A Slow Foodie in the Bayou City
August 2, 2005 12:17 PM   Subscribe

Where should I eat and drink in Houston?

I'm going to be in Houston next week, and I'm looking for pointers on where to eat, drink (brewpubs) and buy foodie things. I'm staying pretty far west on the Katy Freeway, and attending a conference at the Galleria. I'll have a car. I'm UK-based, and am particularly interesting in finding some good Mexican ingredients / spices to bring back with me, if there are any indispensible grocers. I've seen some good advice from e-Gullet and Chowhound but I'd certainly appreciate any personal recommendations for good (real) Mexican and Vietnamese food.
posted by sagwalla to Food & Drink (10 answers total)
I don't know the west area all that well, but Pappasito's is a chain, it's a reliably good mexican chain. Since you're staying near Katy, there should be a Kim Son close. My favorite local restaurant, Amazon Grill, is near the Galleria. They have very good South American food for very reasonable prices. Any Fiesta grocery store should be able to provide you with authentic ingredients.
posted by renyoj at 12:51 PM on August 2, 2005

It's been a few years since I was there last, but my favorite restaurant in Houston has been and always will be Americas.

I second the recommendation for Kim Son too. I always liked eating there in college. Didn't know it was a chain, though. Is that new in the last 10 years or so?
posted by MsMolly at 1:01 PM on August 2, 2005

Goode Company Barbecue is essential. And lots of other Texas barbecue places too. If you've never had Texas barbecue, you simply must.
posted by grouse at 1:11 PM on August 2, 2005

House of Pies, 6142 Westheimer.
Mama Ninfas, 6154 Westheimer

(they're right next door to each other, and just down the street from the Galleria too - here's a map)

Moved here from Austin six months ago, and I love it.
posted by mrbill at 1:46 PM on August 2, 2005

Oh, and how could I forget Le Viet, 11328A Westheimer (past Beltway 8 / "Sam Houston Tollway").
posted by mrbill at 1:50 PM on August 2, 2005

And one more - Eatzis is a nifty little market/bakery/deli, 1702 Post Oak. It's even closer than the other places I've posted.

(can you tell I live in the area? Westheimer & Gessner..)
posted by mrbill at 1:53 PM on August 2, 2005

Dude, if you're gonna go to the House of Guys, go to the one on Kirby. But only at 2am, and only for pie. As for Ninfa's, you're 2x better off at the original on Navigation.

sagwalla: in addition to Mexican and Vietnamese, Houston is also great for barbecue (Goode company will do), Cajun, and Creole. For Creole one of my favourite places is Brennan's.
posted by Nelson at 2:16 PM on August 2, 2005

If you want good spices go to Penzey's (on 19th in the Heights). I won't even go to Fiesta for spices anymore because Penzey's is so much more fresh. Thing with Penzey's is that it is a small chain and mail order. Unless you just want to walk around and smell all the goods it is just as easy to order it.
For Asian... Go down to Bellaire off Beltway 8 (Sam Houston Toll Road). There are lots of yummy places to eat and stores. Hong Kong City Mall has a great grocery store inside and Ocean Palace has tasty Dim Sum.
Richmond Arms is a Brit style pub. For a while it had lots of friendly skinheads hang about but I dont know if they still do. La Carafe (813 Congress St) in downtown is a great little bar.
posted by nimsey lou at 3:54 PM on August 2, 2005

I haven't been in a while but "Los Cucos (16216 Clay Rd, Houston, TX 77084)" is out your way and used to be good Mexican food.

Also for Barbecue out your way there is "Carl's (21920 Northwest Fwy (Hwy 290))".
posted by AtomicToaster at 6:07 PM on August 2, 2005

Thank you all for the advice. I'm looking forward to my visit. I may report back, but this post will have slipped way into history by then.
posted by sagwalla at 1:14 AM on August 3, 2005

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