Atlanta restaurateur Brian Fasthoff, his brother local attorney Hank Fasthoff and Hank's wife, food blogger Maya Fasthoff are preparing to open their Latin American tapas restaurant Batanga on April 1. Located next to the Original OKRA Charity Saloon on the corner of Market Square, Batanga will serve lunch, dinner and Sunday brunch while providing live music on the weekends. As for the food, chef Ben McPherson, who also moved here with Fasthoff from Atlanta, focuses the menu's on tapas; diners can order them individually or in platters that include six or eight dishes. Batanga's menu will be both vegetarian and pescetarian friendly, with a whole section devoted to vegetable dishes.
Although the restaurant's design is still taking shape, Brian Fasthoff did provide a preview of some of his plans. He expects the restaurant's large patio to be a big draw, so he's taking steps to make it as ridiculously good looking as possible. That means 30 foot tall bamboo along the large north wall and a hanging waterfall between two trees to separate diners from the adjacent bus stop. They may also roast pigs or hold special dinners on the patio. Inside, the front of the restaurant will have a lounge/waiting area. Farther back, the tables will have a view of the stage where musicians will play on the weekends.
As for being downtown, Fasthoff says he's excited to be affiliated with the "solid operators" like Brad Moore, Ryan Rouse, Josh Martinez and Justin Burrow who are launching ramen restaurant Goro & Gun, Captain Foxheart's Bad News Bar and Spirit Lounge and Clutch City Squire. The group has been a source of support and advice as he's gone through the process of navigating the city's regulations. "I'm excited and ready to open this damn thing up."
· Batanga Houston [Facebook]
· All Coming Attractions on Eater Houston [-EHOU-]