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Comparing Christian's Tailgate to Burger King and Subway is pretty stupid. 

 

Just saying...

 

It's a popular local joint with a solid burger and a proven concept. The downtown location is even nicer than their Washington Avenue one and I can see it being exactly the type of place that can lure folks downtown. I'd be very surprised if it doesn't flourish. 

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Went to a preview event here last week.  Food was great but what stood out for me was the views from the outdoor deck.  Cocktail hour is definitely going on the list for out-of-town guests.  

There's no such thing as "taco critical mass."

@CrockpotandGravel, I think I speak for everyone here when I say that we greatly appreciate your contributions to this site, and I’m grateful for the information that you’re able to hunt down out of s

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Its all about the product. I was in the restaurant and bar business for 17 years in another lifetime and a perfect example is

Barnaby's. They serve good food at reasonable prices and are very consistent and they are getting a good lunch crowd and are going to

be expanding their hours. They're in a location that has had several failures. Niko NIko's kills em in the park. Theres always a lot of people at Trebeards. All of these I just mentioned have to compete with restaurants in the tunnels and yet they still draw good

crowds even though their customers have to walk in the heat or rain or cold weather. If the food is good people will come. Remember

that when these new residential projects get on line these people will be street pedestrians and won't be going down in tunnels to find a place. This is going to change the face of downtown when all of the new housing get filled. These people won't have access to the

tunnels for the most part except during lunch. At some point down the road I predict that many of the restaurants and delis and shops

will see that they need a presence on the streets to take advantage of all of the people walking around at night. Probably not in my

lifetime but I promise you younger haifers won't believe how much of a change is going to happen. Its really an exciting time for

Houston's downtown.

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Remember that when these new residential projects get on line these people will be street pedestrians and won't be going down in tunnels to find a place.

 

that's a big question mark. I hope you're right. But what's more likely is we have another One Park Place. Expensive rents that attract corporate apartments and or renters that keep an apartment in downtown, but don't actually live there. Not exactly people who are making that part of downtown a more vibrant neighborhood.

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that's a big question mark. I hope you're right. But what's more likely is we have another One Park Place. Expensive rents that attract corporate apartments and or renters that keep an apartment in downtown, but don't actually live there. Not exactly people who are making that part of downtown a more vibrant neighborhood.

While it is likely true that there are some corporate renters or weekenders at OPP, trust me, a lot of the building is living there full time.

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I went by there about an hour ago. I had plans at Hotel Icon but decided to swing by and take a look.

UT vs Cal game was on, so i was expecting a large crowd.

Nope.

Yes some people were there, but not like the other bars on Main Street and Congress. Patio was open but empty. All in all...ehhh.

 

Signage is going to be a must if this bar is going to survive.

 

 

 

post-3351-0-84392900-1442721645_thumb.jp

 

Edit. Pic attached this time.

Edited by 102IAHexpress
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cspwal said it perfectally.

 

The biggest problem I can see for Christian's is the lack of noticability from the heavily traveled main street/market square area.  You don't really notice its there unless you're next to it.  A sidewalk sign might help - one that hangs out over the sidewalk - but those seem rare in downtown

 

The bar is kind of on a island compared to the other main street bars. Saturday night pub crawlers on the main street north/south pub crawl have to make a major diversion to get there. It's essentially by the courthouse.

 

On weekdays there is no diversion because travelers are naturally walking east/west to or from the courthouse. Thus the importance of catering to daytime lunch time crowds.

 

Does anyone remember if burger king and subway who both shared that same location closed in the evenings and weekends? I can't remember. Did they only cater to weekday lunch crowds?

 

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I guess I don't understand.

Take a walk down Main Street. It is littered with the well-signed facades of failed bars and restaurants. Businesses fail or succeed based on their business model, niche, and execution. While I recognize that a good location is important, we are talking about 2 blocks from main here, not two miles.

I would also suggest that new retail businesses take time to establish themselves. Two weeks? come-on! There hasn't even been enough time for them to put together their first marketing campaign. Man, the patio isn't even finished! Perhaps in 6 months it will be a problematic failure or perhaps a huge success but, frankly, I find this discussion odd. Comparing the place to Burger King? Really? Suggesting it will fail because of a location two blocks off of main? Suggesting it will fail because the last two tenants (burger kind and subway) both failed? Under that logic, they should just level the building and turn it into a parking lot. Surely, no retail can ever work there.

Retail (and especially restaraunts/bars) is especially tough to make a go of. If Christians fails (and it might), the two block walk from main will likely be very low on the list as to why.

Personally, I am going again today and a number of my buddies that I mentioned the place to are also planing to go too.

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Funny!

I went to Christians Downtown today at about 1pm. Football season, true. But, the place was SOLD OUT. There wasn't a chair at the bar or a single table available. Standing room only. The crowd was mostly in their 20's and early thirties. Lots of "Team" shirts to be seen on the men and women. Looks like word is already starting to spread (at least for game days). I took a pass and decided not to stand. I went over to flying saucer. On my walk, I passed a bunch of now defunct bars on Main (apparently the "best location") and walked into a half empty Flying Saucer. Better beer selection, but not as good food.

One man's experience today.

Edited by UtterlyUrban
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Comparing the place to Burger King? Really? Suggesting it will fail because of a location two blocks off of main? Suggesting it will fail because the last two tenants (burger kind and subway) both failed? Under that logic, they should just level the building and turn it into a parking lot. Surely, no retail can ever work there.

 

Yes Burger King.

In a way Burger King and Subway had it easier. They have instant brand recognition.

Don't have to worry about alcohol and TABC, etc.

Don't have huge Comcast/Direct TV bills each month.

Have a proven business model that is profitable.

Proven system, that litterly 16 year olds can execute.

Resources of huge corporations.

etc,...

Yet, still failed at that location.

 

Doing the same thing over and over again and expecting a different result is insane. So yes under that logic it may be better to use that space as something else. Maybe not a parking lot but some other industry besides retail. Nothing wrong with that.

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Yes Burger King.

In a way Burger King and Subway had it easier. They have instant brand recognition.

Don't have to worry about alcohol and TABC, etc.

Don't have huge Comcast/Direct TV bills each month.

Have a proven business model that is profitable.

Proven system, that litterly 16 year olds can execute.

Resources of huge corporations.

etc,...

Yet, still failed at that location.

Doing the same thing over and over again and expecting a different result is insane.......

Yes, it is. That's likely why McDonalds didn't open there.

The "same" thing is not a national fast food joint and a locally owned sports bar. Those are two "different" things. And, if the crowd today is any indication (and I will grant you that it may not be), your position may well prove to be very wrong. Or, perhaps it will be correct. The truth is, I don't know and, frankly, neither do you. The only thing that I know for certain is:

1) I like the place and

2) it was sold out today at 1pm.

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The Houston Downtown Management District and Weingarten Art Group are seeking submissions for temporary art installations above the dollar store on Main and Walker. The space is 40x60 feet. This seems to be the first of many public art projects to be launched before the NCAA tournament and super bowl. Should be beneficial to the corner but not as beneficial as actually getting rid of the dollar store.

 

http://weingartenartgroup.com/request-for-submissions-artwork-designs-for-main-street-marquee-in-houston-texas/

 

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Well with all of the discussion I decided to make Christian's my destination for lunch today.

I spent the morning taking pictures around the city and did a lot of walking.

I met one of the owners Zack and general manager Blake after lunch. it was almost 2:00

when I got in line to order. It was only about five people but still this was at 2:00.

There were maybe twenty people eating and having a good time.

I had the small cheese burger and fries and the burger was incredible. The fries were crisp and very good.

Zack said that he has been involved with bars in downtown since the mid nineties, with Power Tools and several other ventures.

Just to clarify this is on Congress and Fannin on the south side of Congress.

I asked Zack how the start of business went and whether it met their expectations.

First he made it clear that they wanted a soft opening without any fanfare so they could grow at a nice pace and be able to handle

the business as it grew. Which is a very savvy approach. I know from experience that if you can't handle the crush from a lot of advertising you hurt yourself more with unhappy customers that might be hesitant to come back.

Second he made it clear that they knew how to advertise and that would come. I know they sponsor Sports 610 at their four different

locations for live broadcasts and I can promise you that there will be no grass growing in the sidewalks around this sports bar ever.

Congratulations on an outstanding weekend.

Oh did I tell you they had the busiest weekend they have ever had at any location. So like I said before if you have a name around town for good food, fun and good service you can open anywhere if people live or work in the area.

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Well with all of the discussion I decided to make Christian's my destination for lunch today.

I spent the morning taking pictures around the city and did a lot of walking.

I met one of the owners Zack and general manager Blake after lunch. it was almost 2:00

when I got in line to order. It was only about five people but still this was at 2:00.

There were maybe twenty people eating and having a good time.

I had the small cheese burger and fries and the burger was incredible. The fries were crisp and very good.

Zack said that he has been involved with bars in downtown since the mid nineties, with Power Tools and several other ventures.

Just to clarify this is on Congress and Fannin on the south side of Congress.

I asked Zack how the start of business went and whether it met their expectations.

First he made it clear that they wanted a soft opening without any fanfare so they could grow at a nice pace and be able to handle

the business as it grew. Which is a very savvy approach. I know from experience that if you can't handle the crush from a lot of advertising you hurt yourself more with unhappy customers that might be hesitant to come back.

Second he made it clear that they knew how to advertise and that would come. I know they sponsor Sports 610 at their four different

locations for live broadcasts and I can promise you that there will be no grass growing in the sidewalks around this sports bar ever.

Congratulations on an outstanding weekend.

Oh did I tell you they had the busiest weekend they have ever had at any location. So like I said before if you have a name around town for good food, fun and good service you can open anywhere if people live or work in the area.

 

Doesn't matter.  We all now know that if Burger King can't make it at that location, nobody can.  ;-)

 

Thanks for the informative report, bobruss.

 

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Oh did I tell you they had the busiest weekend they have ever had at any location.

When I went on Sunday at 1pm only to find no place to sit, I must say that I really was shocked (and pleased). For them to have had the "busiest weekend ever" when compared to their other locations, they must have had a really good Saturday too.

I wish them much success. Opening just before football season was smart. Hopefully the trend will continue ...... But hopefully not too much more! I want a seat on a Sunday!

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Think one of the recommendation that was part of the Downtown revitalize study was to repeal that ordinance, don't know if it ever came to be

 

Interesting.

 

So a business in downtown can't submit an on-premise sign permit application with the CoH like every other business in the city and county can?

 

I didn't know that.

 

I thought if they wanted to put one up they just needed a permit.

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Hold on.  Let's not get carried away with disinformation about downtown signage AGAIN.  There are restrictions on signage downtown that do not apply elsewhere (although most of those restrictions apply to certain other designated areas of town) .  There is not and never has been a ban on lighted signs downtown. 

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The District looks to be close to opening.  Furniture and signage is in place.  This is in the Chase garage building, across the street from the Rice and the new Hines tower at 609 Main.

21638164481_106c3bbe75_c.jpg

 

Still much work to be done inside Morningside Thai, but they are busting their asses and working on it late. Window decals are up.

21007965983_8d8a23dbea_c.jpg

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The District looks to be close to opening.  Furniture and signage is in place.  This is in the Chase garage building, across the street from the Rice and the new Hines tower at 609 Main.

21638164481_106c3bbe75_c.jpg

 

Still much work to be done inside Morningside Thai, but they are busting their asses and working on it late. Window decals are up.

21007965983_8d8a23dbea_c.jpg

 

Is this from the District 7 Grill folks?

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Went today with 6 co-workers. It was very busy; ordered at bar got our burgers in 10-15 minutes. Everyone loved the place, clean, TV's were on, parked one block away. Walked to the Chase Tower afterwards which probably burned one onion ring off.

 

This place doesn't need any luck or help - it's going to do great business. Plus it's right there off main, looks further on a map, walking outside you can easily see Hooneymooners, ect.

 

Good to go. Wish CT all the best.

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Went today with 6 co-workers. It was very busy; ordered at bar got our burgers in 10-15 minutes. Everyone loved the place, clean, TV's were on, parked one block away. Walked to the Chase Tower afterwards which probably burned one onion ring off.

 

This place doesn't need any luck or help - it's going to do great business. Plus it's right there off main, looks further on a map, walking outside you can easily see Hooneymooners, ect.

 

Good to go. Wish CT all the best.

Are you referring to The District?

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Went today with 6 co-workers. It was very busy; ordered at bar got our burgers in 10-15 minutes. Everyone loved the place, clean, TV's were on, parked one block away. Walked to the Chase Tower afterwards which probably burned one onion ring off.

 

This place doesn't need any luck or help - it's going to do great business. Plus it's right there off main, looks further on a map, walking outside you can easily see Hooneymooners, ect.

 

Good to go. Wish CT all the best.

 

Allison Cook of the Chronicle just reviewed Christian's Tailgate Downtown. You can read the review on chron.com, but it's not very good unfortunately. She graded their burger a D but said good things about the onion rings.

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The District (or whatever it's called) across Main from 609 Main was pretty packed today.

 

I went during lunch.  They are on their "Sneak Peak" menu prior even to soft opening.  Needless to say, they are still learning here and the food could use a bit of work.  I have been to most of their locations though and they will clean it up.  Good build out of the interior.

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Stopped by Moonshiners and Christians this past weekend. Moonshiners had a good crowd and seems to be doing fine. Christians was hoping on Sunday. Not a "sell out" like the first football Sunday that I stopped by a few weeks ago but still quite crowded....... The waitstaff was hustling beers and burgers routinely. Interestingly, on the beautiful weekend, no one was outside on the well appointed patio when I was there.

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This Starbucks will be a good addition to the area. I personally wish it was not a Chain but a locally owned business going in here but, I can see that this will fit well with the convention crowd.

Christians Tail gate was busy Saturday in the early afternoon. In the lat afternoon Pastry War was a tad empty. Early evening Moonshiners was quite full.

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i dont get this huge thing about their burger, its really nothing special. since the new owners came in, their fries are AWFUL

Yeah, burgers at the White Oak location suffered after the ownership change. Still, hope the downtown Christian's does well.  (How many years has the ground floor of the Scanlan Building boasted that "Live Sports Bar Coming" sign?)

 

Meanwhile, I'll plot my next visit to Jackson Street BBQ. Definitely out of the way but well worth it. 

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Yeah, burgers at the White Oak location suffered after the ownership change. Still, hope the downtown Christian's does well. (How many years has the ground floor of the Scanlan Building boasted that "Live Sports Bar Coming" sign?)

Meanwhile, I'll plot my next visit to Jackson Street BBQ. Definitely out of the way but well worth it.

Here at Jackson Street BBQ and it is busy! Everyone is getting ready for the game!

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La Fisheria, that's good news for downtown.  My 1st experience at Jackson St. BBQ was disappointing, but I do plan to try it again:  went on a quiet Sunday, BBQ was somewhere between room-temperature and cold, as if partially reheated from the day before.  My impression was that it would be rather good, if at the right temp.  The staff was great, very friendly and helpful.  

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La Fisheria, that's good news for downtown.  My 1st experience at Jackson St. BBQ was disappointing, but I do plan to try it again:  went on a quiet Sunday, BBQ was somewhere between room-temperature and cold, as if partially reheated from the day before.  My impression was that it would be rather good, if at the right temp.  The staff was great, very friendly and helpful.  

 

Yeah I agree about Jackson St. I've been a couple times. Eh. Nothing special.

 

The restaurant is a typical bbq restaurant setup, meaning it's counter service. No hostess, no waiter waiting on you. Yet they have one of those iPad point of sale machines at the register that forces you to click on "no tip". I'm not stingy with tips at a typical restaurant, but come on, this is counter service. And who is receiving this tip?

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Yeah I agree about Jackson St. I've been a couple times. Eh. Nothing special.

 

The restaurant is a typical bbq restaurant setup, meaning it's counter service. No hostess, no waiter waiting on you. Yet they have one of those iPad point of sale machines at the register that forces you to click on "no tip". I'm not stingy with tips at a typical restaurant, but come on, this is counter service. And who is receiving this tip?

 

I find your consistent and predictable negativity almost... inspiring.

 

Jackson St. is good. Is it the best bbq in the city? No. Is it better than Pappas (or anything else downtown)? Yes. By quite a bit. Prices are pretty reasonable too.

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I find your consistent and predictable negativity almost... inspiring.

 

Jackson St. is good. Is it the best bbq in the city? No. Is it better than Pappas (or anything else downtown)? Yes. By quite a bit. Prices are pretty reasonable too.

 

Negative?

 

I was just agreeing with what ArchFan said. He found it disappointing but wants to try it again. He liked the staff.

 

What are we supposed to do when we talk about our experiences at a restaurant? Lie?

 

Jackson St. is Awesome!, (does that make you feel better?)

 

It's not better than Pappas by quite a bit. By saying stuff like that you're doing a disservice to good bbq and to readers who take this forum seriously. It's about the same quality as Pappas (but lacks a drive thru and with less reliable hours) and maybe a little better than Otto's downtown locations. I would say Otto's has a much broader menu than just bbq, but they call themselves otto's BBQ, so just comparing otto's bbq and Jackson st. bbq, then Jackson st's is better than Ottos.

 

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