Adventures in H-Town
New in town, and already I have 15 favorite Houston restaurants
Editor's note: Cathy Parsons recently moved from Music City (Nashville) to the Bayou City (Houston). In a periodic column, she will write about her new life here.
In the book/movie Eat, Pray, Love by Elizabeth Gilbert, one of my favorite parts is when the author is in Rome and they are all discussing the city’s “word.” Rome’s word, they decided, is "sex." The word for NYC is "ambition" and D.C.’s word is "power."
So after a few months of living in dining heaven, I have come to the conclusion that Houston’s word must be "eat."
Right after I moved here, I read somewhere that the residents of Houston eat out more often than in any other city, and I am certainly doing my part. There is such a dizzying array of choices that I am truly overwhelmed when asked for recommendations when my friends come into town. I find myself reading every review I can get my hands on, and one of my first questions when I met anyone is, “What is your favorite restaurant?” I even have a little notebook in my purse where I record these places.
Since my boyfriend has lived in Houston for many years, he is a great source to educate me on dining establishments in the city, but there is one little thing that we realized pretty early on: I am a huge foodie and RT… not so much. He knows many good places around Houston, but his tastes are a bit more traditional than mine.
And he does not like sushi! Gasp!
Sushi isn’t something I take lightly- thus my quest to find the best in the city. Please advise.
Coming from Nashville, it didn’t take me very long at all to get around to virtually all of the restaurants in Music City, but in Houston? I will need years and years. It’s not just the variety, but the values are usually really terrific compared to other big cities. So if you are new to Houston (or just like reading what places newcomers have fallen in love with), I have come up with a few faves, in no order whatsoever:
Sullivan’s - Awesome martinis and old school vibe and piano bar
Catalan – Fun and lively with an interesting menu
Ruggles on Westheimer – Always right on and desserts to die for!
Grappino’s/Nino’s - The first meal RT and I shared in Houston , romantic outdoor patio
Cadillac Bar – Enormous brunch if you are starving on the weekend, and just dynamite Tex-Mex
Grotto - Love the outdoor fire pit area and the open hearth ovens provide a delicious aroma inside
Vic & Anthony's – Very grown up and established with great steaks (which I don’t eat, but RT loves)
Little Pappasito's – I am a sucker for salsa and theirs is so good
Post Oak Grill – A Houston classic with fabulous service
RC’s Pizza – Located in Kingwood and the absolute BEST I have had since I moved to Houston
Ragin Cajun – Grad a handful of napkins and order up
The Black Labrador – Heavy, but great for British classics
Escalante’s – Love their style of healthy Tex-Mex
Acadian Bakery – Baked goods that will blow you away
Americas – Sexy ambience and fabulous cuisine
I know, I know… this is a tiny list, and I have only begun to scratch the surface. Feel free to write your recommendations in the comments and I will add them in my notebook. I have no doubt that I will continue the “list” for years to come.
Looks like I will be gearing up for a lifetime of strenuous workouts so that I can take full advantage of the fabulous food here in Houston, but it will be so worth it.