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Texas food trail: Houston -- try something new!


jscarbor
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Yeah..I've had those cucumber prok ones too. I agree they are good. I think the only difference bewteen the Dan Dan and the Szechuan is that the first one uses sesame paste and the other peanut paste...or is it the other way round.

Might be the other way? Or not?

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  • 2 weeks later...

There is this little vietnamese joint at Mcgowen and Fannin in midtown (houston) that serves a killer duck noodle soup. That is all I have had at this place and it is very good. Deep rich broth, fried shallots and duck confit. $5 or so.

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A friend of mine speaks very highly of Van Loc on Milam across the street from Mai's and their fried Tofu with roasted garlic and lemon pepper dipping sauce. So, we met there today and he is quiet right. That is one of the best tofu I've had. It's cubed and as far as I can tell breaded with rice flour and deep fried. The soft sweet garlic works great with it. Their Vietnamese spring rolls and summer rolls were great too.

E. Nassar
Houston, TX

My Blog
contact: enassar(AT)gmail(DOT)com

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A friend of mine speaks very highly of Van Loc on Milam across the street from Mai's and their fried Tofu with roasted garlic and lemon pepper dipping sauce. So, we met there today and he is quiet right. That is one of the best tofu I've had. It's cubed and as far as I can tell breaded with rice flour and deep fried. The soft sweet garlic works great with it. Their Vietnamese spring rolls and summer rolls were great too.

BTW, I also took some Pho to go that day for my son and it is almost inedible because the broth was so salty. We only ate the noodles and meat. I'd avoid that. Go figure...

E. Nassar
Houston, TX

My Blog
contact: enassar(AT)gmail(DOT)com

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On the advice of Jay Francis I went to Komart at Gessner and katy freeway for a bowl of bibmabap(I never remember the spelling on the dish), essentially its a rice dish. Anyway, the dish was very good especially the bottom part of the bowl that gets nice and crunchy as it cooks in the hot bowl. The dish that really excelled though was the plate of spicy squid. The squid were great and the mushrooms in the dish was delicious. The place we tried was the 3rd stall from the left.

Edited by jscarbor (log)
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  • 2 months later...

Awhile back my family and some friends went to Airirang for korean bbq. It was very good chow with about 5-6 side dishes. The regular meat was my favorite and the seafood pancake was very good. The only dissapointment was the squid, it was tough to cook, I tried cooking it for 1 minute, then 2, then 10 and all turned out more rubbery than we would have liked. The squid dish at Ko MArt was much better.

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  • 2 weeks later...

I made it over to Bob's Steaks and Chops this past saturday. I'm normally not a go out for steak kind of guy but I couldn't think of anywhere else that my company might want to go. The food was good, but why would I pay for a $40 steak when I can get as good as beef at HEB for $20 and drink a great $75 wine that would be well into triple digits at a restaurant. Anyway, it was good but unless someone else WANTS to go and is paying then I can't see myself there anytime soon.

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  • 3 weeks later...

i can't believe I have never been to Khyber on Richmond until today? Short story short, I now know why! What a complete waste of calories and $15 for the buffet. Sure the buffet is not the best of what a restaurant has to offer but really? This was not very good at all. The one highlight was the cocunut almond rice pudding. t would have been a great way to calm the spice of the food but there wasn't any spice. Himalay doesn't have a buffet but the $8 lunch plate has more than enough food and the quality is so much better.

Edited by jscarbor (log)
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Vietnam Restaurant in the Heights on 19th is decent enough vietnamese food. The bu lac luc(grilled beef dish) is very good. Tender tasty chunks of beef in a light coating of brown sauce and the lime pepper dipping sauce on the side. I had the black pepper chicken which was merely fried chunks of chicken over onions and garlice with the same lime/pepper dipping sauce. I really wasn't a fan of the dish. On another visit someone told me to get the black pepper shrimp which is the same as the chicken dish only shrimp of course and it was pretty good. Go figure?

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  • 2 months later...

I hit Cafe Pita last week for Bosnian food. I split the HUGE pita with cheese. Its a pastry filled with beef, spinach, potatoes or cheese and served with a side of what seemed to be a sour cream cheese? The pastry was excellent. Also split the beef sandwich which was served with a bun that almost resembled a large english muffin. It was pretty good, I got the stuffed kind.

Its run by some very nice folks that seem very interested in pleasing the customer. Located on westheimer just west of beltway 8.

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Check out the newly opened wine bar - Sovino across from Dolce Vita on Westheimer

Extensive wine list (you can also buy bottles at a discount), excellent food, upscale ambiance, good service.

I had a fresh arugula and baby lettuce salad with tangy goat cheese, pistachios, and a bright vinaigrette. Excellent. The duck cognac pate was tasty, two spicy mustards , and crunchy cornichons. The beef tenderloin was TENDER, easily cut with a knife (almost no pressure applied), a high quality piece of meat.

However, the bread is not great - stale french baguette. Maybe they'll improve on it.

Second beware, potentially long food waits as Sovino is working out the kinks in their first month. The steak entree took more than an hour to exit the kitchen. But in the meantime we were treated to a glass of wine to compensate and multiple apologies.

Ambience is glitzy wine bar: antique persian rugs on the walls, boughs of flowers, wood bar, and a private dining area. Wine is served in Riedel stemware. Unfortunately, with no sound paneling I'm not sure what the noise level will be when packed, but I'm going to go back and find out.

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I hit Cafe Pita last week for Bosnian food. I split the HUGE pita with cheese. Its a pastry filled with beef, spinach, potatoes or cheese and served with a side of what seemed to be a sour cream cheese? The pastry was excellent. Also split the beef sandwich which was served with a bun that almost resembled a large english muffin. It was pretty good, I got the stuffed kind.

Its run by some very nice folks that seem very interested in pleasing the customer. Located on westheimer just west of beltway 8.

Man, I so want to try this place since I read about it in both the Chronicle and the Press. Seems like a true original and unique new joint. Problem is, it's so damn out of my way.

E. Nassar
Houston, TX

My Blog
contact: enassar(AT)gmail(DOT)com

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I hit Cafe Pita last week for Bosnian food. I split the HUGE pita with cheese. Its a pastry filled with beef, spinach, potatoes or cheese and served with a side of what seemed to be a sour cream cheese? The pastry was excellent. Also split the beef sandwich which was served with a bun that almost resembled a large english muffin. It was pretty good, I got the stuffed kind.

Its run by some very nice folks that seem very interested in pleasing the customer. Located on westheimer just west of beltway 8.

Man, I so want to try this place since I read about it in both the Chronicle and the Press. Seems like a true original and unique new joint. Problem is, it's so damn out of my way.

No problem, Elie! On your way out to Phoenicia Market, stop in for a quick taste.

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So as I've had all eyes out on the Houston Soup Dumpling watch, after being horribly underwhelmed by Robb Walsh's recommendation of FuFu's Cafe's soup dumplings (the dumplings were way too big, skins too thick, flavor was so so.) A few doors down from there in the Dun Huang center, across the street from Sinh Sinh, like a block down from beltway 8 and bellaire, there's a place called Paradise Cafe.

I was first drawn to the place because they had a picture of a guy stretching a mainland china specialty (I think) called lai mein (or beef la noodles on the menu), or hand stretched noodles that result in bucatini-like doughy noodles served in a thick, beefy broth. I ordered those and noticed that the soup dumplings were on the menu too (disguised as pork bun w. juice) The noodles looked nothing like on the picture outside, but the soup dumplings had a porky center and a nice gingery, exploding broth to it. Plus if you have a big enough mouth the whole thing can fit in unlike the ones a fufu.

As an overall restaurant, fufu is better, but for just soup dumplings, give paradise a chance.

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I had the steamed buns at Xiongs the other day because I was trying to find soup dumplings and I had heard they were hidden at Xiongs by the Steamed Bun name. Not really knowing what I was lookinh for with the exception of seeing them on some tv shows I would have to say that Xiongs does not have soup dumplings. It was basically a steamed dumpling with pork but no broth? Still Xiongs is awesome for the cilantro/chive dumpling and the cucumber pork noodles!

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this discussion topic is a great idea. after some careful thought, i compiled a list of of restaurants i have been meaning to try:

himalaya

polonia

chez georges

charivari

kanomwan

arirang

VIN

tacambero taco truck

i have himalaya tentatively scheduled for lunch next week. i'll report back.

"Our lives are not in the lap of the gods, but in the lap of our cooks."

-Lin Yutang, The Importance of Living, 1937

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this discussion topic is a great idea.  after some careful thought, i compiled a list of of restaurants i have been meaning to try:

himalaya

polonia

chez georges

charivari

kanomwan

arirang

VIN

tacambero taco truck

i have himalaya tentatively scheduled for lunch next week.  i'll report back.

Note that if you have himalaya scheduled for lunch next week, you're going to want to go back again and again over the next several days until you've tried the entire menu.

So far, the only thing I've had that was just okay is the saag paneer.

Just saying, maybe you should keep your schedule open.

you can go try, but I don't thin arirang is really worth your time. The korean restaurants down on longpoint/gesser area are much better.

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I had the steamed buns at Xiongs the other day because I was trying to find soup dumplings and I had heard they were hidden at Xiongs by the Steamed Bun name. Not really knowing what I was lookinh for with the exception of seeing them on some tv shows I would have to say that Xiongs does not have soup dumplings. It was basically a steamed dumpling with pork but no broth? Still Xiongs is awesome for the cilantro/chive dumpling and the cucumber pork noodles!

Xiong's I do not believe has them. Classic kitchen right next door (owned I believe by the same people) does.

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I had the steamed buns at Xiongs the other day because I was trying to find soup dumplings and I had heard they were hidden at Xiongs by the Steamed Bun name. Not really knowing what I was lookinh for with the exception of seeing them on some tv shows I would have to say that Xiongs does not have soup dumplings. It was basically a steamed dumpling with pork but no broth? Still Xiongs is awesome for the cilantro/chive dumpling and the cucumber pork noodles!

Xiong's I do not believe has them. Classic kitchen right next door (owned I believe by the same people) does.

There is family teahouse or something that is next door that actually has a little opening in the middle that would enable someone to pass an item over to the otherside. I didn't notice Classic Kitchen though.

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I hit Chicago Beef on Airline today for a Chicago Italian Beef. Pretty good job bringing the IB to town. The gadinera was ok and the bun a little big for my taste but overall it would hang with an avg IB in Chicago say a Prtillos, not the best (chicago)still worth eating. Also they have real fresh cut french fries and they are fried pretty well.

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this discussion topic is a great idea.  after some careful thought, i compiled a list of of restaurants i have been meaning to try:

himalaya

polonia

chez georges

charivari

kanomwan

arirang

VIN

tacambero taco truck

i have himalaya tentatively scheduled for lunch next week.  i'll report back.

I don't know if this was just a bad day but I was at Farmers Mrkt today and Tacambaro was not there! Lets hope it is a vacation thing.

Jarro's on Gessner has some great tacos as well. No Sweetbread ones though.

Himalaya is great, I had it twice in 4 days recently. My waistline already shows it.

Edited by jscarbor (log)
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the tacambero truck wasn't there last month either when i went by. yes, hopefully they have just been taking some time off lately.

"Our lives are not in the lap of the gods, but in the lap of our cooks."

-Lin Yutang, The Importance of Living, 1937

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i don't know if my waistline can handle multiple visits next week, but i'm excited that everyone is so delighted with himalaya. plus, it's a fairly far drive for me. thanks for the tip on the saag paneer. i probably would have ordered it.

and thanks for the suggestion of skipping arirang. i'll try komart first and then maybe seoul garden or korean garden for a proper dinner. do you have any suggestions on must-orders? i love spicy food. btw, i was very happy with the tofu soup and BBQ short ribs at tofu village and have been their twice in the last month. the side dishes were unexceptional though.

Edited by neverfull (log)

"Our lives are not in the lap of the gods, but in the lap of our cooks."

-Lin Yutang, The Importance of Living, 1937

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