HOWTO: Come out as a Douchebag

It’s easy! In a needlessly fawning profile in a more or less worthless glossy for the rich and shallow, be quoted thusly:

  • “Houston has a crush on Austin.” Seriously?
  • “In L.A., there’s like a thousand food trucks [. . .] so I wanted to bring that here.” Well, thank god for that; God knows there were NO food trucks AT ALL before this clown showed up OH WAIT.

I’ve been to Bermudez’s “flagship” bar, Royal Oak, once — but only as a meeting spot for the Karbach Brews Cruise monthly bike ride. At 6, it was okay, but it’s also pretty clear that by 8 or 9 it’d be completely jam packed with wall-to-wall douchebros.

I will say this: the article IS useful for providing a list of spots to skip if one wishes to avoid funding this kind of weaselry: Royal Oak; the new Pistolero; a variety of resale shops on Westheimer; and the Koagie Hots and Golden Grill trucks. Me, I’ll spend my money with the Clumsy Butchers.

3 thoughts on “HOWTO: Come out as a Douchebag

  1. There are indeed some choice quotes in this piece, but somehow this one stood out for me:

    “..helping define Montrose for its new role as a trendy district for food and fun.”

    Wha?

  2. Oh, yeah, there’s a lot of that, but mostly — in fact, almost exclusively — it’s been at the hands of the very, very respectful and not-at-all trendy group now known collectively as Clumsy Butcher.

    They started with one of the first real high-end craft cocktail bars in the country (Anvil), which became a runaway success. It’s in the old Daiquiri Factory building on Westheimer, believe it or not.

    Around the same time, both Chances and Mary’s fell on hard times. They partnered with a rising-star local chef to turn half of Chances into the Beard-nominated Underbelly (for my money, some of the best food in town, which is a tall statement in the Houston of 2013). The other half became a draft/craft beer mecca called Hay Merchant that makes the G Man look like a Bennigan’s — they’ve got like 70+ taps at two different temperatures, plus cask stuff. We poured beer from a HM growler when you were here, actually.

    When Mary’s fell, the group rehabbed the building and turned it into a really fantastic coffee shop, but while still honoring the legacy of the lamented, iconic gay bar.

    That’s all they have on Westheimer, but they’ve been joined by Uchi, out of Austin, in the old Felix’s location. Further down the street is Indika (high-end Indian) and Dolce Vita (neopolitan-style pizza, pasta, and wine). Holding down the new restaurant row is Feast, which will sadly close this year.

    So that’s what they mean when they say it’s gotten hotter and hipper on Westheimer. The Clumsy Butcher folks are not flighty, douchey, or jerky at all — their joints are comfortable and fun and above all fit in the neighborhood. The clientele for Bermudez’ Royal Oak, though, is 95% import from Washington Avenue (i.e., the crowd that previously hung out at downtown clubs, and before that, on the Richmond Strip).

    (Incidentally, so respected are these CM guys now that they’ve taken over management of both Antone’s Po Boys and — huge news — the original Ninfa’s on Navigation. They also run a bar downtown called Okra where all profits go to charity. Amazing.)

  3. The only fate for Bermudez that would even remotely satisfy me would be for him to wind up on the wrong end of a long series of German schei├če movies in a desperate effort to finance his next bar.

    I probably shouldn’t have shared that. I’d really like that to happen to him, though.