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Jan 14, 2010 12:46 PM

Best dish in Houston 2009....... Ready, set, go!

What was the best dish you had this year in Houston. Also taking votes for best restaurants!

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  1. No restrictions on price range? Mine are across the board but mostly gravitate towards lower end.

    Beef tongue, pate, seafood soup, and last but certainly not least, pork belly at Feast. Also impressed by their delicate and fluffy mashed potatoes. My girlfriend came up with the best description for them: they're like bliss on a plate.

    Brisket, ribs and sausage at Boogie's. For now, the trailer is located on West Airport near Gessner. Not hard to find, just keep your eyes/nose on the lookout for smoke. They are planning on moving into their retail space soon., which is a good move that would hopefully bring them more business Make sure you ask for dry ribs.

    Pho from Pho Binh's trailer or Pho One. Eating at Pho Binh is an experience in itself as you'll be crammed into a small mobile home. The broth at Pho Binh is the best of the dark, greasier variant and you'll walk out of there smelling like pho. I haven't seen broth lighter than Pho One's anywhere in Houston. Some may argue that Pho One's broth is weak, while to me, the simplicity of their crystal clear broth is something to behold. Every part of the pho gets a chance to shine and it's all about the subtleties.

    And I know I could get thrown into the fire for this: Sonoran Hot Dog at James Coney Island

    Couple more good contenders but I haven't had an opportunity to thoroughly evaluate them yet. But it is 2010 so we'll see how they do.
    Filipino breakfast at Pinoy Fast Food - Only been once so far but I'd like to wade through more of their menu
    A taco truck that serves vegetarian Indian street foods with lots of heat
    Some higher end places: Tesar's, Voice, Reef

    9 Replies
    1. re: air

      FYI before anyone wastes a trip out there, Pinoy Fast Food is closed until February. Owners are on vacation. For reference they're located in the "international food court" towards the southernmost portion of the the Viet Hoa shopping complex, SW corner of Beechnut and Beltway 8. I ended up going to Tony's instead, where it turns out they have also added Filipino breakfasts to their menu, wonderful.

      1. re: air

        I have a short memory (yeah, go ahead and laugh but you'll get there one day too) but I'd say it was the crab quesadillas at El Tiempo. I didn't have them until a few days before the new years but it was still 2009 :-) So simple yet so sublime!! I'll have them many more times in 2010.

        1. re: texasredtop

          Agreed! I tried the quesadillas based on recs here and they were fabulous! I also love the crab enchilada (just one, not two -- the sauce is too rich!).

          1. re: mjust

            When I asked the guy how many quesadillas were in the order and he said one, I thought one quesadilla for $18, are you kidding me? But I only ate half and nuked the next quarter the next night, the final quarter the night after that and it was excellent every single time. I always bring home leftovers but NEVER eat them. I don't like nuked food but these were the exception.

            1. re: texasredtop

              I know, it is a huge portion! Definitely enough for more than one meal or more than one person. I didn't take any home though -- was there with 7 others and once they heard me raving I had lots of help. I like reheating quesadillas in the oven because it helps them crisp up more (but it is definitely not efficient to heat up the oven just for that).

              1. re: mjust

                I was totally surprised that it came out so good from the microwave. I assumed the crab would be a mess but it's in such big lumps that it was perfect. Even the tortillas came out perfect. I just put them on a plate and covered with a paper towel and I was amazed at the outcome. It was almost as good as the dish was when I ate it the first time.

                1. re: texasredtop

                  Good to know -- I will keep that in mind for the future! Thanks!

                  1. re: texasredtop

                    mjust and texasredtop, try a toaster oven. It's great for reheating almost all leftovers. One of the few things I use my microwave for is rice/and or beans.

          2. re: air

            One of the best dishes I had in 2009 was also from Feast -- Duck Blood Sausage Cake with greens and potato mash. The meat component was loose, not actually packed into a cake, and unbelievably flavorful. With the slightly vinegary greens and the creamy potato -- just delicious. And not something you can get just anywhere!

          3. The best dish I had last year was the Jarret de Veau, a veal osso buco, at Le Mistral. Served with a parmesan ricotta and mushrooms. Fantastic food! Can't afford to go there but maybe once a year, but I think about that dish a lot.

            Another dish I crave is the Thai dumplings at Thai Lanna. I could just eat those without any entrees, although those are very good too! Oh, and just about any of the small plates at Catalan!

            1. Great thread, Dani.

              My best dish in Houston this last year was the Chiles en Nogada at Hugo's.

              Sublime. And I don't use that word lightly.

              2 Replies
              1. re: Jaymes

                Jaymes, not my thread. I will start one soon, but not limited to last year.

                1. re: danhole

                  Ah, I see that now.


                  Great thread, diego90per!

              2. The huaraches at Aztec Huarache in Stafford. Specifically the one with beans, eggs, red sauce, green sauce, avacado and mexican cheese.
                The smokey briskett in a chipoltle masala sauce at Himalaya.