April is here! Need a lunch or dinner recommendation? Here’s where you should eat right now in Houston.
With live music, sharable Latin American dishes, and a patio that’s already earning praise, Batanga has opened just in time to capitalize on Houston’s best weather months of the year. Stop by to revel in a festive atmosphere and fun food.
The menu features plenty of things that “oink, moo, fly, or swim,” but we especially love the long list of veggie dishes — like the marinated beets, Swiss chard and eggplant fries.
Goro & Gun
While there’s not much Houston lacks in the way of ethnic cuisine, we’ve been noticeably light on ramen. Good thing the new Goro & Gun downtown has arrived to fill that niche.
This small restaurant features two ramens (go with the veggie!), though the menu’s other options are just as worthy — like the roasted Brussels sprouts with pickled raisins and pine nuts and the 72-hour tempura short ribs.
Chef Ryan Savoie creates his lineup far in advance, and there are no substitutions, so you’ll want to find the daily offering that appeals most to you. Don’t worry, beer tastings are available as well.
My adoration of Asian food trucks continues with the Vietnamese MuSuBi. The roast duck and garlic beef banh mi was a dream with its tender meats, generous toppings and killer bread. But my favorite part was the actual musubi, a gourmet’d up Japanese/Hawaiian treat. Mine featured shrimp and crab in a spicy sauce.
Follow @MuSuBiHOUSTON on Twitter for a schedule and location.
Good news for those who can’t wait for Ronnie Killen’s new BBB (BBQ, burgers and beer) restaurant to open this summer: The new concept is operating as a weekend pop-up until then. Stop by Killen’s Steakhouse in Pearland, on Saturdays and Sundays starting at 11 a.m., to sample the smoked meats and sides that won raves at the recent Houston BBQ Festival.
Mighty Sweet Mini Pies
This new family-run mini-pie shop in the Heights has already developed a loyal following, thanks to homemade crusts and old-fashioned ingredients. The owners make hundreds of mini-pies a day in five fresh flavors that rotate.
We’re always too slow to catch the Key Lime and Peanut Butter Chocolate, but heartily recommend the Tangerine Chess.
The best sushi places are often the most expensive (with reason), but the new Michiru Sushi in Greenway Plaza offers a solid sushi lineup at reasonable prices. While I wasn’t able to try these tuna-on-tuna dumplings, the fish and hot dishes offered a nice take on your favorite Japanese favorites.
It may not blow you away, but the portions are fresh and large, and the atmosphere is upbeat and fun.
The Good Life – Midtown Bar & Kitchen
Midtown’s got a new go-to spot in The Good Life, a neighborhood bar and patio that opened in March. In addition to a nice selection of craft beers and cocktails, the Good Life offers what it calls edible cocktails — gussied up Jello shots basically.
There’s also a nice menu (designed by Roost’s Kevin Naderi) featuring things like brats in a blanket, brisket sliders and nachos.
The unique Oxheart has captured all kinds of accolades in its one-year existence. Most recently chef Justin Yu was a semifinalist for a James Beard award, while pastry chef Karen Man was nominated for Food & Wine’s Best New Pastry Chef.
Reservations for the tiny restaurant are hard to come by, but you can often snag a spot on a Sunday or Monday night.
While Underbelly could probably sit atop this list every month, we try to spread the love. After all, you already know about Underbelly, and you’ve probably eaten there.
But chef Chris Shepherd was just named a Best New Chef by Food & Wine, which is kind of a big deal — for him, for his restaurant and for Houston. So for those of you who haven’t made it over there yet, by all means go now.