Hop hope: Raise your steins. The long-brewing King’s Bierhaus, 828 W. FM 646 in League City, has reached a major milestone and is planning, weather permitting, to open in April.

Crews have been attempting to pour concrete for a parking lot, but the wet weather has dampened those efforts, said Chung Hui, general manager of the German-cuisine restaurant and beer garden concept.

The restaurant is basically ready, but the parking lot has to be built before patrons can begin enjoying the venue, Hui said.

King’s Bierhaus marked a major milestone in February when the restaurant and outdoor area passed fire sprinkler inspections, reports James Armentor, Galveston office manager of Kauffman Co. Fire & Life Safety, which was the contractor on the fire sprinkler project.

“We are really excited to be the fire sprinkler contractor on this project and proud to get another success under our belt,” Armentor said.

Hui, as of press time, had not officially announced an opening date.

King’s Bierhaus generated big buzz when it announced in January 2017 plans to open a League City venue. But there were delays after Hurricane Harvey, which struck in August that year, and also because the company decided to expand mid-construction with an outdoor beer garden, which required it to buy some adjacent property for an extra parking lot and secure new permits.

When it’s built out, King’s Bierhaus will feature a 300-seat outdoor beer garden and large indoor dining room with communal tables.

Greek tragedy: The sudden closure in early March of Olympia Grill in League City shocked area residents who long awaited the restaurant, which opened in November.

Owners Larry and Tikie Kriticos couldn’t be reached for comment about plans for a return, but those in the know say the brothers are weighing their options.

A sign at the restaurant, 2535 Interstate 45 in Pinnacle Park, stated the closure was “due to kitchen maintenance.”

But others have speculated the closure was related to freeway construction.

Manish Maheshwari, who, with business partners, owns franchises Little Bella Mia and Coco Crepes, Waffles & Coffee in Pinnacle Park, said in a March 6 social media posting that I-45 construction between FM 518 and FM 517 “is not very kind, especially to new restaurants. Straw that broke the camel’s back is 646 bridge demolition.”

Texas Department of Transportation crews March 1 began work on the FM 646 overpass spanning I-45 as the first step in expanding the highway in that area.

With the demolition of the FM 646 bridge, drivers will have to use either FM 517 or state Highway 96 as alternative routes.

The work is part of a $120 million project to widen the interstate between FM 517 and FM 518. The plan to widen I-45 through Galveston County is divided into several different phases, officials said.

Stay tuned.

Ciao time: An Italian cuisine concept that has fared well after opening in La Porte two years ago is planning a League City restaurant.

Tony Metaliaj and family plan to open Aroma’s Italian Grill in the site formerly occupied by fried chicken purveyor KFC at FM 518 and I-45.

Metaliaj is waiting for the landlord to make necessary improvements to the property and expects to open in about three months, he said. The restaurant will offer authentic Italian food made on the premises but at a fast pace, said Metaliaj, whose family is originally from New York.

Popular menu items include lasagna and chicken Parmigiana, to name a few.

Room service: A new hotel is checking into League City. A hotelier who has plans to build a Holiday Inn Express at the prime intersection of state Highway 96 and I-45 has acquired a little more than 3 acres from RIG Member LLC, reports James Brockway of Brockway Commercial, who represented the seller.

The tract was sold out of a 19-acre tract owned by RIG Member LLC with plans for development of the 16 remaining acres by Western Spherical Developers, Brockway said.

Western Spherical Developers is in a pre-development agreement with the city to transform Chester L. Davis Sportsplex, 1251 state Highway 96, into an entertainment hub that will be home to a convention center, amphitheater, arenas for professional sports, hotels, restaurants and more in what’s being called Epicenter League City. The proposed Holiday Inn Express is on private land, not city-owned land. The 19 acres Western Spherical Development and the hotelier own is on the north side of state Highway 96 and the land will ultimately be part of the larger Epicenter footprint, said Linda Merritt, spokeswoman for $450 million Epicenter League City development.

Construction of the Holiday Inn Express will jumpstart opportunities for businesses and new development in the area, Brockway said. Stay tuned.

Supply side: A large auto parts supplier has steered into League City.

Houston-based XL Parts has leased 7,500 square feet in Hometown Business Center, 951 E. FM 646, for offices and product distribution.

XL Parts is a fast-growing direct-to-the-installer automotive parts supplier in the Houston, Dallas/Fort Worth, Oklahoma City and Baton Rouge areas. The company carries 120,000 different part numbers covering 175 product lines from dozens of manufacturers, according to its website.

James Brockway and Canon Doyle of Brockway Commercial worked alongside Dave Peterson with NAI Robert Lynn in finding XL Parts the League City office.

 Laura Elder: 409-683-5248; laura.elder@galvnews.com

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