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new york foodie goes to Houston

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  • Newyorkie Mar 2, 2005 11:52 PM
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Hi all,

I am an avid CH in NY. I am traveling to houston for 6 days starting March 15. I will be staying in the galleria area and was wondering what is good to try (I am adventurous) and the things that I absolutely should not leave houston without eating. I am going with a few people who are going to benefit greatly from all your suggestions.

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  1. What meals are we talking about here? All give a few to start off on but some pecifics might help a little more.

    Tampico Seafood on Airline. Get the whole grilled snapper. If you go fri or sat ask to sit upstairs. From galleria take loop 610 north to Airline and go south on airline and Tampico is about a mile on the right hand side of the road.

    Hong Kong Street Food on Bellaire fir great authentic chinese food. Its on Bellaire just inside beltway 8.

    Churrascos on Westheimer for south american inspired upscale food. The churrasco steak is wonderful.

    Otillia Mexican on long Point for great chiles en nogada, chillaquilles, enchiladas and many other things. From Loop 610 go north to I 10 and take I 10 west to Antoine and go north on Antoine to Lonp Point and go west on Long Point.
    El hildeguence on Long Point a little before you get to Otillias for cabrito. You get cabrito or the barbacoa cabrito and its served with a cabrito broth before the main dish is brought out. Also the tacos with ham, avacado, and cheese are very good.
    Alexander the Great Greek is not to far from the Galleria and they serve up some excellent greek dishes. The seafood really shines. Make sure to check out the special. Its usually whole fish simplt grilled. Also the chicken soup with orzo, lemon and finished off with egg is very good.
    Either Williams Smokehouse or Thelmas for true east texas bblack heritage barbeque. Thelmas can be a real pain at lunch unless you have plenty of time. And all babeque joints that are worth there salt have a tendency to run out of the stuff in the evening. If trying to catch at night I would call to see what they have. At Thelmas the shining star is the Briskett and the potato salad and the outrageously good stewed okra. These might be the best 2 sides of any bbq joint. And Thelmas is a joint. To get there is a little tricky but take loop 610 north to I 10 and go east just through downtown and then take 59 South and as soon as you are merging on 59 south exit Hamilton. This will take you right past minute maid ballpark. At Texas go left for about 1/2 mile to Dowling and go right. Take Dowling to Lamar (maybe 5 blocks) and go Left. Thelmas will be on corner of Lamar and Live Oak. The fried catfish here is also great!
    Williams has great ribs. Call them for directions.

    You can hit either Ninfas(only the one on Navigation) for original tex mex. Ninfas pretty much popularized the tex mex and specifically the fajita craze. Although you can get better food at a place run by Ninfas son or grandson these days at El tiempo plus eltiempo is much closer. It really depends on what you want I guess. These two places specialize in great fajitas (especially the chicken at el tiempoo and I never get chicken fajitas) and the carnitas.

    6 Replies
    1. re: John Scar

      I still love Brennans after all this time. Try the four course menu and tell the chefs that you alll want diff. things. Every time we've been it's been gorgeous.

      Also try Hugo's on Westheimer (near montrose) for really great Puebla food. The Chile en nogado is a must. stuffed poblano pepper with a walnut sauce and pomegranate seeds.

      Uptown sushi for great sushi options. It's in Uptwon Park not far from the Galleria.

      I didn't fancy T'afia.... so my suggestion is don't bother...

      Shade is pretty good for brunch.

      Is Aries still open? i really fancied that place but i ahven't been there in ages.

      Good luck and let us know what you try

      1. re: John Scar

        Agree with Scar,you can't go wrong w/ his recs.

        If I chose one place it would be Goode Co. BBQ. See my prior postings on what to order there, at the Kirby location.

        Next door is Goode's new honky tonk, which sounds like it'll be serving Texas music and quality nostalgia (like it never was) along with Texas food.

        His Mexican joint is great. His seafood joint offers Texas Gulf Coast seafood (flounder, oysters, I guess red snapper).

        1. re: John Scar

          One more place that is definitely a not miss is Dona Tere Tamales on Bellfort (I'm pretty sure its on Bellfort). The pork in green or red sauce is great as is the pollo mole tamale. Also try one of the sweet tamales. take Loop 610 south to 59 south and go to Bellfort exit about 5 miles. Go right on Bellfort and its on the left hand side of the road next to a Arrandas Bakery. These are the best tamales I have ever had.

          1. re: John Scar

            I believe they are next to the Arandas Bakery on Beechnut.

            1. re: dru

              OK. Then same directions but on Beechnut. Thanks for the help.

          2. re: John Scar

            Thelma's had a pretty bad fire at the beginning of February in the pit and kitchen area. I am not sure if she has reopened yet. I would advise calling beforehand to see if they are open.

          3. Having moved to Houston from NYC, here are my picks for things to have in Houston, foodwise, and I skip the usual advocation for things TexMex or BBQ:

            1. Hugo's on Westheimer and Mandell - for the enchiladas de huilacoche. Huilacoche is an unusual yet authentic Mexican ingredient; I know of no other restaurant in town that serves it.

            2. Vietnamese sandwiches (almost anywhere, but you'll find a high concentration of them at Milam in midtown) - fusion cuisine at its most natural. Get the BBQ pork with pate.

            3. Pavani's buffet - fantastic Indian food. Richmond near Greenbriar.

            4. Hong Kong Food Street (Bellaire near Beltway 8) - get the fried HK style oysters. You won't regret it.

            5. Chocolate Bar (West Alabama) - best truffles for miles around

            6. Fish n' More (Hillcroft near Harwin) - for Persian Ice cream!

            Good if you have a local foodie guide.

            1. Shade restaurant, in the Heights on 19th St. is a great place. So is Vietnam on 19th, all art on the wall is by famous artists and all are original, no prints here. The food is above average at both places and the prices will leave you feeling good about eating out.

              Bubba's Burgers on West Park will leave you wishing you lived in Houston.

              Steaks, well visit Vic and Anthony's or Mark's on Westheimer.

              Sushi is out of control in this city. Aka is my favorite.
              You will be happy to know that Houston has more restaurants than New York City, that’s right get a rope, you will need it because after you eat in this town, you will be fit to be tied when you realize you will be going home.