New Restaurant Opening: Ostia in Montrose

New Restaurant Opening: Ostia in Montrose

On Sunday we decided to check out Ostia, a new Montrose restaurant that’s been getting a lot of buzz even though it’s only been open for less than a week.

Chef/Owner Travis McShane is a Houston native that has worked in restaurants in San Francisco, Nashville, Atlanta, and NYC as executive and corporate chef for the “godfather of American cuisine” Chef Jonathan Waxman. McShane returns to his hometown to open Ostia, a restaurant that embodies the food, atmosphere, and philosophies that most define him.

As soon as we walked up to the restaurant we were digging the atmosphere and vibes. The restaurant’s design reminded us of something we’d see in L.A., especially out on the patio where we were seated for dinner. Our waitress was super friendly and helpful, albeit she was forthcoming in admitting she hadn’t herself eaten everything on the menu (which is understandable since the restaurant just opened a few days ago), so she was cautious in recommending stuff she hadn’t tried (which I respected).

Ostia’s menu features New American dishes with Italian and Mediterranean influences. To start the meal we went with the duck liver pate and Caesar salad. Both were bomb. The duck pate was prepared with sautéed onions and red peppers, which helped cut through and balance its richness. And as basic as it might sound, the Caesar salad, prepared with shaved pecorino and white anchovies, was actually one of my favorite dishes of the night. Christina and I both had a feeling that if this “casually-bourgie” restaurant was going to serve something as ubiquitous as Caesar salad then it was probably going to be well-executed, and indeed it was.  

Our main course consisted of the Rigatoni with guanciale, sweet corn, crispy potatoes, and the roasted half chicken that the restaurant is kind of known for. I was really digging Rigatoni. The pasta was perfectly al dente (not too hard, not too soft). Usually when we get guanciale from the grocery store it comes as small diced pieces, but the guanciale in this pasta were heartier chunks. What was also interesting to me was that the guanciale actually tasted like Filipino longanisa (sweet sausage), so me being Filipino you know I couldn’t be mad at that.

The crispy potatoes were like thick cut fries with an extra crispy exterior. If thick fries or quality fried potatoes are your jam, definitely get the crispy potatoes.

The roasted chicken was solid. I think Christina liked it more than me and I can see why people love it. It was perfectly cooked, with crisp skin on the outside while retaining the meat’s moisture on the inside. And the lemon and herb jus added a nice tanginess. But if I’m being honest it didn’t get me as excited as, say for example, this gochujang roasted chicken recipe that Christina made at home not too long ago. But if you go and you generally like roast chicken it’s definitely worth ordering. Order it, and let me know what you think.

All in all we loved our dinner, and we can’t wait to get back to try the other things on the menu that we couldn’t get to our first time there.



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