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After 40 Years, Houston Still Loves Hungry's

Opened since 1975, Hungry continues to be a favorite for American and Mediterranean comfort food.

Hungry's first location in Montrose in 1975.
Hungry's first location in Montrose in 1975.
Zulu Creative

Before Hungry's Cafe & Bistro in Rice Village and Memorial, there was Hungry’s International Sandwich Shop. Fred Sharifi opened the sandwich shop in Montrose on lower Westheimer, offering sandwiches from all parts of the world before expanding his services to take-out in the mid 80's. Sharifi's take-out and delivery options pioneered Houston's take-out and delivery market. "From the beginning, we simply wanted to provide our customers with fresh, affordable food that tasted great, like the food we had at home and shared with others in our home," says Sharifi.

Fast forward 40 years later and Sharifi's humble concept has grown by leaps and bounds. Abandoning its Montrose digs for locations in Rice Village (2536 Rice Boulevard) and Memorial (14714 Memorial Drive), Hungry's shifted its focus from sandwiches to a blend of Middle Eastern, Mediterranean and Southwestern fare. The menu eventually became a mix of globally-inspired comfort food, the kind that's become a staple in Houston. Fred’s nephews Ashkan and Arash Nowamooz came aboard later, along with Ashkan's wife, Culinary Institute LeNôtre grad, Sue who now oversees menu development.

The Sharifi/Nowamooz family are currently adding an upstairs bar and lounge to their Rice Village location, expected to open later this year. In a town where either diners embrace restaurant or dislike then, Hungry's longevity is a testament to the freshly made dishes offered and great service throughout the years.