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Sky-High Power Lunch Destination Strato 550 Debuts This Month in Downtown

Plus, more Houston dining intel

Rendering: Strato 550

Strato 550 sets an opening date

Strato 550, the chic new Mediterranean eatery located on the 43rd floor of the 1415 Louisiana Building, officially debuts this month. According to a press release, Strato 550 will officially kick open the doors for lunch service on Monday, June 24, with plans to become a business lunch destination. As Eater reported previously, the restaurant has tapped chef Evan Parker to lead the kitchen, who’s spent time in the kitchens at catering company Mélange and Tinys No. 5. Notably, Strato 550 will only be open for lunch service when it arrives later this month.

1751 Sea & Bar earns three stars

Houston Chronicle critic Alison Cook has filed a review of 1751 Sea & Bar, the seafood and gin obsessed restaurant from The Pit Room’s Michael Sambrooks. In it, Cook raves about the restaurant’s perfectly-shucked Gulf oysters, a decadent deviled crab salad, and paneéd halibut. “Everything from the cordial, detail-oriented staff to the gin-centric bar program to the exceptionally reasonable wine prices coaxes guests to relax into a good time,” Cook raved. Three stars.

Kemah’s Eculent gets the WaPo treatment

Also in food critic news, Washington Post dining critic Tom Sietsema headed to Kemah to try out experimental fine dining hidden gem Eculent. As Sietsema notes, the restaurant has attracted a cult following in recent months, with reservations flying off the digital shelves and more than a thousand people on its waitlist.

Sietsema wasn’t impressed with a flashy, liquid nitrogen-infused cocktail, but was definitely impressed by chef David Skinner’s trompe l’oeil dishes like edible flower bouquets, French onion soup bonbons, and BLTs the size of cherry tomatoes. Ultimately, though, Sietsema found Eculent worth another visit, if occasionally uneven. “Is this one of the world’s best restaurants? The truth is, not every course feels fully developed,” Sietsema writes. “The bland crostini on the Tree of Life taste like they were procured from a gas station. The only wines available are the ones Skinner produces, and they’re not up to the quality of the food.”