Pappas Restaurants is a privately owned restaurant group with its headquarters in Houston, Texas. The founders are Greek-American brothers Pete and Jim Pappas. The first restaurant was The Brisket House in Houston. It opened in 1967. In 1996 its name was changed to Pappas Bar-B-Q. Since then the Pappas family has opened 8 unique restaurants with more than 80 locations in Texas, Colorado, Arizona, Illinois, Ohio, New Mexico, Georgia, and Alabama. In the December 2007 issue of Texas Monthly, Pappas Bros. Steakhouse was named the best steakhouse in Texas.
The family-owned Pappas Restaurants, Inc., chain operates in more than 80 locations in Houston, Dallas, Cincinnati, Austin, San Antonio, Beaumont, Atlanta, Chicago, Denver, Albuquerque, and Phoenix. The restaurants encompass a variety of concepts, including Pappas Bros. Steakhouse, Pappadeaux Seafood Kitchen, Pappas Seafood House, Pappasito's Cantina, Pappas Bar-B-Q, Pappas Burger, and Yia Yia Marys. The company is run by brothers Christopher and Harris Pappas, who also serve as the executive team at Luby's, Inc., a cafeteria chain in several states.
The origins of the family-operated Pappas Restaurants dates back several generations, beginning with H.D. Pappas, who emigrated from Greece in 1897 and opened restaurants in Arkansas, Tennessee, and Texas. In 1945, H.D. Pappas's sons, Pete and Jim, moved to Houston where they obtained a franchise to sell beer coolers in South Texas. The brothers eventually built the venture into a successful restaurant supply business, selling chairs, booths, refrigerators, and other kitchen equipment. The business was cyclical, however, and the brothers soon decided to try the restaurant field in 1967 with the opening of Dot Coffee Shop off of I-45 South just inside the 610 loop of Houston. In 1970, Jim Pappas's son Harris joined the family business, soon followed by his other sons, Christopher and Greg.
After Jim Pappas's death in 1982, his sons aggressively expanded the business, opening more seafood restaurants, as well as profitable Mexican and Cajun restaurants. The Pappas brothers grew the business on a tireless attention to detail, value, and service. They also made their mark by offering large portions at moderate prices at restaurants with highly visible locations. What the restaurants tended to lose in higher food costs, they made up for with volume and considerable customer turnover. The company had a competitive edge on publicly owned restaurant chains, which were under pressure to build new units in a hurry and to improve their bottom lines from one quarter to the next. Unlike these competitors, the Pappas business could take its time in building a high quality restaurant, devoting as much labor to the project as was required.
In 1989, after concentrating their business in Houston with more than 25 Pappas dining spots, the family began expanding into Dallas and Austin. In 1992, the business broke into the San Antonio market with one of its Pappasito's Cantina Mexican food eateries. The company planned to open another Pappasito's and the Pappas' Cajun seafood concept, Pappadeux Seafood Kitchen, in San Antonio by the fall of 1993. Each of these restaurants included 10,000 to 12,000 square feet (1,100 m2) of space, was designed by the Pappas' architectural staff, and was built by the company's in-house construction crew.
The company was shaken when Greg Pappas died in a car accident on a Houston highway. With his death in February 1995, the company lost an important member of its executive team as well as its main architect.
In 1996, the company's gamble on a new concept - an upscale steakhouse with a cigar room, impressive wine cellar, and playful art -raised the business to new heights. The company opened its first Pappas Bros. Steakhouse on the spot of the Strawberry Patch American bistro, an eatery they had opened in 1976 and closed in 1993. The steakhouse represented a departure from the company's other causal dining restaurants and poised it for future growth. Another Pappas Steakhouse was opened in 1998, located in the restaurant row that had developed along Northwest Highway in Dallas. The company took more than a year to build this restaurant. With a wine list of 1,600 selections, a cigar room, and other amenities, the restaurant proved a success in catering to business executives and those with a taste for fine food. At the same time, the company continued to expand its family empire with the opening of new restaurants in Chicago and Atlanta.
- Pappadeaux Seafood Kitchen 
- Pappasito’s Cantina 
- Pappas Seafood House 
- Pappas Bros. Steakhouse 
- Pappas Bar-B-Q 
- Yia Yia Mary’s 
- Pappas Burger 
- Pappas Grill & Steakhouse 
- Dot Coffee Shop