Adrian Hembree (Owner/Operator)
“One thing I know about food is that it brings people together. At Grazia, our grace extends beyond our kitchen and even our doors. We are local folks just like the people we proudly serve in our restaurants and our neighborhoods.” Adrian Hembree, owner.
Adrian began his career in the food service industry as a dishwasher in a small Italian restaurant in Brenham, Texas, while attending college. He worked his way up the ladder to one of the leaders in the kitchen. Toward the end of college, he began working in food service sales. He worked his way up from Territory Manager, to Trainer, to ultimately the Vice President of Sales for an Italian Food distributor.
He took his sales role beyond just selling product to restaurants and began helping his customers as if it were his own restaurant. From menu designing/writing, employee hiring/training, buying, you name it…he worked alongside many owners, to help them create success. He became tired of corporate America, and wanted something for himself; this is where his entrepreneurial spirit brought him to his next stage in life.
He quit his VP job, sold his house, and moved his wife and daughter in with his in-laws. They saved for a year to buy and build their first franchise. For the next ten years, he worked in developing and branding restaurants. He had many trials and tribulations that not only did he learn from, but grew his faith in God stronger than what it was before.
Today, Grazia Italian Kitchen has two locations in Pearland and Clear Lake, with a third location in Katy opening in the spring of 2018. Grazia is a proud supporter of local schools, athletic programs, community organizations, law enforcement and military and veteran organizations.
In 2016, Grazia won the Lone Star Entrée Grand Champion, the People’s Choice Reserve Grand Champion and the Rookie Award at the Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo’s Roundup and Best Bites Competition for their smoked beef short rib served over pancetta risotto, topped with a cilantro molasses glaze.
Adrian’s motto is Grazia = Grace. Grace is something we all need every day in our lives.