Pico's Mex-Mex is officially settling into its new digs. The 30-year-old Mexican restaurant was expected to open at its new Upper Kirby address late last month, but chef/owner Arnaldo Richards and his wife Janice opened their doors to the public this week. The new space at Kirby and Richmond has already housed two other Mexican restaurants: Ninfa's and the short-lived Maggie Rita's. Some of the opening day delays stemmed from city permitting issues and the complete renovation of the building's interior. There are few remnants of the Ninfa's interior, and the reconfiguration and addition of a patio means that they can now seat 300 guests, up from 240. And although the Mexican restaurant stands directly across from Pappasito's Cantina, Arnaldo told Eater that locals can go to Pappasito's one night, Pico's another and "then go to Carrabba's and you'll have three different experiences." He explains that their primary dedication to showcasing authentic Mexican food is what distinguishes them from some surrounding Mexican establishments.
As for drinks, Arnaldo's daughter Monica Richards will be in charge of the beverage program and has already stocked it with sotol and mezcal, although there's also a private locker program for those who want to keep their own bottles at the restaurant. Lockers can be reserved for private groups in packages priced at $1,800, $3,600 and $5,000.
Now that the original location on Bellaire is closed, the Richards can focus on their massive new Upper Kirby home. "This area calls for something like this," Arnaldo told Eater last month. "I'm very proud of it."
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