Houston Chronicle: Nancy’s Hustle owners announce new restaurant, Tiny Champions, in East Downtown

The team behind Nancy’s Hustle in East Downtown is set to bring a new concept to the neighborhood. General manager Sean Jensen, executive chef Jason Vaughan and pastry chef Julia Doran will open Tiny Champions at 2716 McKinney this fall. “We wanted to do something a bit more approachable and casual than Nancy’s,” Doran said. “We also...

The team behind Nancy’s Hustle in East Downtown is set to bring a new concept to the neighborhood.

General manager Sean Jensen, executive chef Jason Vaughan and pastry chef Julia Doran will open Tiny Champions at 2716 McKinney this fall.

“We wanted to do something a bit more approachable and casual than Nancy’s,” Doran said. “We also wanted something that would function well in the neighborhood, which has easy access to downtown and sporting events.”

While the menu is a work in progress, the focus will be naturally leavened pizza and fermented vegetable dishes, along with traditional and creative cocktails and organic wines.

“I make fermented dough at Nancy’s and wanted to bring over that perspective,” Doran said. “It yields a wonderful, complex flavor. Although it’s subtle,when you’re talking about pizza, everything counts.”

On the lighter side, Tiny Champions will serve a variety of fermented vegetable dishes. “Probiotic foods are healthy and release complexities of flavor. We’d like to see where this can take us in terms of food and taste,” Doran said.

The new project offers a fun new challenge for the owners and staff, Doran said. “We can explore and push ourselves creatively. It will be a well-rounded meal experience.”

Nancy’s Hustle opened at 2704 Polk in 2017, and has landed on Alison Cook’s Top 100 list each year since its launch, ranking as No. 13 in 2019. It has also received national praise. In 2018, Thrillist named it one of the 13 Best New Restaurants and Esquire ranked it as one of the Best New Restaurants in America.

marcy.deluna@chron.com

 

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