Cane Rosso’s Montrose Location Is Shuttering; Heights Spot Remaining Open

Cane Rosso owner Jay Jerrier says that he’s closing the location at 4306 Yoakum in Houston’s Montrose neighborhood. The last day of service is on December 30 and all alcoholic beverages are going to be sold at happy hour prices to clear out the remaining inventory.

The lease is in the process of being sold to a yet-to-be-named restaurant group that is reworking the space. While it’s not a completely done deal yet, he expects it to be finalized in the next few days.

While Cane Rosso specializes in VPN-certified Neopolitan pizza made with special flour and other ingredients imported from Italy, Jerrier made special effort to connect the restaurant to the Houston clientele when he hired chefs Jonathan “JJ” Jones (formerly of El Big Bad and Beaver’s) and Matt Wommack (previously of Prohibition Supperclub & Bar and Uchi) in April 2017. Ultimately, the chef additions and menu changes didn’t improve sales to a sufficient level.

Chef Jonathan Jones during his time at Cane Rosso’s Houston and Austin locations. Photo by Jeff Amador.

“The Montrose location just always struggled to gain traction in the neighborhood,” he wrote. “We had a lot of staff turnover and service challenges. JJ and Matt did a great job of upgrading the menu and quality of the non-pizza dishes — but we could never get sales up to where the restaurant could sustain itself.”

Jerrier says he’s relocating some of the Montrose staff to the Cane Rosso at 1835 North Shepherd as well as to some of the locations in Dallas-Fort Worth and Austin. He notes that there are still a few employees who need new jobs. (If you’re a Houston restaurant or bar owner looking for staff, email us and we can relay that message.)

“This definitely sucks as it is our first and only restaurant closed in eight years — but for the last two years, we literally tried everything that has worked at our other locations,” said Jerrier.

Cane Rosso Star Wars
Star Wars-themed specials are an annual staple at all the Cane Rosso locations. Photo courtesy of Cane Rosso.

Jerrier, who also runs a dog rescue and fostering organization, also wants Houston to know that he’s worked hard to be a good neighbor “even though we came from evil Dallas.” Besides Neopolitan pizza and other Italian dishes, Cane Rosso is known for dog-friendly patios and Star Wars-themed “May the Fourth” parties and dishes.

Despite this closing, Jerrier still has his eyes on the Greater Houston dining market with a possible focus change to the suburbs or outlying towns. He’s considering the possibility of opening a Zoli’s New York Pizza Tavern, a restaurant that Jerrier started in Dallas and moved to Addison. Neighborhoods like Katy and The Woodlands have shown significant growth in the dining market, so it’s unlikely that the Heights Cane Rosso is going to be Jerrier’s only restaurant in the area for too long.

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