Popular Chef Bringing El Paso to the Heights with The 915

Vanessa Lomeli gained plenty of followers during her time at Habanero & the Guero.

By Timothy Malcolm March 18, 2021

The united colors of The 915.

Image: Becca Wright

You could drive 10 hours west for El Paso cuisine. Or you could go to The 915, which will open Monday at 2915 White Oak Dr in the Heights.

The 915 is the brainchild of Vanessa Lomeli, who Houston diners may know a little bit about. She was the chef at Habanero & the Guero (formerly Habanero & the Gringo). That restaurant wound up on the TV show Restaurant: Impossible. Never good news.

But the El Paso-born Lomeli earned praise because of her cooking. Now with The 915, she's determined to showcase a range of Tex-Mex dishes that speak to her childhood.

Thus, you'll get enchiladas (green chile, red chile, mole), green chili queso, and a couple fajitas. Flautas? Yes. Crispy tacos? Heck, yes.

But funkier stuff comes in the form of the Mexi-Dog, one of Lomeli's trademark dishes from her time at Habanero & the Guero. That's a hot dog topped with bacon, queso, mayonnaise, salsa verde, black beans, grilled onions, and fries. She's also bringing to The 915 the Juarez Dog (hot dog topped with bacon, mustard, mayo, ketchup, salsa, queso, beans, torreados, charred tomato, and fries). I know, our stomachs are rumbling, too. 

“When I think of food, I think of family and comfort, and that’s what I want The 915 to be for people,” said Lomeli in a press release. “At our new space in the Heights, we’ll be able to source only the freshest ingredients and to collaborate with artisan chefs and other creators who inspire us. I can’t wait to welcome the city to our restaurant and am so grateful for all the support we’ve already received.”  

When it opens, The 915 will be takeout only (11 a.m. to 9 p.m. Tuesday–Sunday), though there are plans to seat diners in its 3,500-square-foot space with a patio. The restaurant is also working on a liquor license; until that's resolved, The 915 will be BYOB.

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