Thursday, February 28, 2013

The Counter

For a gourmet burger, we like to go to The Counter.  
You sit down, they give you a clip board and you get to design your own burger.  You get 1/3 lb, 2/3 lb, or if you're really hungry, 1 lb.
We got the Fifty/Fifty - which was half sweet potato fries and french fries.  You can mix it with onion strings, with fries or with sweet potato fries.
Finally, here's my burger!  I got the 1/3 pounder, with red onion, and saute mushroom.  I had the chipotle aioli sauce on the side and it adds a nice kick to the burger.

What we like about this place is that they offer alot of gluten free options.  The bun is actually gluten free, and you can customize everything your way.  Forget about Burger King, this is truly how you get it your way.  Their beef is hormone and antibiotic free, and don't forget too that not only that they have yummy milkshake, they have beer and some liquor drinks too.  Make a night out of it.

The Counter
4601 Washington Ave
Houston, TX 77007

Wednesday, February 27, 2013


It's been a while since I've been to Blu in Sugarland, so when a friend asked where to go brunch, I did not hesitate going back to Blu.
It was beautiful out and they have a live jazz combo at the patio.
I was surprised to see the choices at brunch somewhat limited.
I got the sliders, which comes with tons of fries.  It was nice and kobe beef, and it has onions and melted cheese. 
For dessert, we got the pistachio ice cream.  Look how cute that they gave you a pinwheel cookie.

I like their weekday menu, so I was surprised that brunch was so standard.  One thing I love about Blu is that they have great innovative fusion menu and great tasting food.  While brunch tasted good, I was hoping some of their fusion shows up too.  They do have great brunch cocktail available.

Sugarland Town Square
2248 Texas Dr.
Sugarland, TX 77479

Tuesday, February 26, 2013

House of Bowls

Sometimes I see other people's online photos and I get inspired to get them, and I mean NOW!

So we went to House of Bowls in Sharpstown.
We got the Chinese Sausage Fried Rice.
Then we have Shanghai Fried Noodles - totally yum!
Duck veggie, which is really dried duck cooked with Chinese broccoli, also yum.

Normally, for Hong Kong/Cantonese style food, I'd go for HK Cafe, but every so often, I needed something off beat and yummy, I'd go to HOB.  Very much Cantonese style, but good service and fast!  We ordered our food and 5 mins later, food appears!  Pricing is very reasonable too!

House of Bowls
6650 Corporate Dr
Houston, TX 77036

Monday, February 25, 2013

Eatsie Boys - Mmmonstrose Cafe

Ever since Eatsie Boys went into brick and mortar store, I haven't had a chance to eat their food.
They took over the old Kraftsmen Bakery next to Black Lab on Montrose.
I ordered the Matzah Pho, it's definitely not your usual pho.  The service is cute, but the soup base doesn't have much flavor, the vermicelli is too doughy, and I'm not sure if it was me until I talked to my friend and she felt the same too.
I tried the matzah and it also doesn't have flavor.  :(
Next we have the Sabotage sandwich.  They have pork au jus, but the flavor didn't seem to sip thru.  The braised green today was kale, and the provolone melted at the bottom was nice.  But it's tough that the entire plate doesn't have as much flavors as promised.  Where is that damn Pork Snuggie??? Oh they sold out that day.  Sad!
Luckily the ice cream redeemed the meal, I had the Triple Trouble, which is dulce de leche, chocolate, mixed with toffee.  That was yummy.

Parking is available in the garage, take your ticket and ask for a token for exiting the garage.  Come a little before the lunch rush.  We did and lucky that we did because the line was lining outside the door.  Another thing you should try is their homemade lemonade, it was yummy!  The only thing missing this trip is my pork snuggie... I miss you!

Eatsie Boys
They do cater!
4100 Montrose
Ste C
Houston, TX 77006

Friday, February 22, 2013

Petite Sweet

For my friend's birthday, instead of a cake, we went for Petite Sweet so everyone can get whatever they want.
I got the Pistachio & Chocolate macarons.  I just love that their pistachio filling has real pistachios in it.  The chocolate filling is rich and full.

I am disappointed that lately when I went to Petite Sweet, the flavor choices has become less and less available.  One of the attraction of going there is their fillings are well done, and the variety available at any given time.  While I understand economically that's not feasible, the limitation also is a turn off.  While the once perfect shell was the macs to dreamed of, nowadays it's a hit or miss.  Some days you take a bite and the shell cracks and fall apart.  If you get them fresh enough, it's perfect.  Keep up with the quality!!!!

Petite Sweet
2700 W. Alabama St.
Houston, TX 77098

Thursday, February 21, 2013

Flora & Muse

It's really rear that I get to be a lady who lunch, little to say to even have time to have afternoon tea...
Lucky for us, Flora & Muse has afternoon tea during the week.  They have a tea set for 2 for $30.  Of course it comes in a set.  I was hoping they have some fancy tea, but instead, they came over with a box of tea to choose from... ok, Jasmine it is.
The tea set comes in 2 tiers.  The top tier is dessert, which is common.

The top tier has peanut butter cookie with jam (that was unusual and confuse my taste buds), poppy seed muffin (which is exactly what you think it is), and chocolate dipped sugar cookie (yummy)!
The bottom tier has all the savory sandwiches.  And as you can see, they are tiny and finger size.
They have 2 of everything, on this corner they have Curry Chicken Salad sandwich (left), and Roast Beef & Cheese sandwich.
Here you have Smoked Salmon brochette (center), Turkey & Lettuce sandwich (right), and Cucumber & Tomato sandwich (back).

I liked the sugar cookie, the curry chicken was a surprise, but what was the true surprise was the mini bread that the sandwiches came in.  The bread tasted like a the Brazilian Cheese Bread, but I'm sure it's not.  I guess overall, I was expecting because of their patisserie that these tea set would've been better.  In a way that they use their kitchen to do more creative dessert, or have a little scone.  Scones goes with tea so well...

Flora and Muse only serve tea during the week from 2p - 5p.  You don't need to have a reservation, just let the server know you're here for the tea set, and they'll do the rest.  In terms of parking, if you park right in front of store fronts, expect to pay for parking.  $1.50 for 30 mins, $3 for 1 hr, or $15 for 5 hours.  Those are your options, and the parking machines do accept credit cards and cash.

Flore & Muse
12860 Queensbury Ln
Ste 143,
Houston, TX 77024

Wednesday, February 20, 2013


I actually work really close to 51Fifteen, but since I last review it was back in October, I'd figured it's time to share some pics and talk about their food again.
I have to say that they were not very friendly to people who observe Lent, my co-worker was only able to choose the Smoked Salmon Omelet or Shrimp Penne Pasta, so he got pasta.  Looks like they were pretty generous with the shrimp, I tasted the sauce, it's pretty good.  Too bad I don't do shrimp or pasta. Maybe another time.
I ordered the braised brisket sandwich, I just ate it without bread.  That was a little disappointed because you can tell they froze the brisket and didn't defrost it very well.  I say that because part of the brisket were hard and dried and just different texture than the other parts of the brisket.  But the fries were good.  

Again, I go straight to the bar for the Associate menu and price, and you're welcome to check w/ the bartender if there's any special that day.  Otherwise, the laminated menu does have tons to choose from.  Again, it's $10 (tax included) plus $1.85 tip.  Drink is included.  I saw neighbor asked for bread basket, and that you do have to ask for but doesn't cost more.

Insides Saks Fifth Ave
5115 Westheimer Rd.
Houston, TX

Tuesday, February 19, 2013

Corner Table

For a birthday dinner we went back to Corner Table.  Tip about that place, there are parking across the street and down the street, but be smart and read signs.  Otherwise, they do have a valet for the compound.
We ordered the Paleo Buffalo Chicken Wings.   They battered it with almond meal and fried it.  It is spicy and they do have the blue cheese dip to counter act the spiciness   
Out of curiosity, I ordered the Paleo Chicken Enchiladas.  I had high hopes for it, but too bad it wasn't for me.  They used coconut flour to make the tortilla, the chicken mixed with the tomato and cilantro puree very well, just that the coconut flour is sweet and it just confuses my palette.  The chicken with the sauce was great, though.
The dish came with a side of veggies.  As you can see, they have asparagus, grilled zucchini, carrots, broccoli, and that mashed up bit is not potato, that was cauliflower.  This time it also confuses me because the spices used on it isn't what I had expected to go with the cauliflower.

At night it does feel much more upscale, and it is still a good upscale gluten free choice.  The GM is super friendly, they have a sommelier on site and has wide array of wine to impress you.  I'm sure once the 2 bars in the complex opens up, you'll get even a wider arrange of drinks available to you.

Corner Table
2736 Virginia Street
Houston, TX 77098
dinner reservation is recommended, but we've never had issue getting a table.

Monday, February 18, 2013

Ruggle's Green

For gluten free 'fast food', aside from Elevation Burger, your other best bet is probably Ruggles Green.  
This round I got their Kobe Burger with Swiss cheese and on gluten free buns.   There's tons of decisions to be made just ordering a burger; do you want lettuce, tomato, pickle, mayo, ketchup, greens, Swiss or American or mozzarella cheese, fruit, fries, sweet potato fries, or quinoa salad.  Told you, tons of decisions to make.... 

Anyway, burger with Swiss, greens and tomatoes on gf bun with sweet potato fries.  I will say that they are super generous with the fries because it's pretty much the entire plate.  The burger is good and juicy, the buns were a tad dry and too toasted, so it's dry against meat.  The mayo is their peach chipotle mayo sauce, so it has a little kick to it... but still pretty good.

Ruggles Green
2311 W. Alabama
Houston, TX 77098

Friday, February 15, 2013

Macaron by Patisse

I've been driving by River Oaks and peeking at the Macaron sign... when are they going to open?
Well, Macaron by Patisse opened quietly a little shy of 2 weeks ago.
The posh decor definitely matches the posh location, but the owner is not stuck up at all.  She's the opposite of snobbery, she was more than friendly and made sure that we know what flavors are available, what type of tea they serve and that they are fair trade.
I couldn't resist the front window display, the macaron tower is adorable but park next to a mini Eiffel Tower, they just stole my heart.
Don't know if you can see that each of the macarons have a bit of glimmer on top.  So pretty.  And yes, we went late in the day and they're pretty much sold out.  Wow.
We got: Rose, Lavender, Hot Cinnamon, Coco Noir (coconut with dark chocolate), Blueberry Vanilla Bean.
You see the glimmer?  It's all pretty.  What impressed me, aside from the color and shiny tops, it's that they have vanilla bean in the shells.  That's done well.
We asked, and they used the French method.  And to be honest, once you mastered it, it can be super stable.  I know alot of advocate out there for the Italian method, because you can mass produce with stable results, but like I said, French method is not as particular once you master them well.
You bite into it, and it's nice and soft.  YUM!

Like I said the owner was more than friendly.  She was saying what inspired her to open this macaron shop is that she has not found a truly good macaron shop.  While I do agree that there's a need for it but I wouldn't say they're that hard to find.  Some places, she was saying froze their macs, so they made theirs fresh daily.

What I can appreciate is that they choose to have different flavors.  Which is more than what I can say about alot of places around town.  They only produce what sells, which I know makes business sense, but one of the great thing about macarons is that you have the liberty to play with the flavors both in the shells and in the flavors in between.  You can tell they did their research and made sure the ganache is right or the mascarpone is right.  I totally appreciate the thoughtfulness that was put into the macarons.  I'll definitely come back, like you have to twist my arm.  ;)

Macaron by Patisse
2033 W. Gray
River Oaks Shopping Center @ Shepherd
Houston, TX 77019

also join their FB page for more recent updates:

Thursday, February 14, 2013

Little Sheep Mongolian Hot Pot

For cool wintery like weather, there's nothing like a good hot pot.
I've been to the location on Westheimer & Fountainview, but this is my first time going to the Sharpstown location.  
We asked for half and half soup base, which means with the original soup and their spicy soup base.  This is no ordinary soup base, each sides have herb and broth.  The combo is said to have medicinal benefits.  

Each sides comes with Search and Rescue spoons, so as things disappeared in the soup, you can use one to search for it, the other one to grab it and bring up some soup too.
We ordered a dish of lamb thinly cut.  
Veggies and sides: we had spinach, bok choy, fish dumplings, squid, potato, turnip, shiitake and enoki mushrooms, corn, vermicelli, tofu, squid balls and fish balls... yes, I don't know how to explain it, but I grew up with them and they're good... so go try it!
Thinly sliced beef, they also have a big plate of ribeye.
Red bean and yam pancakes, it's pretty tasty.

The main thing about cooking and eating is that make sure you understands what food looks like when they are cooked.  A great tip I learned from my friends is that you can order half orders, that way you can try more if you have a bigger group, or you'll have the appropriate portion size for a small group.

Something I also learned is that the Westheimer location only takes reservations for 6pm and 8pm seatings.  But Sharpstown location is more flexible.  I found that the server and space is better in the Westheimer locations than the Sharpstown location.  The seating in the Sharpstown location is tight, and patrons are bumping into each other with their seats.  And on top of that, in the Sharpstown location, you have to go to a station to get your own sauce to go with the hotpot, versus the Westheimer location will charge you 50cents for them but they'll keep bringing you heaps of them.  Go see it for yourself.

Little Sheep Hot Pot
Sharpstown location
8488 Bellaire Blvd
Houston, TX 77036

Wednesday, February 13, 2013

Kata Robata

It's been a while since we went sushi, so it was time to remedy that!
In comes Kata!
We like sitting at the Sushi Bar, with company like these, how can you not?  LOL
I ordered the Kobe Beef Taco, nice presentation, huh?
Closer look: we have the beef, little slices of mango, avocado, cherry tomato, cilantro, chili threads, onion.  All those flavors together, the taste it tight!  The corn torilla, you can tell it's made in house.  First, it's because it's tiny, the other is also full of flavors, somebody is doing something right there.
Here we have the real King Crab California Roll, that cost more than the normal California Roll, but the fresh crab meat is totally worth it!  I totally recommend having that.  Even if you don't want to spend the money in that, just try it once and compare for yourself.  It'll change your mind too.

Kata Robata
3600 Kirby Dr.
Suite H
Houston, TX 77098

Tuesday, February 12, 2013


We went to Brio for a birthday dinner, and who knew that they are quite popular on weekend.  Highly recommend reservations if you plan on going during prime meal times.
The Pasta Brio has chicken, mushroom, and penne pasta.  What I love is their sauce.  For some reason, their corn-based pasta, you really can't tell the corn, but the ones at Maggiano's  is very apparent with the corn flavors.  But you can go and try it out for yourself.

Last time I was here, they let us taste a wide array of dishes to taste, one thing I didn't get to try is their gluten free pasta.  So this time, I ordered the Pasta Brio but gluten free version.  If you want to see their gluten free menu, ask the hostess or your server they do have a nice list separated from the main menu.

(River Oaks)
3029 Kirby Dr.
Houston, TX 77098

Monday, February 11, 2013

Fat Bao

Don't know if you heard, but bao is in!
Fat Bao is just that simple, bao!  They have variety of savory baos and some sweet ones as well.  They got some wonderful sides, like the Fat Cauli which is fried cauliflower with curry spice.
Let's talk about what I got:  of course I got the Pork Belly bao (right), which has braised shredded pork, with their homemade hoisin sauce.  They have some picked kimchi type stuff at the bottom but it must've been too fresh because the taste hasn't soaked all the way in.

The left bao was the Peking Duck bao, it's like a reminder of what you get from Chinatown where you have the entire duck and you squeeze the pieces in there yourself.  Except, instead of the whole duck, this is all made ready for you to bite into.  Again, they have their hoisin sauce, and the cucumber made it nice and crunchy even if you didn't get enough skin from the duck.  

It's very popular for a quick dinner spot, you walk up, check out their menu, place the order and they will bring you the baos.  Normally, 1 or 2 will do it for me, but if you're hungry, try them all.  Also, check out their Facebook page, because that's where they have their menu listed.  Though, always check out the board when you arrive, they update that more often.  They also have a lunch special, 2 baos, fries, salad, and soda for $9.25, or 3 baos with fries, salad, soda for $12.25.  Go check them out!

Fat Bao
3419 Kirby Dr. 
(at Richmond)
Houston, TX 

Thursday, February 7, 2013

Tiny No. 5

Went for a quick brunch at Tiny's No. 5.  We like going there because the line is not as long as it is at Tiny Boxwood.  On a good day, the line is short and you can get a nice table outside to enjoy the sun.
When I got there, I usually get their Migas.  I don't know what the attraction is, but ever since I had tried it in Austin, wherever I can find them in Houston, I have to order it.  Hoping to recreate the taste I enjoyed so much from Austin.

This Migas is nice and have a kick to it.  So this has scrambled eggs with sausage mixed in with green salsa verde on top.  That salsa was zingy, and definitely spice things up.  Grab a sangria while you're at it, it's early but it's too good to pass up!  Of course, they make a bunch of kick butt latte too.  

Tiny No.5
3636 Rice Blvd 
in West U