Gatlin’s BBQ to open chicken and Gulf seafood concept

It’s no secret that pitmaster Greg Gatlin has been dreaming up a new restaurant concept specializing in chicken. But few details of the project, a sister restaurant to his wildly popular Gatlin’s BBQ, have been floated until now.

Gatlin announced Tuesday that the restaurant, Gatlin’s Fins & Feathers, will open late June at 302 W. Crosstimbers in the Independence Heights neighborhood where he grew up. Described as “a paean to beloved Gulf Coast comfort cuisine,” Fins & Feathers will serve fried chicken and Gulf seafood dishes including gumbo and oysters.

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Located in the former Herrera’s Mexicatessen Restaurant, Gatlin’s 3,000-square-foot restaurant will have seating for about 80. The choice of the site and neighborhood was intentional: The Gatlin family once frequented the Mexican restaurant, and Fins & Feathers is just over a mile from Bella Vista Missionary Baptist Church where Gatlin worships.

“It’s a neighborhood place, and we wanted it to feel that way: rustic, comfortable, and historic,” Greg Gatlin said. “It’s part of Independence Heights and we’re embracing that.”

Though the restaurant’s website is active, there are no specific menu details yet. But Gatlin, working with Gatlin’s BBQ’s executive chef Michelle Wallace, intends the comfort food menu to honor his family’s roots and reflect a sense of community in one of Houston’s fastest-growing neighborhoods.

Greg Morago writes about food for the Houston Chronicle. Follow him on Facebook or Twitter. Send him news tips at Hear him on our BBQ State of Mind podcast to learn about Houston and Texas barbecue culture.

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