Daniel, left, and Benjamin Berg have big plans for Carmelo's.

Image: Jenn Duncan

Big changes are afoot at Carmelo's Cucina Italiana. Now under the ownership of Benjamin Berg and brother/executive chef Daniel Berg, the restaurant is undergoing interior and exterior renovations. Thus, Carmelo's is closed and is scheduled to reopen in late spring.

“We ask that our supporters stay patient while we make several exciting design and menu improvements," said Benjamin Berg in a statement. "Daniel and I promise to reopen with a new and improved concept that we are confident will be received well by the community."

We have more details about the newest location of Perry's Steakhouse & Grille, the first to open inside the Loop. Set for a Feb. 11 opening, Perry's at 1997 W. Gray St. can accommodate about 350 in two stories. The first floor will include Bar 79, whose island bar should be a highlight. The main dining room will be upstairs. There'll be private dining areas on both floors, and patio seating downstairs. 

The new Perry's will be open 4-10 p.m. Monday-Thursday, 11 a.m.-10 p.m. Friday, 4-10 p.m. Saturday, and 4-9 p.m. Sunday.

There's an all-new katsu spot in the Vintage Lake area. Katsu Bar & Noodle, a concept born in Los Angeles, is now open at 15556 Cutten Road. Its the first Houston location of Katsu Bar & Noodle; its menu includes build-your-own katsu plates with options including pork, chicken, beef, shrimp, and fish. Noodle dishes include udon and spaghetti, and the restaurant is also serving a variety of milk tea, slushes, and smoothies.

Houston can use some Korean barbecue, and Bori Restaurant is aiming to bring it home. Bori, which plans to open in the spring at 1453 Witte Road in Shadow Oaks, near other stalwart Korean eateries like Korea Garden and Jung Deun Jib, promises a menu of South Korean barbecue. 

After opening over the summer, La Vista 101 went through a bit of a transitionary period. Executive chef J.D. Woodward left after a few months, and in the time since, owner Greg Gordon has rebooted the menu. Gordon, who says he's now hands-on every day, is assuming the role of chef and presenting a menu that hearkens back to his original La Vista in Briargrove. Menu items include grilled Spanish octopus, the beloved goat cheese burrata, pork tenderloin, shrimp n' grits, New York strip, grilled salmon, and La Vista lasagna. It's open 11 a.m.-2 p.m. and 5-9 p.m. Monday-Friday, and 5-10 p.m. Saturday.

I'm sure it's everyone's dream to drink while surrounded by Legos, which is why The Brick Bar is a thing, and it's coming to Houston from July 4-7. Essentially this is a pop-up that includes more than a million Lego blocks; no, the building itself isn't built of Legos, but plenty of things in the bar are, from chairs to ping-pong tables to wall displays. Check out the Brick Bar website to get a sense of just how fun, Instagrammable, and wild it can get. The venue is TBD, and tickets are $25. 

The 7-7-7 Courtyard Bar Menu is back at Brennan's of Houston. For $7, get one of seven appetizers, or one of seven cocktails, or one of seven glasses of wine, from 2-7 p.m. daily. And appetizers include options like crispy Gulf fish boulette balls, tabasco jack shrimp, and wood-grilled oysters.

Peli Peli Kitchen has changed its menu, which now includes peri peri chicken. At either the Spring Branch or Independence Heights (inside Whole Foods 365) locations, you can order the chicken marinated in peri peri spices for 24 hours. Options include a quarter chicken, boneless thigh, or cornish hen, and sauces include lemon herb, barbecue Peri Peri, Peri Peri, and The Blitz, the spiciest of flavors. The overhauled menu also includes tacos, sandwiches (including the South African JoBurger), and Portuguese plates including a beef fajita and surf and turf.

Last week we reported that sister concept Peli Peli was named in a lawsuit that alleges executive chef and co-owner Paul Friedman sexually harassed a former server.  

Whiskey Cake Baybrook and Basil Hayden's are teaming up for a whiskey pairing dinner scheduled for 7-10 p.m. Tuesday. At $65 per person, the five-course meal includes steak frites, jumbo lump crab cake, roasted fennel-carrot bisque, spiced cake, and Cobb salad. Basil Hayden is pairing its beverages with each plate. Call 832-558-2253 to reserve.

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