What's For Lunch Houston - 2018

I have only been to BB’s for the first time in the past 6 months after a new one opened not far from my home. I thought the fried shrimp was the best I’ve ever had, and returned with my whole extended family on New Years Day since everyone was too ill during Christmas week to get together. That was a brutal flu season. But I’ve only had the fried shrimp and the RBR was adequate but not great.

Speaking of RBR, this is something I’m excited about: Walk On’s is coming to Houston. I’ll put this on the openings page too.

Took a road trip last weekend and had lunch at Walk On’s Bistreaux and Bar at the LSU campus in Baton Rouge. This chain is part owned by Drew Brees, some sort of Austin, Texas/New Orleans, LA baller. :smile:

It’s a sports bar (duh) but the food is guaranteed house made and it was, in fact, very good. Being in LA makes me crave RBR and the version here was absolutely spot on, supercalifragilisticexpialidocious. My only complaint is that it is a small side dish, like potato salad or something. IMA NEED A BOWL OF THIS. Also, more beans, less rice.

In my google session following, I learned that Walk On’s is opening 8-10 restaurants in Houston soon, beginning with Spring and Katy locations! Woohoo!

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A place that serves better bread than Boudreaux’s will be a plus. I’ve heard about Segari’s for years, never been and never think about it. Maybe I’ll finally get around to checking it out.

For many years now, maybe as much as 15, I have almost exclusively gone for the chicken and sausage variety of gumbo. That may be because of Burt’s or maybe because I’m a sausage fanatic and so drawn to it or something else.

For now I’m stickin’ to seafood gumbo. And ‘seafood,’ not just shrimp, which several places offer. I wish I was getting more crab. Some places offer to add crab for a fee.

I remembered this article from the Press.

Knapp was the short-lived critic for the Press who came here from NOLA just before the position was eliminated. As such, I thought she was worth paying attention to. I’m certainly no expert and my tastes are (probably) evolving as I try new bowls.

Potato salad in gumbo??? Okay, show me where.

This list is why I’ve got 713 on my list.

I was thinking Lambsy reported on the Liberty Kitchen version with fried oysters but it won’t come up in a search. I’m leery. Soggy, fried oysters? Anyway, it’s too late in the season for good oysters imo.

Maybe I shoulda started a separate thread for gumbo. Too late, I guess.

Never too late! I’ll wait. Danton’s has a unique gumbo, very very dark with few chopped veggies. Raw seafood added to the very hot roux just before serving so it is perfectly (and not overly) cooked when served with rice on the side as is best!

Returned to Izikaya Wa for lunch and the place was packed including the outside picnic table covered patio. We were the only caucasions I saw, a sign of authenticity? Definitely a draw for the Japanese ex-pats.

Next time I’ll try the curry dish they are proud of, today I just wanted sushi. The handroll special comes with 4 rolls, soup and salad for $12. Bargain.

Also tried the octopus takoyaki which just remind me of Anthony Bourdain. They came scattered with bonito flakes and drizzled with spicy mayo. A little starchy for me but interesting.


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The French Dip that we talked about a couple of weeks ago is still on my mind and my to-do list but meantime I saw the thread on the SFBA board about the Porchetta Dip.

It was immediately obvious to me that I had to have one, so I went looking and found a Porchetta sandwich (sans Dip) at Ploughman’s Deli on Pinemont. Alas, the owners apparently decided it was just too 2017 and it’s not on the current menu. I decided to go check out the deli anyway.

I got the Pastramarama, apparently their ‘signature’ sandwich - house made pastrami, house made stone ground mustard, caramelized onions and gruyere cheese on toasted rye. The bread may not look toasted but it was, very evenly. The pastrami was about a quarter inch thick, probably brisket flat, very tender and moist. The onions were over-cooked, for my taste, more of an onion spread. I thought the meat was under-salted but it was just the sweetness of the onions that was taking over.

The red-skin potato salad was just potatoes, hard-boiled egg (large chunks of white and yolks) and mayo. I thought it was under-salted, too. It might have been very freshly made also so that the flavors hadn’t really come together. With a little salt and some time in the fridge overnight, I thought the leftover portion was much better, but I still would have liked something pickly to cut some of the richness of the yolks and mayo.

The place is very small - four 2-tops, 6 stools at a bar in the front window, 2 tables outside with 3 chairs each. The menu is small and it’s a bit pricey but the food was hand-crafted and impressive enough that I would come back.

The problem for me is having to deal with the W. Loop to get there (50 minutes going up, 48 coming home) so I won’t be a regular. They have a special every day - yesterday it was a Brewben sandwich (didn’t get the details) and the soup of the day was black bean. If the Porchetta pops back up on the menu, I’m there.

In the meantime, what have we got in the way of pork sandwiches, Houston? Pulled Pork, Banh Mi, fried pork chop sandwiches and Cubano’s? If you know of any others, please let me know

Well it looks terrific! The new Leibman’s opened I-10 @ Gessner and they have a different sandwich menu then before, although the new additions are really interesting looking. I intend to try them out soon.


Thanks. I’ve been seeing this mentioned in the foodie media but hadn’t checked it out yet. It does look interesting; will look forward to a report. I only went to the other location once - quite a ways out there. This will be a bit more convenient I think. I can’t remember what I got.

The soaring temps have made the idea of slurping hot Japanese or Chinese noodle soups or hot Cajun/Creole soups, a bit less appealing. I was wanting some pasta yesterday, though, preferably house-made, so I went to Paulie’s.

Seeing the gazpacho on the menu was one of the things that drew me here. I had seen one reviewer complain that it was just salsa and I blew it off as someone being snarky. But no, this was basically a chunky salsa. The dollop of sour cream was offered - I don’t recall ever having it on gazpacho before but I thought I’d try it. It helped with this rather strange version. Chunky toms - stewed? - and small dice of other ingredients. The onions were finely minced, chunks of cucumber were irregular. There was lemon rather than lime juice I thought and some heat; no cilantro. I like to support my local gazpacho maker whenever I can but I’d skip this next time.

The house-made fusilli primavera was served very hot, hotter than some soups I’ve had recently! There was zucchini, carrots, mushrooms, tomatoes, broccoli and spinach with olive oil and garlic, with some grated parmesan in the background for sprinkling and grilled bread. This was pretty good; the pasta was very ‘heavy.’ This was the half-order or ‘small’ and I was stuffed.

Parking was no issue at 2 pm; the lot was not even half full.

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That kinda activated my gag reflex. I only tried Paulie’s once and it was peak lunch time and I made alternate plans when I saw the line for counter order and the number of tables. That set up of “order first then hawk a table” makes me anxious…hehe. I’ll sit if there’s a table available, THEN order, not the other way around though. Has it changed? I’d like to get back because I hear their food is generally quite good. Maybe off peak though.

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I managed to finish the cup but I wasn’t thrilled. I love gazpacho so much I had asked about the bowl. Warning: soup bowls at Paulie’s are the size of a wash basin. I never would have made it. I’m sure they don’t fill them all the way up or it would take two people to carry to a table :smile:

Hey, I eat salsa right out of the jar as a snack but this just wasn’t right.

Like I said, no crowd, and you don’t hear as much about the place as you used to. This was my second visit and may be my last. Not really to die for. I like the house-made pasta at Fresco on the SW Fwy that I’ve mentioned before better.

Oh by the way, I’m taking a friend out to a birthday dinner soon and he likes Italian. I know you’re very knowledgeable about the options. What can you recommend? I’m particularly interested these days in house-made, fresh pasta.

He lives near Giacomo’s but has never been. Like me, he assumed it’s white table cloth since it’s on the edge of River Oaks, but I see it’s actually very casual. But they have a limit of 2 checks per table which would be a problem - there’ll probably be at least a half dozen of us and I ain’t treatin’ 'em all!

Hmm, I recently had a good housemade ravioli at Ciro’s, but it’s a little more upscale in its new location. Giacomo’s has the best bolognese I’ve had with the silkiest of housemade tagliatele. I recall once seeing she uses Marcella Hazan’s recipe, but the menu says pork and beef are in there. Very disappointing about the checks, that doesn’t seem very welcoming. I was once in a dinner group of ladies that got separate checks, we usually numbered 35. I always felt bad about that but we cleared it ahead of time and many restaurants accommodated the group. But a table of 6 or so doesn’t seem all that onerous.

Of course Mascalzone is one of my favs for housemade pasta, but their only remaining location is way out west. I have plans to visit the new Potente for a special occasion, the Italian owned by the Astros fellow. I’m excited to try the wildly popular Truffled Pasta dish there. It’s a special occasion kinda place, but next door on Texas Ave by the ball park its casual sister eatery Osso & Kristalla also dishes up pasta, both have been getting really good reviews so I’ll let you know.

I think you were at the HO meetup at Coltivare, weren’t you? I dont’ recall anyone ordering pasta, but that no reservations place may still be hard to get into without standing around for an hour first. Let us know where you went and how it was!

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Thanks for mentioning those downtown spots. I never think of places downtown or go downtown but they both look good. Hmmmmm.

I think the first Tex-Mex I had after moving to Texas as-fast-as-I-could-get-here sometime in the 1970s was probably at Los Tios, or at least it was one of the first. But I haven’t been in literally decades.

This week I skipped lunch and got hungry just before 3 and ran into the Los Tios on Memorial Drive. I’ll tell you, the prices have not stayed the same! I squeaked into the dining room just before the lunch menu cut-off of 3:00, peered into the separate lounge (hahahahaha! Those used to be so cool, but I was too young and then not interested I guess), and then was seated in the main dining room. I was amazed, the food was better than I remember. In fact, I ate all of it, a rare thing.

Then when I was writing this, I looked it up and whaaaa? Los Tios was bought by the Adair family of Adair Kitchen fame in 2000. Who knew. They claim to have introduced the first FROZEN margarita to Houston in '75. They offer mini margs at lunch for $3.


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You really went retro.

How was it?

Wow. That certainly does look like a plate of food :grin:
And that puffy thing with cheese sure is puffy and sure does have a lot of cheese on it :grin:

Sorry - just havin’ a little fun. My two experiences at Los Tios, muchos anos ago, were not very satisfying. I think I remember reading when they were sold, the new owners tried to change some recipes but customers complained and they changed back.

That thing on the back of the plate is a little disconcerting. Is that a chili sauce or cheese sauce or chili-cheese sauce on enchiladas or tamales or what. The color just looks odd to me.

I don’t know nothin’ about the Adair’s, I guess. But I used to go to Skeeter’s, the original on Weslayan. Used to be one of my favorite places for burgers. Can’t remember ever having anything else there, though.

Haha! I can’t explain it but I loved it. It was lunch combo number 6: cheese enchilada, taco and their signature “puffy queso” which is just a taco bowl upside down. The enchilada had been under the salamander longer than usual but I loved the bubly cheese. I can’t explain it, perhaps it was because I was so hungry. Also, both shells stayed crunchy to the end, where do you find that??

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I had a cousin who loved the place. She didn’t cook. Her husband did, even ran a small sandwich shop for a few years, but when he was out of town or didn’t want to cook, they took the kids to Los Tios. She said they went as often as 3 or 4 times a week at times. I joined them once, back in the 70s. It wasn’t awful but it didn’t measure up to whatever I did like at that time (Monterey House, Felix??? I don’t remember). Hey, if you loved it, that’s what matters.

Now I have been scolded for replying to you too often in this thread, so I’m outta here :grin:

How do we tell the program that if we had more participants, we wouldn’t have to talk to each other so much? :smile: We’re already down one for the year thank-you-very-much.


Replying or stalking? Seriously there’s only a handful of us so what do they expect?