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Chef Justin Yu Goes Rattlesnake Hunting With Gordon Ramsay in NatGeo’s ‘Uncharted’

Plus, Fiction Coffee makes its Houston debut and more dining intel

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Chef Gordon Ramsay
Photo by David M. Benett/Dave Benett/Getty Images

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.

Chef Justin Yu joins Gordon Ramsey for new season of TV show Uncharted

Acclaimed Houston chef Justin Yu joins TV cooking personality Gordon Ramsey to explore South Texas on the latest season of Ramsey’s National Geographic TV series, Uncharted.

Yu, the mind behind Downtown restaurant Theodore Rex and Better Luck Tomorrow in the Heights, takes Ramsey to the Texas wilderness to hunt rattlesnakes, feral hogs, and gather mesquite, which they later use to cook with. A trailer for the season also shows Ramsey herding cattle on horseback with the help of a helicopter. The show, which is in its third season, sees Ramsey travel to rural parts of the world in search of ingredients, cooking techniques and other lesser-known culinary traditions. In addition to Texas, he also travels to Portugal, Croatia, Puerto Rico and the Great Smokey Mountains this season

Yu, who has been on hiatus while chef Kaitlin Steets converted T Rex into her temporary project Littlefoot, will reopen the Downtown restaurant next month with an all-new menu, according to the Houston Chron. Uncharted: Season 3 premieres on the National Geographic Channel at 8 p.m. on May 31 and will be available to stream on Disney+ afterwards.

NFL star DeAndre Hopkins hits up Sticky’s Chicken for special off-menu dish

Former Texans wide receiver DeAndre Hopkins, who now plays for the Arizona Cardinals, made a special visit to a celeb-favorite Houston restaurant during his recent trip to the Bayou City. While in Houston this past weekend, Hopkins hit up Sticky’s Chicken, where he ordered a secret menu item, the Crunchy Chicken Over Rice with an egg, according to a representative for the restaurant. Hopkins was a regular customer of Sticky’s during his stint with the Texans, even before the popular food truck opened its first brick and mortar. Other fans of the restaurant include rappers Bun B and Wiz Khalifa.

DeAndre Hopkins, a tall football player in casual clothes, stands before a neon sign in a restaurant which reads “Sticky’s”
Former Texans wide receiver DeAndre Hopkins during a recent visit to Sticky’s Chicken
Sticky’s Chicken

Hopkins isn’t the only former Houston athlete with a yearning for the Bayou City’s well-known food scene. Last week, JJ Watt (who, like Hopkins, was traded from the Texans to the Cardinals) tweeted, without context, a list of well-known Houston restaurants, including Kata Robata, Turkey Leg Hut, and Breakfast Club. Watt was in town to deliver the commencement address for the University of Texas Medical School. No word on whether he made it to any of the restaurants on his list.

Dallas-based cafe Fiction Coffee opens first location in Houston

Fiction Coffee, a popular Dallas coffee shop known for “fictional” menu named for popular literary figures, has opened its first outpost in Houston. The cafe, at 1400 Post Oak Boulevard in the lobby of the Interfin Tower, features free parking, a minimalist and airy interior, super-fast wiki, and multiple workstations (Fiction of a offshoot of coworking company Common Desk). Caffeine-heads can expect to find craft-brewed coffee, espresso, pastries and locally-sourced breakfast tacos at the shop, which is open from 7 a.m. to 2 p.m. Monday through Friday.

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