I was in Houston over the w/e for a family get together. We flew to Houston on Thursday & had to drive to Beaumont that afternoon for a meeting. We are from Austin & had planned to compare the new Houston Uchi with Austin Uchi & Uchiko. Our plans changed due to flight delays , traffic, etc. After driving back to Houston from Beaumont at 9pm, we were too tired to face Uchi. We ended up eating at our hotel, JW Marriott across from the Galleria, which was the usual hotel experience. We got the "comfort" burger, but opted for cheese & macaroni rather than fries which was a huge mistake. Googy, grainy with sun dried tomatoes added. But, the drinks were basic & good once we requested doubles!
Friday we had late lunch reservations at DaMarco's. The room was cozy with about 5 other tables occupied. I must clarify that we lived in NOLA for years & look forward to leisurely lunches. When we arrived, we ordered cocktails to begin. After reviewing the menu & hearing the specials, we ordered apps & entrees. The apps arrived almost immediately while we were only half way thru our cocktails. Since our apps were cold, we finished our cocktails & then ordered a bottle of wine before starting. I ordered a salad on the menu, burrata di puglia with tomatoes. I was expecting a creamy burrata with in season tomatoes. Boy, was I disappointed. The salad plate was frig cold. The salad had 3 layers, arugula, then pears shaped roasted tomatoes topped with the burrata. All 3 layers were extremely cold. The tomatoes had no taste at all & the burrata was like a gel, no creaminess at all. I took a couple of bites & set it aside. When the waiter noticed it sitting there, he asked if everything was OK. I said, I didn't care for it as everything was so cold it had no flavor. He stated, "it's supposed to be cold" but he took it away & deducted it from the bill.
My partner had a special salad with melon (cantaloupe), hearts of palm, arugula & a couple of other things that I can't remember. The melon was incredible, so sweet...it was crying out for prosciutto. The hearts of palm were kind of crunchy almost like a jicama.
For my entree, I had the risotto special with truffles which was wonderful. The rice was perfect, the truffles so earthly. My partner got the fish special which was a bass with the best prawn I think I have ever had. Both dishes were very successful. My mouth was still wanting the melon with proscuitto, so I ordered that & my partner had an assortment of gelati which were fine. We had expresso before leaving.
Saturday, we were doing errands getting ready for the family get together that night. We decided to duck into a restaurant on the spur of the moment & in a desire to let the heavy winds & rains pass. We stopped at Giucomo's cibo e vino on Westheimer. We started with gambrel al diavolo which was spicy, yummy. The other dish we started with was the ratatouille marti, egg poached in ratatouille. The ratatouille was so good with so much flavor. My only quibble was the egg had been fried, not poached. Luckily, the yoke was still runny, but it had the brown crust on the outside of the white that often comes with a fried egg. Regardless, we enjoyed the dish very much. We split an entree of tagliatelle all a bolognese. The home made pasta was very good as was the sauce. All in all, a nice afternoon meal.
For brunch on Sunday, we ate at Ouisies Table. We started with a bloody mary which tasted kind of watery. For starters, we had the crispy fried gulf oysters and crispy gulf crab cakes with corn relish. Both were really good. The oysters were crisp, not greasy at all. The crab cakes were full of crab and the corn relish was delish. We then split the heart healthy salmon which was a bit overcooked, Ok dish, nothing special. I ordered 1 of their speciality cocktails with vodka, champagne & chambord which was called The Vampire's Kiss. It tasted of nothing except that chambord & was undrinkable. I switched to wine. We finished with expresso & a pasty filled with fruit topped with ice cream. Just ok.
Looking forward to exploring Chinatown area next trip. Thanks to all that answered my questions about Uchi. Will try to compare the 2 next time we are in town.