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The Minds Behind One of Houston’s Oldest Mediterranean Restaurants Have a Vegetarian Eatery in the Works

Heartbeet, from the team behind Hungry’s, is set to open its doors in the coming months

a veggie-filled bowl of vegetarian poke made with roasted beets
The roasted beet “poke” bowl at Heartbeet

The minds behind one of Houston’s oldest Mediterranean restaurants will soon open a new spinoff eatery focused entirely on vegetarian and vegan eats.

Owners Fred Sharifi and his nephew Ashkan Nowamooz will open Heartbeet, an entirely plant-based restaurant that will open at 14714 Memorial Drive, right next to Hungry’s Memorial Drive location, in September, according to a press release. The original Hungry’s Cafe & Bistro, which was founded as a sandwich shop 45 years ago, has long been known for its boozy brunch, beautiful patio, and daily vegan menu. Hungry’s first started offering vegan takes on its Mediterranean comfort food in 2016, with a daily plant-based special. Over time, those daily specials grew to including a dedicated section on the menu, a vegan brunch, and even kid-friendly options.

As Hungry’s owners saw an increase in demand for plant-based dishes, they also saw the perfect opportunity to open a new restaurant focused entirely on veggie-friendly eats.

As far as the food is concerned, the menu at Heartbeet will include vegetarian comfort dishes like seitan gyros, wild mushroom pasta made with chickpea-flour penne, roasted beet “poke”, falafel fingers, and mac and cheese made with cashew sauce. The restaurant will also offer fresh-pressed juice and cocktails, like a cucumber martini and spicy pineapple margarita.

This isn’t Sharifi and Nowamooz’s first foray into veggie-friendly restaurants. In 2016, around the same time they started featuring vegan dishes at Hungry’s, the family also took over longtime Montrose cafe Baba Yega, which offered an extensive menu of vegan, vegetarian, and gluten-free dishes. Baba Yega has been closed since a massive fire in 2018, but is expected to reopen by the end of the year.

No word yet on a precise opening date for Heartbeet, but stay tuned to Eater for further details.

dishes like seitan “steak” on ciabatta, vegetable stew with eggplant and split peas, veggie-packed grain and lentil bowls, and even a vegan take on brunch, including fruit-smothered buckwheat waffles.

brunch destination

vegeterian menu

baba yega