I kinda like visiting Katy, Texas - A Travelogue in Four Parts

Needing to get out of the house on a beautiful last day of winter, I coaxed Jaymes into preparing a pig-out itinerary for me in her backyard area of Katy. Not only did she map out a few of her favorites, but she agreed to guide our little tour.

First up, Proud Pie for coffee and pressert; (that’s “pre-dessert”, as in dessert you have before lunch).

I had a nice cafe au lait and a slice of Caramel Apple. Knowing I had a long day ahead of me, I asked for mine “to go” so that I could just take a bite or two and take the rest home. Didn’t work out that way. Ate the whole slice.

They have a variety of pastries, sandwiches, etc. Nice little place.

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Part The Second:

We hied ourselves thence to Deli’s Cafe. It’s a little Venezuelan eatery inside of an Exxon station.

No really.

It’s inside the Exxon. Wait, there’s more. There’s a hair salon INSIDE the restaurant. At least you have to go through the restaurant to get to the salon. I don’t know what the relationships are, but it doesn’t matter.

Jaymes recommended the cachapa con queso de mano, (with “handmade cheese”). I learned a cachapa is a corn meal pancake griddle fried and in this case, folded over and filled with a sweet, soft white cheese. She asked if they made it themselves and was told “no”. She asked if they had a cheese lady who made it for them and was told “no”. I don’t know where the cheese comes from or whose hands make it, but it was really good.

I just had a bite though as I opted for an arepa with carne mechada or shredded braised beef. Very good.

Jaymes said that it’s a popular lunch place with the many landscaping crews that keep the Katy subdivisions looking manicured and I can believe it.

Next up,

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Hoodadak.

Yeah, that Korean fried chicken place you’ve been hearing about. I’ll be honest - This is the one I was most looking forward to. It’s a cute little shop with a number of craft beers available and a number of different styles of chicken to be had. I opted for for the “Hot” which are fried in a spicy coating and not sauced. Jaymes had the “Sweet and Spicy” which was mostly sweet and not very spicy in my opinion. We also got a side order of kimchi which was really good - spicy and garlicky.

I absolutely understand the appeal of the super crispy, twice fried chicken. I don’t care what anybody says, get the unsauced “Hot” version. It’s Doobielicious.

Is it over yet? You wish!

Lastly,

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Jaymes has been trying to get me out to The Good Ole Boys for at least a couple of years. Any time I mention crawfish, or boudin, or anything even vaguely Cajun-y she says “You gotta come out to Good Ole Boys”.

First, let me give you fair warning, if you’re the type who’s put out by an errant fold in your starched white tablecloth, this is NOT your kind of place.

If you insist on a cloth napkin in choice of white or black to match your slacks, this ain’t your kind of place.

If you prefer your table to be sitting on a perfectly sterile imported slate tile floor…or a “floor”, this ain’t your kind of place.

But if you like a fun place for the whole family, with great food, ice cold beer, and an owner who wants nothing so much as to make a new friend and sing your momma a bawdy song, “You gotta come out to Good Ole Boys”.

What a great spot. It looks like an auto salvage yard. Wait, that’s not entirely accurate.

In truth, it looks like a dilapidated and abandoned salvage yard. The open air dining room has picnic tables on a crushed rock …base…(I hesitate to call it a floor).

And it’s by far the coolest place I’ve been in years.

The owner’s name is Jay. If you don’t ask for him and let him stop by to entertain you, you’ve missed the best part. And the food is so good that it’s really saying something.

Oh yeah, we had boudin balls, (huge and excellent), boiled crawfish, (not the best I’ve ever had but we like them boiled in insanely spicy water), and Cajun tamales. These are those Mississippi Delta tamales you’ve heard tell about. They’re really good. He makes them with a spiced masa and a lot of Cajun seasonings in the meat, (pork, chicken or boudin). We got pork. Another quirk, he rolls them in 8X8 sheets of Sysco aluminum instead of corn husks. Why? For the best reason there is: “That’s how my momma and her momma did it”.

Go see Jay and leave your pretensions at the door. You’ll have a ball. It’s a hoot and a half.

Let me say in conclusion that all four of those spots had very helpful and nicely engaging service. If these are your neighbors, you’re living the good life,.

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How fun y’all!

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@DoobieWah, I saw your post in my “New” threads, and had to read it. And while I’ll never make it to Katy, Texas to sample all of the goodies you had, I had to say I LOVE your “Foodilogue” of your 1-day travels. Sounds like you had a most excellent tour guide!

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Indeed we did!

Thanks again Jaymes!!

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You are so welcome, although it is I that thank you. I know it’s hard dragging yourself out here when you’re living smack dab in the midst of one of the best “food cities” in the whole nation. And I had such a fun time. Seriously. One of the best days I’ve had in quite a while.

I do enjoy “Proud Pie,” and am eager to give them a little support and publicity. They’re new, and trying to make a go of it and I think they’re doing a fine job. Of all of the pies at Proud Pie, the one of which they’re probably proudest is their Cherry Pie: https://www.facebook.com/proudpiekaty/photos/a.1416719428648823.1073741828.1382147682105998/1554706151516816/?type=1&theater

We didn’t have it yesterday, but I’ve ordered it before, and it really is terrific. This is also a good place for coffee, sandwiches, snacks.

And then to Deli’s Café. I’ll admit I drove by it for a couple of years before hearing somebody rave about those cachapas with that green sauce. And now I can’t get enough. And yes, the place is “interesting.” Sometimes when I’m in there, I can hear giggly girly Spanish “charla” coming from that hair salon while, at a table near to me, what is clearly somebody’s husband waits patiently, snacking on Venezuelan food and reading a Spanish-language newspaper. Seems odd. But works well. A hair salon with a waiting room that provides delicious food. What’s not to like?

Hoodadak is pretty good, too. As I’ve said, I’ve never been much of a fan of chicken wings when I can grab a nice, meaty thigh. But these are really good. As DW’s Mamma noted, when you walk into the restaurant, you definitely get a “whiff of Korea” - the garlic and vinegar of kimchi. It can be sort of off-putting, but once you tear into those crispy morsels, the initial unfamiliar aroma has vanished, and it seems like a small price to pay.

And then…Good Ole’ Boys. I was much afeerd that, after three other places, my little troupe would abandon me and head back to town. That would have been such a disappointment. As Doobs says, I’ve been bragging on this place ever since I discovered it, several years back. I know I’ve told the story before but I’ll repeat it. I happened upon it, quite serendipitously. My car had been involved in a fender-bender and somebody told me that there was a “good body shop a couple of miles west of Katy on the feeder road on the south side of I-10.” So I set out to find it. After driving around for a while, I spotted what I was sure was it. A bunch of cars and pickups parked around in no particular order, with no apparent organization, in what seemed to be a gravel used-car lot, in front of and around a ramshackle building of some sort. So I worked my way in among the maze of vehicles and found a (very) small unoccupied spot, where I stopped, turned off my engine, and got out to go find somebody to give me an estimate.

To my complete surprise, as I threaded my way on foot amongst the cars and towards the “building,” I began to hear music. And to smell food. At first I thought it must be somebody’s birthday, perhaps the owner’s, that the workers were celebrating. And then it dawned on me, to my astonishment, “This is a restaurant!”

Naturally, I immediately decided to postpone my unpleasant auto body-shop search for another day.

Since that serendipitous discovery, I’ve returned several times with my daughter and her husband and kids, and an assortment of other friends and family. We have never failed to have a great time. It’s especially wonderful on spring and autumn nights when the weather is mild. You sit outside under the stars while the children play and people dance to live music from country or Cajun bands. It’s hard to exactly describe the atmosphere but, imagine you’re lucky enough to belong to a large family bornned and bredded on the Bayou Teche, and your uncle Boudreaux has a big place west of town and on Saturdays he and all the cousins and other redatives get together and throw a big party and as the sun starts to set, he grabs his guitar and starts to sing about how he “don’t look good nekked anymore.” And the beer is cold and the mudbugs are hot and you’re always invited.

If you’re not that lucky, you can come here.

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That is it exactly. Nicely put.

Sounds like somebody needs to alert Chet Garner to the attractions of Katy. Millions of Houstonians/Texans have no idea what they’re missing.

I stumbled onto a Venezuelan import company a few years back, possibly the source of the cheeses? No storefront, just offices, right down the street from House of Bread, a Filipino bakery and grocery store, and Pho Tan Mai, nestled amidst the several Indian places serving the ex-pat community from Kerala in bustling downtown multi-cultural Stafford.

No Venezuelan cafe anywhere, tho. I’d love to have something like Deli’s or Budare close to me.

He had a watch party at the Rudy’s in Katy last year. He’s in Sugar Land/Ft. Bend/Brazos Bend State Park this week according to his Instagram.

Well, it’s not exactly a “Day Trip”. It took me 20 minutes to get from my door to Proud Pie. And while I did take the Westpark Tollway, OBD had me take “the scenic route”. :wink:

His day trips originate in Austin!

I had forgotten that I had taken a couple of pics:

Jaymes’ Cachapa from Deli’s Cafe

My Arepa from Deli’s Cafe

Jay the Bearded Bard from Good Ole Boys

I’m terrible about taking pics and I take terrible pics, so…

That’s all I got. If you want to know what everything else looks like, just get out there.

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That would a Donald Link family gathering in SW La.

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Article from Houstonia.

I’ve not heard of nitrogen ice cream. Sounds wacky!

Yeah, that place is right next to Hoodadak, but Jaymes didn’t recommend it, so I didn’t even look in the door.

Hmmmm…

Look what’s going up in the strip center occupied by Hoodadak. It is the new Little Korea.

I had lunch again today at Hoodadak, and got the hot spicy wings, which were coated with a dry rub and very very spicy. Hot and fresh and made to order. I’ll probably go with the garlic next time.

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Jaymes? Maybe it’s time you arrange another guided tour of your little burg!

“Food is a pretty good prism through which to view humanity.”

― Jonathan Gold