BRENNAN’S OF HOUSTON CONGRATULATES BRENNAN’S OF NEW ORLEANS ON REOPENING
As Brennan’s of New Orleans reopens its doors, Brennan’s of Houston echoes the excitement as it reflects upon the family’s culinary legacy and distinguished hospitality standards
(HOUSTON, TX; November 19, 2014)—Named one of "America's Favorite Cities” by Travel + Leisure in 2014, Houston has emerged as a burgeoning dining destination and a place to watch for its talented chefs and diverse cuisine. One of the community’s culinary pillars for nearly 50 years is Brennan’s of Houston, which opened in 1967 and continues to play an integral role in the city’s restaurant revolution.
“We share my hometown’s excitement at the reopening of Brennan’s of New Orleans (on November 25) and congratulate my cousin Ralph Brennan and his partner Terry White,” says Proprietor Alex Brennan-Martin, son of Ella Brennan. “There is much to celebrate in Houston as well—Brennan’s of Houston is honored to have been a part of this flourishing community for nearly fifty years, and we look forward to growing with the city for generations to come.”
On Tuesday, November 25, in honor of the restaurant’s historic renovation, Brennan’s of Houston will serve complimentary Bananas Foster, an iconic dessert created at Brennan’s in 1952 featuring a tableside flambé of bananas with Caribbean rum and cinnamon served over vanilla bean ice cream, to all guests dining at the restaurant that day.
In the mid-1950s, the family moved Brennan’s of New Orleans from its original location on Bourbon Street to the Don José Faurie mansion on Royal Street, where it currently stands. In the 1920s, architect John Staub used this same mansion as inspiration for the Junior League of Houston headquarters, the building which now houses Brennan’s of Houston. When the Brennan family began looking for a location in Houston for their new restaurant in the mid-1960s, they serendipitously found an almost exact duplicate of the Brennan’s of New Orleans building, which has been home to Brennan’s of Houston for some 47 years.
A member of the Commander’s Family of Restaurants, Brennan’s of Houston has operated as an entirely separate entity from Brennan’s of New Orleans since 1973. While the restaurant continues to honor its New Orleans roots, it has also forged its own identity and reputation as an influential Houston restaurant, upholding the highest standards of service and hospitality and perpetuating the family’s culinary legacy.
In 2014, proprietor Alex Brennan-Martin was included in the Greater Houston Restaurant Association Houston Hall of Honor, the restaurant was featured among the Houston Chronicle’s Top 100 Restaurants, and the Brennan family was awarded the Food Arts Silver Spoon Award.
SERVICE AND HOSPITALITY
Brennan’s of Houston is legendary for their loyal, longstanding employees who have been part of the family for decades. Alex Brennan-Martin’s core business philosophy is focused on hiring the best people, from the kitchen to the front of house. Former chef Carl Walker helmed the kitchen for 16 years, and is now the restaurant’s General Manager. Executive Chef Danny Trace spent his entire career in various outposts of Commander’s Palace before landing at Brennan’s of Houston in 2009. Senior Captain Marcelino Cantu recently celebrated his 40th anniversary with the restaurant and was awarded Service Person of the Year by the Texas Restaurant Association in 2011. He is one of many captains who have spent decades with the restaurant.
Over the years, the Brennan’s of Houston kitchen has proven to be an incubator of talented chefs, with notable alumni including James Beard Award-winner and Food & Wine “Best New Chef” Chris Shepherd (Underbelly), Randy Evans (recently of Haven), and Mark Holley (Holley’s Seafood Restaurant & Oyster Bar), to name a few. Today, Chef Trace is fostering the skills of several young chefs who have demonstrated tremendous potential in the kitchen.
Alongside iconic customer favorites such as Turtle Soup and Shrimp Chippewa, Chef Trace’s constantly evolving menu pushes the boundaries of Creole cuisine, combining classic Southern-inspired dishes with innovative ingredients and techniques. Original dishes include:
- Hill Country Quail and Waffle – chicken-fried quail breast, goat cheese grits, mustard greens, and chicory coffee red eye gravy
- Southern Oxtail and Collards – Applewood bacon-braised oxtails, collard green timbale, Chef’s hot sauce, pork cracklin’, and potlikker jus
- Mr. Jimmy’s Gulf Oyster Roast – Hickory-smoked oysters roasted in a cast iron skillet, topped with jalapeño cornbread and nori flakes
- Hunter’s Sorghum Roasted Duck – Whole roasted in our special oven served with dirty duck fried rice, sunny side up quail egg, Muddy Pond Sorghum and Creole Shrubb pecan glaze
Brennan’s of Houston’s renowned events programming is unparalleled, and keeps Houstonians and visitors alike returning to the restaurant. Special celebrations include:
- NOLA Culinary Road Trip, led by Chef Trace and Head Mixologist Richard Middleton, in collaboration with the Houston Museum of Natural Science
- Guest chef dinners, including Executive Chef Tory McPhail of Commander’s Palace
- Cooking demonstrations with Chef Trace, including a summer “Date Night” series, as well as an appearance from “Soul Food Scholar” and James Beard Award-winning author Adrian Miller
- Courtyard socials, such as a Crawfish Boil and Fish Fry
- Holiday festivities, including Valentine’s Day, Mardi Gras, Easter (featured on Food Network), Mother’s and Father’s Day brunch, Thanksgiving dinner, and “Brunch with Santa”
ABOUT BRENNAN’S OF HOUSTON
Known as the crown jewel of Bayou City Creole cuisine and Southern hospitality, Brennan’s of Houston opened in 1967 as a sister restaurant to the world-famous Commander’s Palace in New Orleans. Frequently recognized as one of the top restaurants among both local and national press, the restaurant creates memorable dining experiences amid a charming New Orleans-style backdrop. With Executive Chef Danny Trace at the helm, Brennan’s of Houston’s classic yet innovative cuisine combines Texas ingredients and sensibilities with a focus on Creole flavors. In the dining room, the wait staff treat guests to a tailored food and wine experience enhanced by personable, professional service and elegant ambiance. In 2014, proprietor Alex Brennan-Martin was included in the Greater Houston Restaurant Association Houston Hall of Honor, the restaurant was featured among the Houston Chronicle’s Top 100 Restaurants, and the Brennan family was awarded the Food Arts Silver Spoon Award.