Each week, our My Top 5 series highlights Houston movers, shakers, entrepreneurs, and people shaping the character of the city. In turn, they share their favorite things to do around the city when they’re not hard at work. This week, we’re pleased to feature David Keck, master sommelier and founder of the Montrose honky-tonk Goodnight Charlie’s.
My Top 5 Things to Do in Houston
by David Keck
- Houston Theater District – Houston has truly world class music, dance, and theater, and I think we forget to enjoy them as much as we ought to (I’m certainly guilty of this). Houston Grand Opera brings in some of the greatest singers in the world; the Houston Ballet is full of amazing talent; the Houston Symphony programs beautifully; the Alley Theatre is one of the only remaining repertoire theater companies in the U.S., and that only scratches the surface.
- Hermann Park – Hermann Park is, I would argue, one of the most under-appreciated parks in Houston. It has beautiful open spaces, Miller Outdoor Theater, and is frequently quiet, especially during the week. It’s one of my favorite places to run, watch the birds, or just enjoy a relaxing walk.
- The Menil Collection – This is no secret, but this is one of the truly great modern art collections in the country and free to visit. I love walking through the collection to revisit some Magritte or sitting in the Rothko Chapel to breathe and ignore the world for a moment.
- Big Power Yoga Studio – In this industry, quiet time without a phone is crucial, as is exercise. I recently got back into yoga after a long departure for mental as well as physical health (core strength and stretching are very important when on our feet for so many hours). Big is a studio based on vinyasa flow, so not bikram hot, but in a heated room, so it’s perfect for sweating a bunch and getting limber before rehydrating and heading back to the bar!
- Double Trouble Caffeine and Cocktails – A small bar dedicated to fantastic coffee and awesome drinks. Opened by Robin Berwick and Robin Whalen in 2011, it is conveniently located on the light rail, so it’s a perfect spot for a drink before heading Downtown or to the stadium. Double Trouble has a chill tiki vibe, always great music, outstanding service, and does everything a neighborhood bar should do—there are very few places one can start with a great shot of espresso and finish with a perfectly balanced cocktail.
About David Keck
Master Sommelier David Keck discovered his love for wine while pursuing a career, and traveling the world, as an opera singer. He passed his Master Sommelier exam in 2016, making him the 149th American Master Sommelier and the 233rd in the world. Shortly after, he co-founded Goodnight Hospitality in Houston. His first project, the honky-tonk Goodnight Charlie’s, opened in Montrose at the end of 2017, and several more projects are in the works for 2018. Keck previously ran Camerata at Paulie’s wine bar for three years, which rose to national acclaim under his leadership. in 2016, Keck was named one of Food & Wine’s Sommeliers of the Year. He has a Master of Music Degree from Rice University, an undergraduate degree in English from Columbia University, and attended Juilliard for opera performance.