April 19, 2021
January 1, 2021
Is it possible? I'm tempted to call this the greatest Tex Mex combo plate in Texas. But there are too many restaurants vying for that title. So, if I call it the 2nd greatest combo plate in Texas, I'm probably safe. But seriously, it was perfect. Big scoop of delicious guacamole.
Perfectly realized Mexican rice (with just the right hint of cumin). Excellent frijoles refritos (made with manteca). A mild and perfectly seasoned chili gravy covering cheesy enchiladas.
And, as you'll see from the photos, they make their own leche quemada, and it is chock full of pecans.
Highly recommended. It's worth the road trip. You can have fun visiting all of the antique shops on Main Street and then having your terrific Tex Mex lunch.
The Google Map (Click on any of these in the sidebar to get full address)
Favorite 2nd Hand Stores in Houston
Screenshot of the map:
A. Chiba Hot Pot
12426 FM 1960 W
B. Chongqing Chicken Pot
9393 Bellaire Blvd.
C. Happy Lamb
5901 Westheimer and 8848 Bellaire Blvd.
D. Hot Pot City (one of my all time favorites!)
8300 W Sam Houston Pkwy.
E. Karp Asian Bistro
1223 Grand West Blvd (Katy)
F. Malubian Hot Pot
9102 Bellaire Blvd.
G. Niu Jiao Jian Hot Pot
9715 Bellaire Blvd.
H. One Hot Pot and Grill
12148 Bellaire Blvd.
I. Shabu House
9889 Bellaire Blvd.
J. Shabu Squared
5840 W Sam Houston Pkwy.
K. Shabu Zone Hot Pot Restaurant
11201 Bellaire Blvd.
L. Sinh Sinh
9788 Bellaire Blvd.
M. Tan Tan
N. Tasty Point
9110 Bellaire Blvd.
O. Tasty Pot Hot Pot (Taiwanese)
9328 Bellaire Blvd.
P. XiaoLongKan Chinese Hot Pot
9600 Bellaire Blvd.
This has quickly become one of Michael and my favorite places for lunch. I was able to introduce it to my wife recently. Along with the absolutely wonderful fried dumplings, I can recommend their signature dish, the knife cut noodle soup (long noodles, chicken broth, a few dumplings, and topped with ground pork). She had the bulgogi as an entree, originally tempted to maybe try the bulgogi pancake or the kimchi pancake. You really can't go wrong with anything on the menu here.
The kimchi is so fresh tasting and not overly fermented.
A request went out recently for chicken fried steak recommendations in Houston (and the greater Houston area) and here were the responses:
Barbecue Inn (on Crosstimbers)
Hickory Hollow (now only on Fallbrook; though, I've had really tough and gristle laden steaks there at times)
Hughies (in the Heights)
Jay's Cafe (in Needville; a personal favorite of mine)
Jax Bar and Grill (on Shepherd)
Killen's (the new one on Heights Blvd.)
La Lucha (in the Heights)
Lola (in the Heights)Mel's Country Cafe (up in Tomball)
Mia's Table (got a lot of recommendations)
Preslee's Southern Cooking (in the Heights)
Puffabelly's (in Old Town Spring)
Rainbow Lodge (on Sunday nights)
The Branch (in Spring Branch)
For me, one of my favorite places for chicken fried steak is in Moulton, Texas, at Kloesel's Steakhouse. I've never experienced a steak there with the gristle or tough bits that one is prone to find in a steak at other places. It's always been terrific. And, coming with a soup, salad, and side, it is a bargain. Here are some photos.
Friend Michael Shum writes: "
Dumplings are Northern China’s specialty. A friend from Beijing highly recommends this place that specializes in Northern Cuisine, especially Dumplings.
My road trip to Hempstead, Texas, a short drive out west of Houston on 290 and a fun half-day trip. Cause sometimes you just gotta drive somewhere, right?
It was time to pick up some new blue jeans and that meant an excuse to go to the VF Outlet in Hempstead. JanSport, Nautica, Wrangler, Lee, and other brands of clothing under the VF Corporation banner at really incredible prices.
So I decided to explore Hempstead a little today for this and that.
My first stop was to check out a barbecue place that, in the past, had always been sold out by the time I was passing through the area. I was able to confirm that they'd be open at 11 for sure. So on my way over there I see a meat market called Killian's and I pop in to buy some locally produced, smoked sausages, jerky, and bacon.
The next stop was the downtown McDonald's. I'd posted about this before as on several occasions I've had really spectacular coffee there. Leading me to wonder if Hempstead municipal water is perfect for brewing coffee or if McDonald's does some filtering of the water for their location. I still don't know, as the staff at the McD couldn't tell me.
My next stop was also on Main Street. The Breakfast Paradise interior is like an old 50's small town café. Which it is lol.
I had a coffee and a couple of pancakes and some locals recommended Erick's Mexican Restaurant when I asked them what their favorite Mexican restaurant was. It was starting to look like I'd be doing some tasting at several places around town and doggie bagging the rest.
VF Outlet was closed! Closed up tight. No longer open. I'll miss it.
I drove out to take some photos at Frazier's Concrete Heaven, the famous place for statuary of every kind imaginable and a Hempstead landmark.
But first a stop at the other Hempstead landmark, Dilorio's Fruit and Vegetable Market. Hempstead is famous for its watermelons. Especially one called the Black Diamond. Dilorio's did not disappoint and I picked up bags of fresh produce.
With some time to kill before lunch at 11, I drove over to Chappell Hill, but everything was closed on Main Street, it being the middle of the week. Chappell Hill Sausage Company was open but I didn't grab any on this trip.
Back to Hempstead, to the main event at First Class Barbecue, to pick up a 1/2 pound of brisket and sample their house special chopped brisket sandwich topped with macaroni and cheese!
And then, another stop at Killian's to pick up a 1/2 pound of their brisket.
And on to lunch at Erick's. I had the cheese enchilada lunch plate with rice and beans and it was classic Tex Mex.
Across the street from them is a pretty decent resale shop. I didn't find anything today but it's always fun to look. 'Cause you never know...
And then, back to Houston. I had left a around 8 and was back by 2. With a trunk full of 'cue and sausage. Hempstead is a cool little town. A little bit under the radar. There's a Hempstead Fried Chicken place I haven't tried. And there's a Brookshire Brothers Grocery where you can pick up their well respected fried chicken or a bad of their seasoned flour to make your own at home. I also ended up at the Hempstead Walmart, which is where I found my blue jeans!