Houston chef and MasterChef winner Christine Ha and her husband John Suh are opening their newest dream restaurant in Spring Branch this weekend.
Located next to Ha’s recently-opened full-scale modern Vietnamese restaurant The Blind Goat, drive-thru sandwich shop Stuffed Belly will open on June 10 for limited hours through the weekend, offering 50 percent off all of its sandwiches, sides, and drinks during its “soft opening.”
The restaurant, which offers limited seating in-doors for diners to devour handhelds on site, posted a tantalizing Instagram preview of its sandwich offerings, which will include:
- The Humpty Dumpty Egg’wich: an egg salad sandwich made with Dijon and yellow mustards, lemon, green onion, and crustless Texas toast
- Belly Burger: two smashed beef chuck patties topped with caramelized onions, American cheese, pickles, and its signature Stuffed sauce on a toasted potato bun
- Sichuan hot chicken sandwich: buttermilk fried chicken, slathered in Sichuan mayo, and topped with pickles on a toasted potato bun
- Triple Cheese, Please: a gooey grilled cheese filled with cheddar, provolone, and American cheeses and tomato confit on a buttery Texas toast
- Tuna Crunch: creamy egg, red onion, celery, and crushed potato chips, packed onto a crustless Texas toast.
Stuffed Belly will also serve sides of crispy tater tots and a variety of Zapp’s kettle potato chips to accompany its sandwiches, with combo meals costing between $12 to $17, according to Ha. Kids 12 and under have their own dedicated menu, with little grilled cheeses, fried chicken tenders, and Little Belly burgers, which come with a fountain drink and their choice of side, and all diners can indulge in a dessert with a variety of cookies offered by Heights-based cookie shop Pudgy’s Fine Cookies. The restaurant will also offer catering, with sandwich party platters available for pre-order.
Ha, the James Beard Award-nominated chef behind Vietnamese restaurant Xin Chao, first announced the new sandwich venture in October 2022, shortly after she and her husband broke ground on the new space.
“Having done two boutique restaurants, they’ve been passion projects, and it’s hard work. But for (Stuffed Belly), I want something that I can put a lot of work into; a fresh, clean brand that’s recognizable; and a solid menu that speaks to desire and comfort food, with sandwiches at a good price point,” Ha told Eater in October.
“I’ve been doing Vietnamese food and all these creative takes. I wanted to stretch my creative muscles into something else, and having been born in the States and growing up in Texas, there’s so much diversity here,” she said. “I don’t only eat Vietnamese food, and sandwiches are comfort for me, regardless of what cuisine it is.”
Ha says her husband Suh has served as the “resident sandwich expert,” helping dissect what makes them good. “He appreciates sandwiches much more than I do,” Ha said, but they can both agree, a great sandwich is about the bread, the sauces, and the condiments, which they have sought to implement in their current lineup of sandwiches.
But Ha says this is just a preview of what's to come. Stuffed Belly will be introducing more sandwich combinations in the near future, she adds.
Stuffed Belly will be open from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. on Saturday, June 10, and Sunday, June 11, or until food runs out. 8133 Long Point Road, 77055.