Houston’s restaurant, which has been a staple on the Country Club Plaza since the mid-1980s, is closing on March 31.
In late December, owners Hillstone Restaurant Group confirmed that a lease extension was being negotiated for its Plaza location at 4640 Wornall Road.
On Wednesday the company said in a statement: “Houston’s in Kansas City will be closing its doors on March 31st. Houston’s opened on the Plaza in 1987. Having seen many changes to the Plaza over the years, we have been proud to serve Kansas City with good food and hospitality. Despite good faith efforts on both sides, an agreement to extend our tenancy at the Plaza could not be reached with the Lessor. Details surrounding infrastructure improvements that sought to temporarily close the restaurant proved to be insurmountable. While a future location is not certain, Hillstone will be on the lookout for sites with unique characteristics that would suit a new restaurant. Our sincere thanks to our guests to whom we have had the privilege of serving for many years.”
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The chain entered the market with an Overland Park location in late 1984, one of only 14 in the country. It quickly became a Johnson County favorite with its bare-brick, wood and brass surroundings, and a moderately priced menu that focused on such items as prime rib, burgers, barbecue ribs and what a Kansas City Star reviewer described as two superb desserts: warm apple walnut cobbler and warm five-nut brownie.
In mid-1986 it announced a Country Club Plaza location.
Country Club Plaza officials issued this statement: “We would be incredibly sad to see Houston’s leave the Country Club Plaza after more than three decades. We have done all we can to convince the management to stay and we hope to continue our dialogue with that end in mind. In the event they decide to close, we extend our sincerest thanks for all they have added to the Plaza over the years. We wish them well.”