Welcome to AM Intel in the time of coronavirus, a round-up of the city’s newest bits of restaurant-related intel. Follow Eater on Facebook and Twitter for up-to-date details on how COVID-19 is impacting the city’s dining scene.
The Starbucks at the “end of the universe” closes
A Starbucks location in River Oaks made infamous by comedian Lewis Black has shuttered. The Starbucks, which is across from another Starbucks and a quarter mile from yet another Starbucks, was the subject of a viral joke in which Black opined that he’d found the end of the universe in Houston. A commenter on Reddit indicated the location, on the southeast corner of Shepherd and West Gray, may have closed due to a rent hike.
Houston barbecue prices are expected to rise
Another fallout from the coronavirus pandemic: barbecue prices are expected to rise soon. More than 30 meat processing companies across the country have closed due to employees testing positive for Covid-19, The Houston Chronicle reports. Prices for raw brisket have nearly doubled over the past couple of weeks, with the Chron predicting that could lead to a 20% increase per pound at barbecue joints.
Heights design firm scores James Beard nod for Louisiana restaurant design
Flywheel Co, a Heights-based creative design agency, received a James Beard nomination earlier this week for its work on branding and menu design for Spoonbill Watering Hole and Restaurant in Lafayette, Louisiana, according to Houstonia Magazine. Flywheel has previously worked with Houston restaurants Slow Dough Bread Co., Southern Goods and Presidio. Flywheel joins five other Houston Beard nominees in the restaurant and media awards categories. This year’s winners will be announced on September 25.