Less than four months after opening its highly-anticipated Garden Oaks location, Cherry Block Smokehouse served its last meal on New Year’s Eve. In a post shared to the restaurant’s social media pages on December 30, “an unfortunate accumulation of insurmountable losses and delays” leading up to the restaurant’s opening were to blame. The lengthy post went on to explain that setbacks left the business short of its cashflow goal, and “operations were plagued too much to overcome”.
The restaurant’s social media platforms made mention of new menu items and updated hours, as recently as December 20, with the follow up news of its shuttering likely coming as a surprise to most.
Cherry Block Smokehouse opened in mid-September at the new Stomping Grounds multi-use development on W 34th St, alongside other newbies like Rooster & Rice and LuLoos Day & Night from the team behind Blood Brothers BBQ. While the restaurant was new, many Houstonians were familiar with the concept long before it opened in Garden Oaks. Owner Felix Flores briefly operated Cherry Block Butcher as a counter inside Bravery Chef Hall in downtown. By sourcing proteins from his family’s meat distribution company, Falcon Lake Farms, he cut out the middle man and offered an impressive menu of prime cuts and specialty dishes like chicken fried steak bites and an immensely popular andouille sausage gumbo at competitive prices.
After the Cherry Block Butcher counter closed in 2021, Flores ventured to Katy, where he opened the doors to a shoppable destination called Cherry Block Craft Butcher and Texas Market. Stocked with free range Texas meats from Falcon Lake Farms, and additional products from Texas purveyors, Flores was able to offer a bargain for locally sourced goods and meat.
The goal with Cherry Block Smokehouse in the Stomping Yards was to provide a place where Houstonians could enjoy full-service dining in a comfortable and relaxed setting. With a dedicated beverage program and a dining room which opened up to the property’s communal green space, Cherry Block Smokehouse was a far cry from the counter at Bravery Chef Hall and quickly became a haven for Garden Oaks and Oak Forest residents.
For now, fans of Cherry Block’s beloved restaurant provisions will once again have to learn to live without. But, for anyone looking to try their hand at recreating any dishes at home, the Cherry Block Craft Butcher and Texas Market in Katy remains open.