Soundbites: Chris Shepherd Thinks Montrose is the “Heart of the City”

By | July 24, 2014
Credit: Julie Soefer

In a recent interview, we asked Chris Shepherd all about his journey to the James Beard Award. What didn’t make it into the story were some of the reasons why he chose Montrose for Underbelly’s location:

“I worked in Houston for a long time and there was no other spot in the city that I wanted to open up a restaurant more than Montrose. It’s the heartbeat of the city in my opinion. Just the amazing heart. When I was working back in ’97 and ’98 I realized that. It’s where I want to be. When the opportunity arose, I thought, ‘This is perfect.’ I get a lot of people that come in from the neighborhood and tell me, ‘Thank you so much, this is awesome.’ I hope that the majority of people feel that way, because we want to give back to the community, we want to be a part of Montrose. I don’t think it’d work as well in any other neighborhood. It wasn’t about just making money. It was about finding a home and being in the right place.”

He also told us some of the places where he enjoys hanging out when not traveling or working in Underbelly’s kitchen:

“I actually really love to eat at El Real. I love to eat at Aladdin. I love Catbirds, Anvil of course, Niko Niko’s. I just like the smaller little restaurants. Where do I eat the most? It’s probably Aladdin. That pita bread? C’mon. You talk about the South and restaurants in the South, it’s like the classic meat and threes. That is a Houston version of a meat and three.”

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The Montrose Management District
board workshop meeting scheduled for April 3
has been postponed indefinitely.