December 8, 2022

Recommendations - New Dining Recommendations from the Chowdown in Chinatown - Houston Group December 2022

Recommendations December 2022- From the Chowdown in Chinatown – Houston Group

 

A person who will be visiting Houston in December requested recommendations for specific cuisine in Houston and the group did their best to come up with recommendations for her.

 

Her Request: “ Hi! We will be visiting family in Houston this Christmas (we live in London). It's been too long... I was wondering if you all could help me, could you please recommend:

1) Best Vietnamese restaurant for banh cuon? Best Vietnamese restaurant in general?

2) Best TexMex place?

3) Best barbecue? I like brisket best

4) Best sushi place?

5) Best 'southern' food? Like grits and mac and cheese, etc, southern comfort food

Any suggestions, greatly appreciated! Thanks, K “

 

Here follow, recommendations from the group, in no particular order, just as they came in chronologically:

 

Maryann Nguyen

Thien thanh for banh cuon for sure!

 

Vivian Nguyen

Tex Mex- el tiempo, bbq- Pinkertons, sushi - uch

 

Lucy Tran

Some of my personal favs:

1) Thien Thanh

2) Lupe Tortilla

3) Killen's BBQ

4) Kata Robata Sushi + Grill / Ume Sushi

5) Mikki's Cafe

 

Shirley Rouse

Treebeard's for best Southern food.

 

David Tong

For Banh Cuon, my go to is Thiên Thanh.

11210 Bellaire Blvd #140, Houston, TX 77072

FYI, it’s cash only.

 

Jenny Nguyen Quach

1. Banh cuon thien thanh. It’s hard for me to pick just the best Vietnamese restaurant since there’s so many! 

2. Pappasitos. El tiempo. Ninfas. 

3. Killens bbq (my all time favorite) or corkscrew 

4. Casual sushi: izakaya wa or aka sushi. Fine dining: uchi. Mf. Kata robata. 

5. If you want “soul food” then this is it soul food or mikki’s cafe. For not as much soul, theres Lucilles or Eunice which are more southern creole food.

 

Michael Lin

Jenny Nguyen Quach agree with most of this list! If you do El Tiempo or Ninfas, make sure you try to go to the original locations, next door from each other on Navigation!

 

Tim Dau

1) Thien Thanh

2) Gringos

3) Killens (in pearland though)

4) depending on budget, but I like AYCE sushi so Sushi Masa or True Sushi

 

So-Young Iris

I got you! 

1. Thiên Thanh

2. Candente 

3. Killens or cork screw (best bbq is outside of city) let me know if u want inside the loop and I can send those. 

4. Kokoro or hando douzo for more authentic amazing quality and good price. 

For speciality rolls I like “the fish” located in midtown 

5. Fins and feathers handstown. 

Places you should hit up: 

Breakfast club- chicken and waffles and grits. Hands down the best chicken in town. Must go early and if u can during the week. It’s worth the wait and usually goes quickly. 

Izakawa for authentic Japanese tapas. I recommend the beef udon. It’s fantastic 

Flying saucer for pie

Craft pita for their chicken wrap- trust me it’s amazing. I order it every week.

 

Tina Sookasem Delcamp

Thien Thanh is definitely best for banh cuon. Personally my favorite for tex/mex is Pappasitos. For Southern I suggest Killen's Heights

 

Noura Zahra

Best bbq is truth bbq! If you go on Saturday get there early for the beef rib!

 

David Lim

Pit Room for BBQ that’s a fun atmosphere. 

Still love Cali in mid-town but I’m super loyal.

Sushi for me is always Kata Robata but with family we like Izakaya Wa.

In the end, there are so many solid options that should not disappoint that’s really about how far you want to drive for the “best”. Have a great one.

 

Isaiah Ng

1) nam giao

2) irmas or el tiemp

3) pit room 

4) Soto (omakase), Kata for variety/price 

5) Mia’s table

 

Lisa Davis Baldon

TexMex- Los Tios or Teotihuacan

Bbq-killen’s or Truth bbq

Sushi-kata robata

Southern- the barbecue Inn or Killens’s in the Heights

 

Hobi Nguyen

Blood Brothers BBQ is my favorite!

 

Diane Meschwitz Sebesta

2). Chavez Mexican cafe on Gessner near Kempwood

5) southern—-Mel’s Country Cafe in Tomball

 

Jennie Bui McCoy

1) Best Vietnamese restaurant for banh cuon? 

Banh Cuon Hoa or Thien Thang in our Chinatown area

Best Vietnamese restaurant in general?

Huynh (near our soccer stadium in EaDo

2) Best TexMex place?

Irma’s in downtown or I also love Pico’s, or Escalantes 

3) Best barbecue? 

Killien’s, Gatlin’s, Pinkerton’s or Truth BBQ

4) Best sushi place?

Hands down, Kata Robata. However, check out Handies Douzo for some incredible crispy hand rolls.

5) Best 'southern' food? 

Lucille’s - it is a 2022 James Beard finalist. Definitely try their fried green tomatoes with goat cheese

 

Curtis Neason

I dont know if these are the best, but they are our favorites:

1) Huynh near downtown or Pho Dien in Asia Town specifically for pho

2) Pappasitos any location

3) Blood Bros in Bellaire

4) Kata Robata

5) Eunice

 

Jessica Cui Ragain

BBQ-Killens or Pit Room. Highly recommend their beef ribs and pork belly

TexMex-Papasitos or El Tiempo

 

Thai Luu

1) Best Vietnamese restaurant for banh cuon?

Thiên Thanh and Banh Cuon Hoa #2 is a good altenative.

Best Vietnamese restaurant in general?

Tay Do for family style, kim son for their vietnamese buffet, and Dakao. My personal favorite because of the menu size.

2) Best TexMex place?

Pappasitos, Gringos, Ninfas on Navigation rd.

3) Best barbecue? I like brisket best

Killens bbq in Pearland, Blood Brothers, Corkscrew, even Rudy's is good for a chain restaurant. 

4) Best sushi place?

Soto, MF, Uchi, Kata Robata

5) Best 'southern' food? 

Killen’s on 101 Heights Blvd, Houston, TX, Max's Wine dive, Lucille's

 

Marcus Bui Vo

1) Thien Thanh has good flavor but sometimes I get stale cold banh cuon. Try Chez Beignets instead

2) This is incredibly abundant and hard to go wrong. Just high review + convenient to your location

3) Pit room for a mild, solid bbq and proximity to town. Killen’s for a legendary spot. (Order point/fatty brisket and beef ribs)

4) Matsu sushi for quality + affordable

Kata Robata for a more premium experience. Hidden spots: sushi Miyagi, Teppay sushi

5) Turkey leg hut and Breakfast Klub for an authentic, iconic experience

 

Hoang Vu

- thiên thành

- el tiempo / picos / Irma’s / superica all good

- truth bbq (or killens in pearland)

- kata robata

 

Nathan Ang

1. Thiên Thanh

2. Lopez Mexican Restaurant, which is Mattress Mack's favorite.

3. Gatlin's Barbecue

5. Grace's

 

Luis Sandoval

As a Texican ...for #2. I HIGHLY recommend La Mexicana

La Mexicana

(713) 521-0963

 

 

Jeff Heaviside

1) Thienh Thanh 

2) Candentes

3) Blood Bros

4) Kata Robata 

5) Fins & Feathers

 

Joseph Diosana

Best Viet Cajun crawfish Yummy Seafood and Oyster Barat the new Asian Town Center

 

Vina Nguyen

Chez Beignet in bellaire has best banh cuon only on Sunday!

 

Jenny Ong

Esther’s for soul food

 

Bach Hoang

Khang Vietnamese Sandwich Cafe for one of the best Vietnamese Sandwiches in town!! 

 

Bill Burge

1 Huynh

2 Ninfa’s on Navigation

3 Truth BBQ

4 Kata Robata

5 Lucille’s or Killen’s

 

John Bangilan

1. Kim Son dinner buffet and order off menu if they don’t offer something you want

2. Los Tios- Beechnut location 

3. Killen’s-Pearland

4. 

5. Just Oxtail Soul Food -Reed Rd.

 

Shannon Cui

There’s Turkey Leg Hut and the Breakfast Klub is THE BEST southern breakfast you must go

 

Lucy Nguyen

1) thien Thanh (cash only!)

2) lupe tortilla

3) truth bbq or j bar m! They sell out fast

4) Kata robata, Handies, kokoro

5) grace’s

 

Brandon Burnett

1)Thien Thanh

2) El Gallo. Not fancy, but so good 

3) Truth BBQ

4) MF Sushi

5) Aunt Bill's in Katy

 

Lindsay Nguyen

Barbecue place: Corkscrew BBQ in Old Town Spring, come early the wait is absolutely worth it.

 

Trang Nguyen

1) Best Vietnamese restaurant for banh cuon? 

Quan ong tre - they make fresh banh cuon in front of you just like how they do in Vietnam 

or Thien Thanh - more popular option but not as fresh 

Best Vietnamese restaurant in general? 

We have different dishes for each restaurant - hard to pick one but if you just want general stuff - Dakao has a lot of options

 

Jade Jackson Jiro

1. Thien Thanh for banh cuon! Best vietnamese really depends on what you're looking for - Huynh is best for shaking beef and Pho Dien is great for pho. You can't go wrong with Pho Saigon (Katy) for lemongrass pork with rice.

2. El Tiempo (Washington location), Pappasitos, or Lupe Tortilla (the original at HWY 6 and I-10). You won't go wrong with beef fajitas. 

3. For taste and value, you absolutely can't be Rudy's BBQ...AND their bbq sauce is NOT sweet, which I appreciate. Ask for extra moist brisket and you can't go wrong! If you're looking for ribs though, I'd recommend Pinkerton's.

4. Izakaya Wa, Aka Sushi, or Kata Robata

5. Mia's Table, Pappy's....and this will be a controversial opinion but I love Luby's

 

Jade Jackson Jiro

1. Thien Thanh for banh cuon! Best vietnamese really depends on what you're looking for - Huynh is best for shaking beef and Pho Dien is great for pho. You can't go wrong with Pho Saigon (Katy) for lemongrass pork with rice.

2. El Tiempo (Washington location), Pappasitos, or Lupe Tortilla (the original at HWY 6 and I-10). You won't go wrong with beef fajitas. 

3. For taste and value, you absolutely can't be Rudy's BBQ...AND their bbq sauce is NOT sweet, which I appreciate. Ask for extra moist brisket and you can't go wrong! If you're looking for ribs though, I'd recommend Pinkerton's.

4. Izakaya Wa, Aka Sushi, or Kata Robata

5. Mia's Table, Pappy's....and this will be a controversial opinion but I love Luby's.

Bonus: Buff Burger has a phenomenal burger. Ask for the truffle burger - it's not ok the menu anymore, but you can still get it.

 

PingPing L Nguyen

Can we please trade answers? Ill be in London for New Years. 

1. Shepherds pie

2. Fish n chips

3. Indian

4. Fancy for NYE dinner

5. High noon Tea, biscuits, finger sandwiches

6. Anything else? 

1) Best Vietnamese restaurant for banh cuon? Best Vietnamese restaurant in general? Banh Cuốn Thiên Thanh. Tây Đô 

2) Best TexMex place? Chuys

3) Best barbecue? I like brisket best. Killens bbq

4) Best sushi place? Kata Robata. Casual-Keepers

5) Best 'southern' food? Like grits and mac and cheese, etc, southern comfort food - Cleburnes

Any suggestions, greatly appreciated! Thanks, K

- Brazilian steakhouse- chama guacha

- steakhouse - steak48

- indian - aga's

- hotpot at HotPot City or Hai Dai Lo

- kim son buffet on a fri/sat

- bo 7 mon at Saigon Pagolac

- dessert at Snowy Village, Nu Cafe or MeetFresh

- soul food - mikis soul food

- ice cream at Marble Slab

 

Will Levine

1) Thien Thanh 

2) Candente 

3) Roegels Barbecue Co or Pit Room

4) Kata Robata

 

Stevie Vu


Though it can be an eye of the beholder opinion on what each person may consider "the best", here are some picks depending on part of town - happy welcome back home exploring! 🙌

1) Vietnamese restaurant for banh cuon? Banh Cuon Thien ThanhThien An SandwichesHuynh RestaurantBanh Cuốn HoaNam Giao (also try their banh beo and banh bot loc)

Vietnamese restaurant in general? This is a tough one depending on what particular dish you're craving for: Vietnam CoastMoon RabbitDAKAO Restaurant & BarSaigon PagolacTay Do RestaurantCali Sandwich & Fast FoodKim Son RestaurantMai's Restaurant

2) TexMex place? The Original Ninfa's on NavigationIrma's OriginalLa Guadalupana Cafe and Bakery, La Tapatia; Spanish Village Restaurant

3) Barbecue? Blood Bros. BBQThe Pit RoomPinkerton's BarbecuekhoibarbecuehoustonTruth BBQKillen's BBQ

4) Sushi place? Kata Robata Sushi + GrillIzakaya Wa (Memorial); 5KinokawaAya SushiTobiuo Sushi & BarNippon Japanese Restaurant

5) Southern food? Ouisie's Table Restaurant, Bar and GardensGrace'sState of Grace RestaurantLucille'sField & Tides

 

Polina Lu

Teppay sushi is great. Also if you’re looking for a restaurant that is always open, try Cafe 101. The food is very authentic while not on your list though. Boba drinks are authentic and kind of affordable in Asian town, too.