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Marene Gustin


Marene Gustin writes about Texas culture, food, fashion, the arts and even Lone Star politics and crime for magazines, newspapers and Web sites nationwide. She has more than 20 years experience as a print, television and Internet journalist. Her humorous Food for Thought column on CultureMap combines the inside scoop on Houston dining with perspectives you won't find anywhere else.

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All articles by this author.  235 Results. Showing 1 to 20
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Restaurant Secrets

Restaurant secrets: Houston's top chefs open up on what drove them into the kitchen

By Marene Gustin

“For me cooking started as a necessity, grew to a core and developed into passion,” says Shannen Tune, executive chef at Hotel Derek. “I come from a family of great ...

Food for Thought

Eat, Read, Die: Authors use food (sometimes even a topped chef) as a novel way to solve a crime

By Marene Gustin

I read. A lot. I used to go to the library once a week and get four or five books and haul at least one of them around with me ...

Anything Goes Restaurants

Anything goes restaurants: The best places to eat at when you don't know what the hell you want

By Marene Gustin

Some days I know exactly what I want to eat and where I want to go to eat it. Then there are days when I really have no idea what ...

Food for Thought

Houston's best restaurant potatoes: Stop crucifying the spud and embrace the latest health "danger"

By Marene Gustin

What do potatoes taste like? Seriously, have you ever eaten a plain potato? No salt, no flavorings, no nothing. Just a starchy, white tuber. I suppose if I were Audrey ...

Food for Thought

Why American grocery store ham is a gross travesty: And where you can find the true good stuff

By Marene Gustin

What the heck is wrong with American supermarket ham? Well, pretty much everything. I’ve never been a fan of ham. I love bacon (who doesn’t?), and a crispy-skinned ...

Top Chef Lessons

Lessons from Houston's top sushi restaurant: Don't you dare call it Chicken of the Sea!

By Marene Gustin

Growing up the only tuna I ever ate came in a can. My mother used to make tuna casserole about once a week using Campbell’s Cream of Mushroom Soup ...

Food for Thought

Keep the spirit of Sochi alive with caviar and vodka experience

By Marene Gustin

Oh, weren’t the Olympics fun? No, not the events, I mean all the media coverage of Russian culture. Particularly the morning segments on the food and watching Hoda do ...

A Saucy Business

The Sauce Queen: Local woman turns her father's food legacy into a tasty business with national visions

By Marene Gustin

Got a family recipe that everyone loves? Think you could bottle it and make some money? Yeah, probably not. But I know one woman who did. Meet Pearland’s Kim ...

Burger Confessions

Confessions of a Whataburger addict: True love includes a bundle of joy

By Marene Gustin

What did you get for Valentine’s Day? Chocolates? Flowers? Maybe jewelry? Me, I got a Fancy Ketchup Lover’s Bundle from Whataburger. And we aren’t even dating. The ...

Star Trek Restaurant Star

Former Star Trek actor builds a Houston restaurant empire: It turns out Brooklyn is just the start

By Marene Gustin

Shortly after chef Lance Fegan opened Glass Wall in 2006, I went over to interview him and was met by a dapper young man named Shepard Ross. Ross was the ...

Houston's Cocktail Culture

Farm to bottle: Top Houston restaurant offers a crash course in hot new cocktail trend

By Marene Gustin

The Houston Museum of Natural Science is one of my favorite museums in a city rife with museums. We have museums for everything in Houston, even funeral history. But, being ...

King of Kirby

The King of Kirby builds his Houston restaurant empire: It's a neighborhood thing

By Marene Gustin

The King of Kirby Drive, otherwise known as Johnny Carrabba, is about to open his third new restaurant in the neighborhood in two years. Across from the new Carrabba’s ...

Hot Houston Restaurant Trends

Houston's hot new restaurant trends — including a New York City idea that's catching on

By Marene Gustin

I recently had lunch with the delightful Melissa Stewart, executive director of the Greater Houston Restaurant Association, to pick her brain about what the industry might see in terms of ...

Best Steak In Houston

The best steak in Houston? New chef-driven restaurant emerges as a strong contender

By Marene Gustin

After all the crowds during the holidays, it’s been nice to dine out in the early January days when most folks are back to the regular grind. The last ...

Houston's Best Restaurant Bites

Houston's Best Restaurant Bites: The newcomers, oldies and departing icons that wowed

By Marene Gustin

Despite a pretty impressive list of restaurant openings right before the holidays, 2013 wasn’t the most memorable of eating years in Houston — although there were some standout dishes. The ...

Houston's Real Hunger Game

Houston's real hunger game: The holidays aren't so sweet when you're struggling to eat

By Marene Gustin

For many of us the holidays are about an abundance of friends, family, gifts and food. BFF holiday lunches at Tony’s, roasted turkey with all the trimmings, cocktails and ...

Food For Thought

Rise and shine: Best breakfast includes classic Southern dish

By Marene Gustin

At a recent Sunday brunch at Phil & Derek’s Restaurant & Wine Bar, there was something new at the omelet station: good ol’ Southern style biscuits and gravy. Phil Mitchell uses ...

Best Oysters In Houston?

The best oysters in Houston? This restaurant is a must try — especially during the holidays

By Marene Gustin

The holidays are the perfect time for oyster consumption — for enjoying those succulent, briny little bivalve mollusks that are best served raw on ice with hot horseradish or baked to ...

Food for Thought

The final days of a Houston institution: Sad goodbye lures crowds — for a last burger and beer

By Marene Gustin

The final days of Blanco’s Bar & Grill were crazy good and they reminded me of why I will miss this place. I didn’t go at night for the ...

Food for Thought

The Bermuda Triangle of Houston restaurant locales finds new life: Inside the city's eating history

By Marene Gustin

In a city that loves to tear down history and replace it with parking lots and multi-use high rises, it’s nice that some restaurants are still here, even if ...

All articles by this author.  235 Results. Showing 1 to 20
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