UB Preserv Adds Patio and 4 for $5 Dumplings at Happy Hour
These days, many people are looking for a dose of comfort to offset the chilly weather and to shake off the 2020 blues. Warm, savory Chinese dumplings certainly fit that bill. That’s what UB Preserv at 1609 Westheimer is adding to its happy hour: four of chef Nick Wong’s dumplings for $5.
The happy hour is dine-in only. Of course, some people aren’t willing to currently sit in a dining room due to the COVID-19 pandemic. So, Underbelly Hospitality, the owner of UB Preserv, has added a 300-square-foot fenced patio that can accommodate 16 outdoor seats at socially distanced tables. As the group did at One Fifth, they have collaborated with Tellepsen Landscaping to create the outdoor space, which features artificial turf, galvanized-steel screens, blooming camellias in recycled planters, bistro lighting — and to combat the cold weather, outdoor heaters. The new patio debuts on the same day as dumpling happy hour: Wednesday, December 2.
The dumpling choices include the signature pork dumplings, Boudin Siu Mai and Pimento Cheese Krab Rangoons. (Note: imitation crab made from whitefish, usually pollock, has long been used in traditional crab rangoons.) There are also $1 oysters, both roasted with nam jim butter and served raw with Jamaica mignonette. (Nam jim is a Thai dipping sauce that includes lime juice, garlic and thinly sliced hot peppers.)
Of course, happy hour isn’t happy hour without cocktails, and UB Preserv offers several for $7. These include a Spicy Mezcal Margarita, an Old Fashioned and Dumb Luck made with guava leaf-infused vodka, lemon and fassionola — a complex fruit syrup normally used in tiki cocktails that includes strawberry and passionfruit. In addition, a Montucky Cold Snack (a light beer considered the official brew of Montana but actually made in Wisconsin) is a mere $3. Those looking for something classy can indulge in a glass of Michel Armand Muscadet Sevre et Maine from the Loire Valley region of France for only $5. The full happy hour menu is online.
Happy hour runs Wednesday through Saturday from 5 to 6:30 p.m. Wednesdays are also when Wong serves his favorite Chinese-American dishes. “It’s something I always crave,” said Wong via press release. “This is the food I turn to for comfort, which is something we all need right now. For some people, it’s burgers or pizza or pasta, but for me it’s always Chinese-American food.” This Wednesday, the inaugural menu also features General Tso’s chicken with an egg roll, egg drop soup, white rice and wok-fried veggies. Guests can order à la carte or get the whole meal for $25. Unlike the happy hour dumplings, the Chinese-American meal is available for dine-in, takeout and delivery. There are also two special cocktails: frozen cà phê sữa đá spiked with bourbon and Year Of The Dog, a vodka cocktail infused with salted plums and lemon, and given a light fizz by adding a little sparkling water.
For reservations or details about ordering for pickup or delivery, visit the UB Preserv website.
Phaedra Cook has written about Houston’s restaurant and bar scene since 2010. She was a regular contributor to My Table magazine (now closed) and was the lead restaurant critic for the Houston Press for two years, eventually being promoted to food editor. Cook founded Houston Food Finder in November 2016 and has been its editor and publisher ever since.