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Brennan’s of Houston to Re-Emerge this Fall One Year After Hurrican Ike

Posted on: March 3rd, 2009 by fcasio 10 Comments

Eighty Percent of Original John Staub Structure to be Restored; Brings 125 Jobs to Midtown

Houston Mayor Bill White and restaurateur Alex Brennan Martin announced at a press conference today that the esteemed Brennan’s of Houston would re-emerge at its long-standing Smith Street address this fall, just 13 months after having been damaged by fire as a result of Hurricane Ike. Slated to open in October 2009, the restored Brennan’s is expected to bring an additional 125 jobs back to Midtown.

“Adding jobs and welcoming back a Houston institution like Brennan’s to Midtown is all great for Houston,” said Mayor White. “Rebuilding this historic structure in the process is like extra sugar on our Banana’s Foster.”

Particularly in a downturn economy, the Houston community looks forward to the creation of 125 new jobs that range from service employees to managerial positions.

Eighty percent of the historic building, designed by the great Houston architect John Staub in 1930, will be restored. Houston-based Linbeck Construction – whose portfolio includes the Omni and St. Regis hotels in Houston – will oversee the project alongside Pin Oak Interests and Studio Red Architects whose architects have participated in such notable projects as Moody Gardens, Wortham Theater Center, and Texas Heart Institute.

“We didn’t burn down, we burned up,” said Brennan Martin. “We are honored and humbled by the outpouring of support we have received over the past year and are looking forward to opening our doors this fall and welcoming back our guests.”

Long before the Brennan’s put their name on the building in 1967, it was a Houston landmark. Designed by architect John F. Staub to house the Houston Junior League, the building’s façade was intended to evoke an image of the Vieux Carré. Today, the building is recognized as one of Houston’s most beautiful structures, having inspired the neighboring development of an area that is often touted as Houston’s French Quarter.

Additionally, Brennan-Martin is in dialogue with the City of Houston and Houston Parks and Recreation Department to relocate a mature tree from the Museum of Natural Science at Hermann Park. The tree will replace the historic Oak that shaded Brennan’s courtyard for over 40 years, which was lost in Hurricane Ike.

Forty-two years ago, the Brennan’s family of New Orleans opened the doors of Brennan’s of Houston, one of America’s most beloved dining destinations and the forerunner in serving Texas Creole cuisine. Led by Commander’s Palace Family of Restaurants co-owners Alex Brennan-Martin, his sister, Ti Adelaide Martin, and their cousin, Lally Brennan, Brennan’s remained on top by constantly innovating while remaining connected to its Creole roots and maintaining a familial level of warmth and hospitality. The Brennan family’s restaurants also include Commander’s Palace and Café Adelaide & the Swizzle Stick Bar in New Orleans and Commander’s Palace in Destin, Fla.

The Brennan’s kitchen has explored the vast spectrum of Creole’s evolution in the “Bayou City.” Cultural influences in South Texas and an abundance of fresh produce unique to the region have provided more than a few opportunities for delicious Texas variations on time-honored Louisiana themes. Along the way, the passionate Brennan’s team has received accolades establishing the restaurant as one of the finest in the city. Awards such as Exxon Mobil’s Four-Star designation beginning in 2000 and a nod from restaurant critic John Mariani in 1997 to former Executive Chef and General Manager, Carl Walker, as “one of America’s most influential chefs” are just a few of the accomplishments Brennan’s counts on its list of accolades. Brennan’s has also been regularly rated among Houston’s “Best” and “Most Popular” restaurants in the Zagat Survey.

Brennan’s of Houston
3300 Smith St.
Houston, TX 77006

Wagstaff Worldwide, Inc.
Amber Holst
(312) 943-6900

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10 Responses

  1. Susie Meischen says:

    Congratulations on building back one of Houston's best institutions! We were at Brennan's just a week before the fire celebrating our anniversary. You are so much a part of our lives here in Houston: Birthdays, Christmas, Baptism dinners, New Years Eve, and the wedding reception for our daughter. We cannot imagine Houston with out you! Can we come to your opening night?

  2. Lisa Bethea-Mitchell says:

    We are so excited that Brennan's is on it's way back. My husband and I got engaged there in 2005 and we have had several family celebrations at this wonderful establishment. We cannot wait to dine here once again. Our prayers and well-wishes go out to the family. Thank you all for the wonderful memories and those to come in the furture!

  3. Mia Moore says:

    I cannot tell you how thrilled my family is to know that Brennan's will re-open this fall. We have such wonderful memories dating back over twenty years. We will be checking back to see when we can book our first brunch! Thank you to the owners for not allowing this jewel in Houston to go away. We love Brennan's!! The Moore Family from Corpus Christi, Texas

  4. PHP says:

    I made 30 years with the company I work for last August (2008). My goal was to have my 30 year luncheon at Brennan's. I have not had my celebration yet because I am anxiously awaiting the return of Brennan's. I've been to several group luncheons there. I am originally from New Orleans, so I know the outstanding food and service of the Brennan family restaurants. I hope that the restaurant is ready this October so that my family and friends can enjoy the spectacular food and service at Brennan'sl!
    PHP from Houston, TX

  5. Ldelong says:

    Love Brennans.. the BEST restaurant in Houston ..we celebrate every major family birthday there. 16th, 30, 40, 50, 60, 80…Service is absolutely the best in Houston. If you have the best don't need to try the rest. Looking forward to your re0opening.
    Thank you.


  6. Clay S. Conrad says:

    How do I go about getting reservations?

  7. Ashae Kubicek says:

    My mother took me to Brennan's every Christmas season from the time I was 4 and then we went to a show downtown….My girls have been going with me and my mom for the past 8 years to Dinner and a show downtown….Christmas just wan't the same without Brennan's this past year….we (all 6 of us) cannot wait for OUR Christmas season to be as wonderful as it used to be before Ike.

  8. Joan Landry says:

    I will never forget the first time I enjoyed a meal at Brennan’s.
    One year after another family Thanksgiving with the women in the kitchen working and the men in front of the tv watching football, my mother said, “girls, we need to start a tradition of having a girls lunch for our birthdays.” The very first one of these lunches was at Brennan’s Sunday Brunch in the courtyard. I fell in love with Brennan’s that day. For the past twenty years we have carried on our tradition and your restaurant is my favorite.
    Another wonderful memory at Brennan’s was the Christmas before the fire. We managed to get a reservation for my husband, my daughter and her husband and myself on the night we we to attend the Nutcracker ballet, an annual Christmas treat for my daughter and I. The dinner was absolutely wonderful, the best Creole! The waiters and wine steward never seemed to be more than a step from our table. Your shuttle whisked us to the ballet where we finished our perfect evening with a magical ballet. I have never enjoyed an evening out as much as that night.
    I look forward with great anticipation to many more wonderful memories.

    Thank you Brennan’s of Houston, and thank you to your wonderful staff.

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