9 Family-Owned Houston Restaurants We Love

By Marcy de Luna  |  August 19, 2014
Credit: Caracol (courtesy of Amber Ambrose)

Feel right at home at these beloved family-owned restaurants. Several have been serving up tasty fare for generations.


  • Credit: Jonathan's The Rub/Facebook

    Jonathan's The Rub

    It’s a family affair at the Memorial-area restaurant: owner and executive chef Jonathan Levine is at the helm while his son serves as manager and his daughter oversees the waitstaff.

  • Niko Niko's

    Eleni Fetokakis and her husband began selling Greek comfort food in 1977, on the same property as the Montrose-area business sits today. The family involvement now extends to their son Dimitri, who runs the day-to-day operations at the Greek and American cafe's multiple locations.

  • Molina's Cantina

    Spanning three generations, current owners Roberto, Ricardo and Raul Molina III took over the Tex-Mex institution from their father, Raul Jr. The owner's grandparents, Raul and Mary Molina, founded Molina's Cantina in 1941. Tried and true, we can’t get enough of the tasty Tex-Mex fare and margaritas.

  • Adair Kitchen

    Brother-sister duo Nick Adair and Katie Barnhart own this Galleria spot, serving up casual American classics and healthy fare. Restaurants run in the family's blood; local chains Skeeter's Mesquite Grill and Los Tios are owned by the siblings' relatives.

  • The Breakfast Klub

    Marcus Davis heads up the family-owned, casual soul-food establishment in Midtown, where the signature dish of waffles and chicken wings is a must-try. The clan also owns Reggae Hut Cafe (a long-standing staple in Houston’s Third Ward) and Julia's Bistro.

  • Barbecue Inn

    Fried chicken, chicken-fried steak and barbecue plates are just some of the comfort you'll find at this Heights restaurant, owned and operated by the Skrehot family. The restaurant has been satisfying the palates of Houstonians for three generations.

  • El Tiempo/Laurenzo's Prime Rib

    Father and son Roland Laurenzo and Domenic Laurenzo co-own these restaurants (Domenic also serves as executive chef). The restaurant biz is a family tradition: Roland is the eldest son of Mama Ninfa, who founded the Original Ninfa's on Navigation (and is widely credited with popularizing the fajita in Houston).

  • Credit: Churrasco's Memorial City


    Michael Cordua (founder, chairman of the board of Cordua Restaurants) and son David Cordua (executive chef) run this Latin American restaurant's multiple locations. Americas also falls under the Cordua Restaurants umbrella.

  • Credit: Hugo's (courtesy of Paula Murphy)

    Hugo's/Backstreet Cafe/Caracol

    Hugo Oretega and wife Tracy own the successful trio of restaurants. Other family members involved are Hugo's brother Ruben (executive pastry chef), cousin (handyman) and cousin’s wife (who works in Hugo's kitchen).