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After Two Years In Business, Mascalzone on Shepherd Is Closing—Updated

Rigatoni at Mascalzone


Italian classics like Rigatoni Alla Norma were served at the now-closing Mascalzone on Shepherd.
Photo by Phaedra Cook

Posted: March 26, 2017 at 11:02 am   /   by   /   comments (0)

Houston Food Finder received a tip that the Mascalzone location at 1500 Shepherd is closing. An employee of the restaurant who did not want to be named confirmed the information, saying that the last dinner service will be tonight (Sunday, March 26). The employee also said he believed the reason was a combination of slow business and high rent. Houston Food Finder has left messages for multiple Mascalzone marketing representatives to see if there is an official statement and will update this article if we get one.

Update, 3/27/17, 1:55 a.m.: We received the following statement from a Mascalzone representative.

To all Mascalzone’s beloved friends and family, we are happy to announce that Mascalzone is going back to our original roots at Westheimer location. We value authenticity and vow to provide the most professional service. We feel that merging Shepherd with Westheimer will achieve that goal. Thank you all for your support and we look forward to your visit at Westheimer.

This second location of Mascalzone launched in January of 2015, and, for a time, featured the talents of chef Alberto Baffoni, friend and Italian culinary school classmate of owner and former Olympic boxer, Andrea Magi. Baffoni later left to open a restaurant with a different company, Bistecca Italian Steakhouse on Westheimer. After his departure, though, the restaurant continued offering the diverse menu and and a wide breadth of classic Italian dishes,

According to the employee we spoke with, Mascalzone’s original, larger West Houston outpost at 12126 Westheimer is expected to remain open. The more full-fledged restaurant sports a central brick pizza oven; something the smaller Shepherd location just wasn’t big enough to show off.