a risky concept.  No, I never tried it, and I guess neither did many others.  Then came Just Fajitas.  Maybe it's the seemingly limited concept, or maybe nobody cared.  I drive by this area several times a week during the lunch hours, and have yet to see many cars in the lot.  Now there's a second Pot Pie Pizza location - the first one on Westheimer near Mandell - and still few cars.  I guess Mickey K should be happy that his Khyber restaurant is successful and should stop trying to expand his empire.

George Fu learned that expanding his Fu's Garden empire by opening Blue Water Grill, where the Bayou City Oyster Company sat, was a waste of time and money.  I know this as I worked there for 14 months from the opening.  I feel sorry for him, since he's a really great guy.

Let's examine the four corners of that intersection.  First it seems most everything located there closes.  From Double Dave's Pizza to the Blue Water GrillPig Live and the Q Cafe. The area used to be swamped with people back in the early '90's, when 8.0 was booming.  Once 8.0 closed, it seemed to have a domino effect on the whole area. 

Cabo has managed to stay open, as well as a few others.  To say the area is jinxed is difficult, but may be true.  Parking is a crisis for so many restaurants and it seems their isn't enough of it to support the area.  There is a roof top parking area, but when I worked at Blue Water Grill, cars were being broken into and most people stopped parking up there.  Look at how many places the old Bayou City Oyster Co. has been - vacant for years, then Blue Water, etc.  It doesn't seem to matter what goes in there, they've all gone belly up.

What will it take to be successful in that area?  I couldn't tell you.  However there should be a time when someone says, "Enough is enough!"  I can't imagine how much money has been lost in the last 10 years, but I wouldn't suggest any more people try opening food establishments there.  Several locations inside the loop  just don't seem to make it.  Maybe that's why many diners seem reluctant to try the new incarnations and stick with the places that are familiar.

Chef Dave