The restaurant scene in Houston is quite dynamic. I can’t name another city whose food scene is as robust and diverse as ours. Each year Houston goes through this period of restaurant mania, where a new restaurant opens every week. With that comes the unfortunate reality that for every one new restaurant that opens, three will close. I totally made this statistic up, but it feels accurate.
That being said, when it comes to Houston’s Black owned restaurants the scenario is even more critical. Over the years Houston’s Black restaurant scene has experienced its share of ebbs and flows. With the biggest upset being the back-to-back closures of two of our more high-end restaurants, Davis St. and Holley’s Seafood and Oyster Bar , a couple years back. Well, this year the owners behind both concepts banned together to “bring that old thang back!” Davis St. at Hermann Park officially reopened earlier this fall with Chef Mark Holley at the helm.
Let me just say, I stan for Chef Mark Holley. I’ve been a die hard ride or die since his Pesce days. He was one of THE first black chefs I ever met in Houston. Needless to say my heart was a tad heavy after receiving the news that Holley’s had closed post hurricane Harvey. I perked right on up though, after hearing that Chef Holley was moving on to become Davis St. at Hermann Park’s new Executive Chef.
As an avid supporter of all things black, my goal was to visit Davis St., and support Chef Holley as soon as the doors opened. But the way my life is setup, that didn’t happen. I finally got the opportunity to visit for dinner and the experience was just as spectacular as I’d imagined it would be.
Davis St. at Hermann Park (5925 Almeda Rd A, Houston, TX 77004) anchors the Mosaic, a residential hi-rise located across from Houston’s historic Hermann Park. The restaurant’s masculine, sleek, black and green interior is the perfect back drop for happy hour. Belly up to their spacious bar for signature cocktails, bar bites, flatbreads, and $1 Gulf Oysters.
Given my career in events, I am always on the hunt for restaurants with private rooms. Davis St. offers a few options that can be utilized for private meetings, dinners and large gatherings. The BlackBloggerClique hosted our holiday dinner here and the 14 of us were accommodated with ease.
Prior to Davis St. closing in 2017, I’d only visited once, and I only recall eating Chef Javani King’s crispy thai shrimp. The current menu has Chef Holley written all over. I could be wrong, but I feel like the bulk of the menu is from Holley’s previous seafood and oyster bar. Not complaining about that at all. It was actually quite comforting to see that a few of my favorite dishes from there are on the menu. Items like Chef’s famous Parker House rolls, Caribbean mussels, peanut soup and Gulf Charbroiled Oysters top the list of dishes you should try.
Parker House Rolls. Drum Mousse, Pickled Grapes and Pimento Cheese.
Alaskan Halibut with Crabmeat
If none of those options entice you then mosey on down to the Chef’s Classic’s section of the menu. Chef Holley puts his literal foot in each dish listed. The Alaskan Halibut & Crabmeat dish is killer good. Although I only had a bite, I could have easily eaten my tablemate’s entire entree. In one breathe. The smoky seafood mezcal cocktail, Vivian’s truffle Mac, Crabmeat Deviled Eggs, Crispy Thai Shrimp and grilled octopus are deserving of an honorable mention as well. Stellar!
In addition to the savory dishes, the desserts at Davis St. certainly can not go unmentioned. Chef Holley’s signature coconut cake and velvety key lime cheesecake were absolutely delicious.
Davis St. at Hermann Park is where you need to be. Period.
Chef Holley and his staff have transformed Davis St. into everything it needed to be and then some. From the top notch food, to the amazing service, and relaxed ambiance- this restaurant embodies the true spirit of Black excellence. Add them to the top of your ‘Restaurants to visit in Houston’ list.