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Rosenberg (HOU) Round-up

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A tale of three Rosenberg restaurants:

Slippage,

Steady

and a new (as yet untested) discovery in Rosenberg to report.

Had not been to Guanajuato Mexican in a while. I have previously given it a good review but yesterday (and frankly, I have driven past and had bad vibes even before this) evidence of slippage, perhaps change of ownership or chef or both.

Unbussed tables galore. Yes, still a mix of Hispanic and other clientele (usually a good sign) but nothing worked for us yesterday. For a start menu with pictures on it!! This I certainly don't recall, and is something, like Gordon Ramsay, that immediately gets me in an unappetizing state of mind. And the salsa (while still served warm---hot [temp.] actually---as I recall previously) has little to nothing to recommend it. Certainly no heat from the ingredients and actually the hot temporature did nothing to enhance it. Also chips were unsalted and flavorless. I don't mind lack of salt if the salsa had some but there was none there either.

Appetizer of jalapenos and cream cheese. Not good. Mains of carne guisada and steak picado, mega poor. I seem to recall on earlier visits beans served in a crock. These were standard Taco-Bell refried variety. Guacamole tasted generic, almost supermarket variety. No good at all.

I cannot swear to it, but all signs indicate a change of ownership and possibly loss of a good chef in the process. Oh and awful pink/orange glasses (for beer) I neither recall nor wish to be offered to drink out of EV-HAH!

This seems like a downhill alert, big time. I remember the things I liked on the menu in vague terms and they seemed absent.

Guanajuato Mexican Restaurant
3907 Avenue H Rosenberg TX 77471 281.633.9042

Steady as she goes at Hunan Garden. This is the closest (closest being a relative term) halfway decent Chinese place to my home. A mere 35 miles. (Attention Chinese Restauranteurs Eagle Lake NEEDS YOU!!!!) This is Chinese American and doesn't seem to offer a Chinese menu. But on its own terms its food is very consistent and fresh. Also they turn around take-out orders faster than Southwest turns around a 737 at Hobby. I always want chili hot pepper sauce with my Chinese. Over the years elaborate promises of tubs of that in the order have broken my heart at Chinese places all around the country more times than the Minnesota Twins circa 1982. But at Hunan if they say you've got three chili sauces, somewhere in the order (you might have a bit of a hunt) there WILL BE THREE. Little things like that make all the difference. One thing I would love is if they (and all takeout places, Indian and Chinese and other) would revert to the Woody-Allen-Eating-Chinese-Food-In-Bed-With-Mariel-Hemingway paper containers. The plastic ones with clear lids spoil it for me. It's just not Chinese take-out in the classic sense, for me, in those.

There are not going to be pork intestines or salt & pepper tofu or even plain beansprouts. But on its own classic old-school American Chinese terms you won't be disappointed here. And don't pad your pick-up time with that customary 10 minutes later than they say, because they'll have it ready on time.

Hunan Garden
4601 Ave H Rosenberg TX 77471 281.342.7279

After the disastrous lunch at Guanajuato and after discovering Butler Books on 3rd street is "Closed for Renovations" driving around the block back to ALT 90 discovered the place we probably (based on the trade they were doing) SHOULD have lunched. Taqueria Leon is a kind of shack by the railroad tracks. But a neon sign for Menudo shone out like a beacon. It looks a bit like a BBQ joint so I think a lot of Mex BBQ is on the go within. The ad hoc parking lot was really full. And it exuded "People-Are-Happily-Eating-Within" vibes. It's on my list to check out soon. It seems little covered and may be new? Not sure. Certainly worth a checkout by the looks.

TAQUERIA LEON - Rosenberg, 77471 Phone: 281-342-6550

Thanks for reading.

bb

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  1. Thanks for the report, bb! I was just about to post on our great new Rosenberg find. We started to go to Guanajuato the other night, then decided to try a place I'd heard good things about, Buena Vista. It's right on Ave. H but closer to downtown Rosenberg than Guanajuato. As my friend had suggested would probably be the case, we were almost the only Anglos in there. When the chips and salsa came, my husband tasted the red salsa and said, "I think we've struck gold." Just the right amount of fire, and very flavorful.

    He had tacos al pastor, and I had a mixed grill for one (ha!), loaded with chicken, beef (it really was skirt steak, too), and the same pork that was in my husband's tacos. The tortillas were fresh, possibly hand made, and the pico was too. I can't eat avocados, so I gave him my guacamole, which unfortunately was beginning to fade a bit in color...still OK, though, he said. The prices were amazing; he had three tacos with rice and borracho beans for $6.95, and my mixed grill, also with rice and beans, (very flavorful borracho beans, BTW) was $9.95, and enough for two meals for me. The margaritas were good too. We had intended to stop at the paleteria across from Guanajato on the way home, but we had no room!

    I think this will become our new preferred place for the frequent Tex-Mex fixes we both require. However, we will now have to try Taqueria Leon too.

    Buena Vista
    1709 Avenue H, Rosenberg
    (281) 341-7013

    3 Replies
    1. re: zorra

      I used to work near Rosenberg in the '90s, but mainly ate at one Mexican restaurant, Blanca's I think, now closed. The number of Mexican, and other restauants on Ave. H,(Alt 90), and Texas 36 intrigued me for a relatively small town. My favorite restaurant is less than five miles away in Richmond, just across the Brazos River, called Galvan's Sausage House. Only about five tables withe BBQ cooked out back. I get brisket, fat on, juicy inside and black on the outside. Also wonderful beef susage and pretty fair ribs. If you live in the area give it a try, I make the drive from Houston every six weeks are so. I like it better than Luling and Thelmas, and it blows away Goode Co.

      1. re: James Cristinian

        Yes, I really like Galvan's. It is right on my way home from work, so I swing by there sometimes when I don't want to cook. I wish I had thought to suggest including it in the CH BBQ Smackdown.

      2. re: zorra

        Another place I liked was El Tejano on 3rd street but the last few times I have been there for chicharonnes (or whatever looks good to point to) no evidence of life (other than the door being open that is !) No people, and no food. They also sold tubs of red and green (not so much salsas as purees) that were to die for ~ hot hot, and good good. Unless they just keep strange hours. Very little English spoken there so hard to find out what's what. Anyone know?

        Buena Vista sounds like a plan to check out.

      3. Directions to Taqueria Leon

        Proceed from ALT 90 by turning north on 3rd street until just before crossing the RR tracks. Hang a right (east) there. It's on your immediate right. A humble-looking sprawling, well, shack basically. But many a shack has held hidden gems. I suspect this one might.

        1. Quick update:

          Leon is (no surprise) open only for lunch (and likely breakfast) but was closed up at 3pm.

          El Tejano appears to have come back to life with a sign that says "Open 700am for breakfast" Not sure if its killer salsas/purees are back on tap.

          The taqueria next to Hunan Palace is Mexican-"Salvadoran" Los Arcos I think.

          No actual foods sampled but a few details to add to the stuff above is all.

          bb