“Spaghetti Monster” illustration by Erin Davis
Spaghetti Warehouse resides in the heart of downtown, serving patrons for over 40 years now. Not only is it known for it’s delightful spaghetti, but there is something spooky about the place as well, and I determined to figure out what exactly that was.
I went midday on Saturday hoping to find the place more chill, and the waiters less busy. Much to my surprise, the place was packed, but the rowdiness of the restaurant seemed to add to the spookiness.
The entire restaurant was decked out for Halloween, white bed sheets imitating flowy ghosts were floating from the ceiling, skeleton scarecrows sat in the waiting area. The main floor was covered in patrons and bowls and bowls of spaghetti.
Server Karla Gonzalez is an English literature junior at University of Houston, and she gave me a little background to the apparent hauntings.
“The original story is that back when this was a produce warehouse, the owner fell down the elevator shaft and died,” Gonzalez said. “His wife saw him come home and then couldn’t find him at home. She went to look for him and found out he was dead. Exactly one year later she died of a broken heart.”
The wife apparently haunts the building to this day. Gonzalez continues to explain how there are many other things that haunt the place.
“The stairs are from a castle in Europe, so some of the things may have spirits attached to it,” Gonzalez said. “There is a cabinet upstairs that was used as an urn to keep ashes in back in the plantation days. The story is that a little girl locked herself in it and suffocated.”
Gonzalez said that Spaghetti Warehouse staff used to keep salt and pepper shakers in that cabinet, but when they would arrive in the morning they would be thrown out all over the floor.
“Some of the most popular occurrences are people being tripped and hearing their names called, especially in the bar and the ladies’ bathrooms,” Gonzalez said. “I’ve personally had my name called as well. We were closed and there were only two other people in the building and it was neither of them calling my name.”
Another waiter, Ignacio, has worked at the Spaghetti Warehouse for over twenty five years, and when asked if the place was haunted, he got goosebumps all over his arms.
Manager Monica Hernandez was creeped out when she came back to work after being on pregnancy leave. She was closing the restaurant and heard running up the stairs even though the place was empty. From then on out, she refused to close alone.
Gonzalez said that when the lights are off, she doesn’t go upstairs or to the basement. And she is not the only one—waiter Anthony Turner made it clear that he is creeped out upstairs too.
“I’ll say this: when I go upstairs I always get bad vibes,” Turner said. “They say a lot of stuff went down. I believe no one is meant to be up there by themselves. Even the back hallways and the wine cellars—I never go there by myself.”
He went on to tell me about an instance when he had to go downstairs to get some applesauce because they ran out of it on the floor, and he’s never hurried so fast in his life. He refuses to go upstairs or to the wine cellar because of the creepy feelings he gets.
I took a look upstairs and there were indeed creepy vibes. I did not personally experience anything paranormal, but that could have been due to the fact that I was there midday.
All in all, I enjoyed my chicken parmigiana, and enjoyed shining some light on one of the most historically haunted buildings downtown.
The restaurant does events throughout the year that invite people to come spend the night and experience first-hand these creepy spirits. You can count me out, but if you’re interested check the events out at the Houston Historical Tours website, on the “Haunted Tours” page.