[Pictured above: Shanna Jones of Urban Swank, Joy Sewing of Houston Chronicle, & Felice Sloan of Urban Swank judging last year’s Power of the Palate bartending competition]

Urban Swank has partnered with Houston Black Restaurant Week (HOUBRW) to support the much-anticipated event and its goal to increase the awareness, support and patronization of black restaurants and chefs in the Greater Houston area.

Returning for its second year of flavorful festivities, HOUBRW will offer prix-fixe dining menus for brunch, lunch and dinner at participating restaurants from April 17-30, 2017. Expect to see many of your favorites join the cause including newcomer Kitchen 713 along with Holley’s SeafoodBoogie’s BBQ, The Isles Eatery & Rum Bar, Live Oak, Cool Runnings Jamaican Bar & Grill, Dolce Lounge & Bistro, OGUN Art & Wine, Phil & Derek’s, Prospect Park, Scrappy Brown’s, Sunshine’s, Etta’s Kitchen, Ray’s BBQ, Cafe Abuja, Reggae Hut, Esther’s Cajun Cafe, D’Marco’s Pizzeria, and Lucille’s (additional restaurants to be announced soon).

Felice and Javani King at last year’s NOSH event

In conjunction to the restaurant showcase, HOUBRW will host a series of special events including:

  • AROMA  a three-course dinner/discussion at Live Oak Bar & Grill with a panel of restaurant industry and business leaders who will share their knowledge about entering the franchise restaurant business
  • NOSH – a culinary showcase and competition featuring best bites from black caterers and chefs to honor the contributions of those who do not have a brick and mortar restaurant, but equally deserve to have their cuisine highlighted
  • SOUNDBITES – a food truck music festival with live music and some of Houston’s hottest DJs
  • ART OF FLAVOR  –  a five-course pop-up dinner with wine pairing featuring jazz music and the amazing cuisine of Chef Jonny Rhodes of “coming soon” restaurant, Indigo
  • POWER OF THE PALATE  – a bartending battle to celebrate the end of Houston Black Restaurant Week

Creative cocktail from last year’s Power of the Palate competition

Over 40 caterers and chefs will participate in the NOSH Culinary Showcase serving up their best appetizers, entrees and desserts. Urban Swank will select one winner and present an Urban Swank NOSH Awards in each of the three categories:

  • Best Bite will be awarded to a culinary professional based on appearance, taste, and aroma;
  • Most Creative will be awarded based on creativity in use of ingredients (resulting in a “new” and “imaginative” dish);
  • Showmanship will be awarded based on table/booth appearance, presentation, and general theme

Houston is now recognized as one of the leading culinary destinations in the United States with blacks making significant contributions to the local food scene. This campaign will serve as platform for exposure to the variety of well-accomplished black restaurant owners, executive chefs, and catering companies, who have created a legacy of providing delicious food.

A portion of the proceeds from each meal purchased through this year’s HOUBRW is donated to the Blue Triangle Community Center for the renovation of their commercial kitchen which will utilized by budding caterers and the community at-large. For more information about Houston Black Restaurant Week, visit http://www.houbrw.com.

The Urban Swank Girls

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