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Feb 6, 2009 06:42 AM

Good, Cheap Eats Near Galleria/Houston?

My husband will be flying into Houston for a week-long business trip starting Sunday. He will be staying near the Galleria. We aren't at all familiar with this area and were hoping we could get some CH recs for good, fairly cheap eats in this area. (He has an expense account, but the company keeps a close watch on the tab.) Any type of food is open for suggestion, but he is particularly looking for Texas BBQ and Mexican food suggestions.

Thanks in advance for any help you can provide and please, it would help a lot of your suggestions were as close as possible to the area he will be staying in. He's going to be in classes all day M-F and really won't have time to travel out of the area.

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  1. Here is a good place to start your searching. Look by neighborhood, or zip code, fi you know it.

    1. I just moved to Houston a couple of months ago and am living in the Galleria area. Since BBQ is one of my very favorite things, I've begun my search for good Houston BBQ that I can patronize and enjoy and recommend to others. Thus far, the only recommendation I have is to avoid Goode Co, which I personally think is awful. There are BBQ joints in Houston that others seem to like, so I'm hopeful, but I don't believe any of them are in the Galleria area. Obviously since my knowledge is new and spotty, I could be wrong, but I honestly think it's likely that if your husband is really interested in trying some of that fabled Texas BBQ you've likely heard so much about, he's going to have to rent a car and take a relatively short (at least for us Texans) 3-hr road trip up to Central Texas. Although perhaps others might have a more practical solution.

      As far as cheap Mexican...again, just moved here so others might have better advice, but when I got here, I asked the gardeners at my apartment complex, the fellows at the gas station, my mechanic, and waiters at other restaurants (all Mexican-Americans) if there was any good, cheap Mexican in this area. Every single one of them said, with a big grin, Chacho's. Classy it ain't. But it is good, cheap Mexican, and kinda fun.

      There's cheap and good (not great) Thai at Thai Spice Buffet. Because it's a buffet, the dishes rotate, but I've had some really good things there. And the price is definitely right.

      And I like Cafe 121 for Americanized Chinese.

      One good thing about the Galleria is that many, many places deliver. Like Cafe 121. We like the steamed pork dumplings, the sesame beef, the honey walnut shrimp, the orange chicken.

      1 Reply
      1. re: Jaymes

        Chacho's is a place we enjoy and it is cheap plus you get a lot of food. Not BBQ, or Mexican, but there is a James Coney Island in the area, which is a Houston institution that you ought to try. Especially the chili, or a chili pie. El Tiempo, Pico's, and Excalantes are all very good, but not really cheap. Not really too over the top, but not cheap, but my standards. Just compare the menu at Chachos and El tiempo and you will see what I mean. And I 100% agree with Jaymes - No Goode Co. Best BBQ in town is nowhere near the Galleria.

      2. Hmm.. Well, the Galleria encompasses a large-ish area. Houston is known for being automobile required, and that probably is the most congested part of town.

        For barbecue, Luling City Market Bar-BQ on Richmond is decent and very close. For Mexican, you'll probably have to leave the area. Picos on Bellaire is somewhat close. El Tiempo on Washington also gets recommended frequently. Escalantes in Highland Village is closer than both of those to the Galleria proper, but it's not anywhere near as good as the other two I recommended.

        2 Replies
        1. re: Bulldozer

          There is an El Tiempo on Richmond that is closer than the Washington location, although I prefer the Washington location. The portions are large, so an appetizer and an entree should feed two. As for Luling City Market ,I would try to eat lunch if possible, the earlier the better, as quality diminishes as the day wears on. I also suggest Bayou City Seafood and also Magnolia Bar and Grill, both for seafood. Each of these are on Ricmmond. quite close to the Galleria.

          1. re: James Cristinian

            If your husband is going to be there for a week, he might also need some meals that are not as heavy as Mexican or BBQ. I recomment the Mint Cafe, on Sage, across the street from the Galleria. Excellent Mediteranean food.- kabobs, salads, falafel, etc. El Tiempo is great, too.

        2. I too often go Houston on business and stay near the Galleria. In fact, I will be there again next week. I have found that Pico's on Bellaire Blvd about a 5 minute drive from the Galleria. It is more Mexacan than Tex-Mex which I something that I like; margaritas are also very good. For BBQ, I am less familiar with what might be in the area, but my favorite is a new place called Pierson and Company on TC Jester north of the 610. I am guessing that it is maybe a 20 minute drive away. It is a small place but had good food and a very hospitable chef .

          3 Replies
          1. re: jcontario

            Yes! Another Pierson's fan! Best BBQ in town!

            1. re: danhole

              Danhole, my expeerience with Houston 'cue has been limited but I really enjoyed the food at Pierson's. If you go there, make sure that you allow for an extra 15 or 30 minutes to talk with the pit master, Clarence! He is quite proud of what he has set up and loves talking with the customers. Plan to go there for lunch on Monday.

              1. re: jcontario

                I live down the street from there, literally. Sorry but they are not open on sun or mon. They know me and my family by name, and I know all of them as well. If you ask they will let you sample just about anything. If you do a search on this board for Pierson's you will find out all kinds of tidbits about the place. Next time you go let them know you know Dani through Chowhound.

          2. Thanks everybody, for your great suggestions. I really appreciate it. It's this kind of stuff that makes CH such a pleasure and a wonderful resource And your suggestions should keep him plenty happy for the week that he'll be there.