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Japanese Noodle Chain Marugame Udon Chooses a Location for Its First Houston Outpost

Plus, Black Restaurant Week returns to Space City and more dining intel

A bowl of udon in broth, garnished with a tempura shrimp
Marugame Udon’s noodles are seriously impressive
Marugame Udon/Facebook

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.

Marugame Udon will open in Post Oak Plaza

A year ago, Eater reported that Marugame Udon, the Japanese chain known for its bouncy hand-pulled noodles, was eyeing locations in Houston. We now know the address of at least one of those spots.

Permits applications list Marugame Udon at 1727 Post Oak Boulevard, the Post Oak Plaza shopping center just north of the Galleria on San Felipe Street. That’ll put Marugame in the same shopping center as a Berryhill Baja Grill and Panera Bread.

Back in January 2020, Marugame USA president Mark Brezinski told Eater that the company was looking to open at least two locations in Houston — one near the Galleria, and one in Katy. An address for the second location has yet to be announced, and an opening date for the Galleria location is still up in the air. Earlier this year the restaurant opened its first location in Dallas.

Black Restaurant Week heads to Houston first week of April

A handful of Black-owned Houston restaurants are participating in a national initiative to highlight African, African American and Caribbean cuisines. Black Restaurant Week, which runs from April 2-11, was co-founded by Houstonian Derek Robinson in 2016 as a “celebration of flavors,” and a way to promoted Black-owned food and drinks businesses. Participating restaurants offer special happy hour deals or discounts, and there’s even a Black Restaurant Bingo game to encourage diners to explore the variety of restaurants.

The event is especially important this year, Robinson told the Dallas Morning News, as the coronavirus shutdown compounded the systemic barriers already faced by Black business owners. Many Black-owned mom-and-pop restaurants do not have the money to pay for marketing or advertising, so Black Restaurant Week helps shine a light on those businesses. Participating restaurants can be found here.

Home Slice Pizza will open this fall near MidMain

Popular Austin pizzeria Home Slice is one step closer to opening its first location in Houston. The company has announced that the restaurant will open at 3701 Travis Street in Midtown sometime this fall. That’s a slight delay from the originally-planed opening for early 2021, but the location, formerly Monica Pope’s Sparrow Bar, puts the pizza shop in a prime location for late-night slices after a concert at Continental Club or play at the MATCH Theater. In addition to the restaurant’s walk-up “slice window”, the two-story building will also offer indoor dining and a dog-friendly patio. Stay tuned for a more precise opening date.