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WestGrayGuy

Jefe Bar Mex Grill @ 502 Main

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The current renovation of this location is damn ugly in my opinion. The location is at 502 Main (corner of Main and Prarie) in the former Crazyhorse Cantina location.

I know that is an ideal location for a fantastic bar or restaurant. The architectural elements are there unfortunately covered by what it appears to be plywood. The name of the bar looks like it was cut out by a junior high shop class using a table saw.

The place seems to have a huge potential if some investor would spend some money on renovation rather than cheap crap that been there in the last few years.

I have also heard the food was crappy.

Thoughts/Opinions?

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Absolute and utter agreement.

Plywood covered with aluminum paint?! What...they ran out of cardboard?

That building could be a showcase, especially if the missing architraves (second definition) around the upstairs windows could be replicated and replaced.

Also, this building originally had a Mansard roof, and replacing it would definitely reenforce its Second Empire appearance.

Takes $$$. In a case such as this, it would seem appropriate for the city to offer some sort of tax abatement to return this building to its historic roots. Perhaps then they'd also find a more deserving tenant.

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Well, with any luck, they will be bought out (don't want to wish the place to fold, it would look bad) and a proper place to be put in.

I always hated the facade, and just hoped they were waiting to make more money to make themselves look better.

Ricco

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Does anyone know how the building happened to lose its third floor (the one with the mansard)? I wonder if there was a fire. It's just unusual for a floor to vanish while the rest of the building remains.

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I walk past Jefe at least once a week and every time I just shake my head. While renovations are going on to buildings next to and across from it, the painted over plywood looks more and more rag-tag. At the very least, they could've spurng for an actual sign with lighting like what's up at Suede.

It's also sad that they've done ZERO work on the building's second level. To more sophisticated customers, this speaks to the quality of the bar in general, and that's not good for business when you've got several more options downtown.

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From "Last of the Past. Houston Architecture 1847 to 1915" by William Scott Field:

"The Stegeman Building on Main"

"The building on Main Street built by Frederick W. Stegeman, a manufacturer of ornamental ironwork, was originally a two story Italianate style commercial building, erected by 1879. The need for extra lease space coupled with the desirability of updating the style of the building led Stegeman to construct a third floor hidden behind a mansard roof. Dormer windows allowed light ot penetrate this third floor, first occupied by a photographer...Prairie Avenue was given side-street status in this remodeling, evidenced by the new roof not continuing all the way down this facade and the original window treatments being left unaltered. In recent years, the building lost its Second Empire status when the mansard roof was removed during remodeling. Only the Italianate brackets remain to remind the viewer that this was indeed a commercial building of the last century. "

The are photos of the original building and also when the facade was covered by Churches Fried Chicken.

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Any pictures? I passed by and saw it slightly, but I guess it looks different at night time. I say anything is better than that Crazyhorse Cantina.

It can't look worse than this place. Or does it? I must say that Grasshopper looks very professionally done.

24732183.jpg

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Guest danax
From "Last of the Past.  Houston Architecture 1847 to 1915" by William Scott Field:

"The Stegeman Building on Main"

The are photos of the original building and also when the facade was covered by Churches Fried Chicken.

At least Church's is outta there. Sounds like the current owner is from Latin America, where hand-painted, misspelled signs with crooked letters are normal. (I'm sick of seeing crap like that around town, sorry).

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Here's a picture which shows this building when it still had the mansard roof. This isn't the first building I've seen which has had the roof/uppermost floor removed. Perhaps they're hard to maintain; and at one time mansard roofs were considered to be hopelessly old fashioned (and therefore ugly).

You can see what was meant by the William Scott Field quote from Subdude's post:"Prairie Avenue was given side-street status in this remodeling, evidenced by the new roof not continuing all the way down this facade..."

birds.jpg

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A couple of Patriots fans that I talked with SB week said that the facade to Grasshopper was one of the more charming things on Main Street. I've personally felt that it was trying too hard to look Irish/Scottish but apparently it's not as obnoxious in its intent as some other "attempts" around the country.

Thoughts?

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I believe Jefe is closed now. The lights have been off for the last couple of nights incuding this past weekend. A Slainte bartender told me they did not renew their liquor license.

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I believe Jefe is closed now.  The lights have been off for the last couple of nights incuding this past weekend.  A Slainte bartender told me they did not renew their liquor license.

If someone would like to check this, go to TABC's website and look up the address.

I'd do it myself, but they're available only as .zip files, and my zipper's stuck... :angry:

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I was downtown at 12:30am Sunday morning (although it was chilly, the whole area was "jumping" with activity. Partiers on every street) and The Jefe was closed.

If it is closed for good, I hope this is a opportunity for a more established reputable business.

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How can I look them up and whats the addy>

Click on the underlined TABC in my earlier post - it's a link to their site.

And I got my unzipper unstuck, and there is no liquor license currently listed for this address.

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Great location, bad bar. However, watch it be open this weekend... it seems to be open & closed, open & closed more times than I can count. One week, it was closed and seized for taxes, the next week it was open. I wonder where that cute bartender went though that was always there...

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Jefe sucks. People I've talked to who go there say that they don't ever feel like it's set up to have any staying power. It's like the owner runs a name out there six months to a year, does some "light" renovations to the interior and then closes up only to change again with a new gimmick and name (which might explain why they never do any work to the upstairs or put up any longterm signange/marquees).

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In the Houston Chronicle's Dining Guide section (Thursday, Dec. 16, 2004), Dai Huynh lists 'Jefe Bar Mex Grill' under "Restaurant closings".

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That building needs some love. A good power washing and a fresh coat of paint and I see this place as a nice upscale dept store. Oh well, gotta keep dreaming.

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Noticed this today.  Remodel permit is dated December of 2016

32246320054_8ca8e6cc77_b.jpg

 

Inspection was scheduled for 1/6/17.  Windows are blacked out, which they were not previously.  

32278057153_41faf8075e_b.jpg

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From previous page:  Noticed this today.  Remodel permit is dated December of 2016

 

There was no way this could have been ready for the Superb Owl. :ph34r:

Edited by mollusk
(adding context 'cause of the page change)
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For f_ck's sake can we please not get another f_cking taco/Mexican place down here.  Shit is one block from El Big Bad.

 

33798427056_f7255bf889_b.jpg

Edited by adr
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lights were on inside a week or so ago. Saw the inside...

 

Not sure if that's what it looked like before or if they have done work. I think if they want to compete they will need upgrade the interior from what I saw...

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Walked by and it looked like work has been done but still no clue as to what is going on. I hope they open a live music venue or a comedy club.

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They had the Interio Bar sign up on Main.  Forgot to take a picture.  Looks ready to open.

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Posted (edited)

 

On 1/12/2019 at 1:32 PM, kbates2 said:

They had the Interio Bar sign up on Main.  Forgot to take a picture.  Looks ready to open.

 

It's open, didn't go in as I was meeting friends elsewhere.  The sign wasn't lit up.  There are a few pictures on their Facebook page.

Edited by BeerNut

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21 hours ago, j_cuevas713 said:

I hope that sign is temporary cause it looks like ass 

IMO this business itself will be temporary. I’ve been twice (party hours) and if it’s any indication of business during working hours then this place is probably losing money fast.  My first impression is that they either rushed opening, or just didn’t put much money/work into it. The place is a GREAT size with a big square shape bar in the middle but that’s about all it has going for it if you ask me. 

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I have walked by several times.  They put no effort into this.  Mismatched tables and chairs, terrible lighting, zero ambiance.  Hopefully this building will get the restoration and tenant it deserves one day.  

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I stopped by here last weekend and as the previous two posts indicated, it seems they just rushed to open. I have no idea what they are going for with this place, the sign looks like it was created using Microsoft Paint, and doubt it stays open that long. 

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