Downtown Restaurant & Bar

The Food

We believe dishes and drinks that bring you back again and again are the true test of a neighborhood restaurant, a gathering place, a tavern. We’re serving simple, elegant dishes from our wood-burning grill with the same philosophies on sourcing, technique, service and attention to detail as our sister restaurants.

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The Wine

Whether you want a casual patio bottle or a sought-after allocated wine, we’ve got you. Our list is extensive and approachable with small producers alongside tried and true well-known producers, varietals and regions. It can be hard to have something for everyone, but this time, we nailed it.

The Cocktails

We’ve got great spirits on the bar, and we’re not holding back on our allocated whiskeys (bourbon and scotch alike). As for the cocktails, we’ve got a few familiar classics, dialed up a bit, and some very fun originals that push boundaries.

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The Team

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Tim Reading

Executive Chef

Tim Reading grew up in a small town near Boston and discovered his passion for cooking through his high school’s culinary program. During high school, he worked as a dishwasher at a local country club, where he eventually became a line cook. Tim attended the Culinary Institute of America in Hyde Park, NY, and while he was in school, completed an internship at a two-Michelin-starred restaurant Gourmet Restaurant Lerbach in Bergisch Gladbach, Germany.

Tim returned to Boston and worked under Michael Schlow at his four restaurants—Via Matta, Doretta, Tico and Alta Strada—and progressed from line cook to chef de cuisine within the next five years. He moved to Houston in 2018 looking for a new culinary challenge, which he found as executive chef of Hugo Ortega’s Caracol. In early 2022, Tim joined Underbelly Hospitality as executive chef of GJ Tavern.

Tim is the King of carpool karaoke! Follow him on the Insta to get your daily dose of feel good.

Favorite bite in HOU: Tacomadre food truck

Favorite spot for a shifty: Angel’s Share


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Lynsey Carrier

General Manager

The youngest of four, Lynsey played D1 soccer to help pay for her Bachelor of Science in biology. Starting off her hospitality career at Pappas, she ended up moving to NYC to experience the industry there. COVID brought her back to HOU and we are not mad about it!

Avid reader. Kitten rescuing champion. Generally awesome human.

Favorite spot for a shifty: Pistolero’s


The Location

GJ Tavern is located in Downtown Houston at 737 Preston on the first floor of Market Square Tower. Valet parking is complimentary at Market Square Tower.