Notice all that activity at the building formerly occupied by Flamingo Steak and Seafood, 6028 Heards Lane on the island?
I got a chance this morning to stop by and chat with Doug Thomas, who with business partners is giving the building a new look, new name and new menu. While there, I also got to meet Chef Rafael Ruiz.
The eatery, going by the name On the Bayou — it’s on the shores of English Bayou — will serve up fine Texas cuisine without being too uppity, Ruiz said. Ruiz describes the menu as “Texas Creole,” which will be heavy on seafood while also offering up steak entrees and other fare.
The food will be rustic and simple with bold flavors, Ruiz said. Everything will be made from scratch, he said. The ambience is “casual fine dining” with heavy Texas themes and colors, such as University of Texas burnt orange and Texas A&M University maroon.
On the Bayou also will boast a sports bar, but don't expect boring bar grub. Ruiz plans to prepare elevated bar food, including such menu items as pork belly po’boy and handcut fries that require a two-day preparation time.
The sports bar will have an abundance of TVs, playing 11 football games at once.
Crews are busy painting the place and also plan to repaint the mauve exterior to complement the interior. The game room includes darts and pool.
Look for a soft opening of On the Bayou by Memorial Day weekend, Thomas said.
Thomas also plans to expand the deck to play up the waterfront experience.
In 2012, Bob Greig opened Flamingo Steak and Seafood with great success. But the eatery closed late last year after Greig decided to pursue other interests, which didn’t include running a restaurant.
Greig still owns the 10,000-square-foot building, which has been home to a long line of eateries, including China Border, China Island Buffet and Saka Sushi & Hibachi.