Thursday, May 30, 2013

Ruggles Green

So for dinner al dente, we went back to Ruggles Green for their pizza.
Sadly, the Natural Roasted Chicken Pizza was a bit disappointing.  I doubt it's because there's no tomato sauce, the chicken is a bit dry, and the sun dried tomato isn't as flavorful as I had hoped.  The onions was good though...
Here's the ham and swiss and brie cheese.  I liked the taste of it, but then I wasn't supposed to have brie, so...  The taste is good, and definitely go with the sweet potato fries. 

I am never disappointed with their sandwiches, but this pizza was definitely not up to the Ruggles par.  I think I'll stick with the other ones.  Was hoping the natural chicken pizza be a good gluten free pizza alternative, but unfortunately, it didn't make the grade.    

Ruggles Green
2311 W. Alabama
Houston, TX 

Wednesday, May 29, 2013


I realized I haven't been back to Kobecue for quite some time, so for a quickie good meal, I stopped by.
Watch out for parking in the area, they meant it when they say they will tow, so be careful where you park.
For appetizer, I had fried tofu, it had scallions and yummy sauce on top.
For main course, this is the Spicy Pork Hot Stone Bowl.  I know you can't see it, but the egg had some roe, and the chili pepper, which you see, but there are pork underneath with veggie.  Of course, you are to mix it all up and all the spices, veggie, rice, and egg, into a delicious mix.  Don't forget the bowl is hot, so it'll be piping hot when you get it.

I love their food, and never tired of their kimchi mixed with everything.  The spice is always spiced to the right flavor for me.  I'm lovin' it.

3957 Richmond Ave
at Weslayan
Houston, TX 77027

Tuesday, May 28, 2013

Fat Bao

When I saw on Fat Bao's Facebook page that they have ramen, and I have no dinner plans, I made my way there.
Follow them on their FB page, because ramen is not available every night.
The Bao, however, are always available there.  For an appetizer, I had the Bulgogi Bao, which has kimchi, beef ribeye and their in house made sauce. 
This is their version of the Tonkotsu.  Lovely broth, and you see the pork, there's mushroom, and egg.  For $1 extra, you can get kimchi, another egg, or more pork for $2.  I love that it the meat and the broth has this harmony.  The noodles are the egg ramen, seems like been with the soup long enough to give you a nice full picture of the dish.

If you haven't been, you just walk up to the cashier, place your order and they give you a mini construction cone with your number and they bring you your dish.  Ramen is not offered every night, they usually do it on Monday and Wednesday, but it is best to go to their FB page and double check.  Even if you go on a night that they don't sell ramen, their bao's ain't shabby either.  So either way, you will not go home hungry.

Fat Bao
3419 Kirby Dr.
Houston, TX 

Definitely follow them on FB:  

Monday, May 27, 2013


So I saw on Twitter that food truck shows up at Whole Foods at Bellaire, I have to go check them out.
Today's choice was Chi'Lantro (from Austin).  Since I haven't tried them before, I am hungry enough to give them a shot.
You can see they are a Korean/Mexican fusion, the menu is: Taco, Kimchi Fries, Burritos, Quesadillas, Bowls, Hamburger, Fries.
Here we have the spicy fries, it's definitely spicy, because you see they have alot of spices on it.  They give you this 'magic' sauce, which taste a little like mayo mixed with something spicy....
This is their Pork Quesadilla, with bulgogi pork, of course.  I love it because the mix with the cheese, of course, it has kimchi inside to spice things up too.

I find it interesting that this is at least the 3rd Korean/Mexican fusion mix.  Do we really have the population for 3 similar food truck?  Between OhMyGogi, Coreanos, and now Chi'Lantros, not to mention the brick and mortar of Kobecue, does Houston have enough people who are willing to try it, love, and sustain it?  Now mind you, two of the four aforementioned are implants from Austin.  So, not only are the Houstonians compete against each other, they also have to compete with Austinites investing/invading this city.  

How does it measure?  I like their food, just because I appreciate the cross cultural fusion.  Does it stand out?  I think it stand shoulder to shoulder to the others.  OMG will always have a spot in my heart and any Korean/Mexican fusion, I find myself measuring it against them.  I will say that Chi'Lantros can throw in a bit more spice on the kimchi, but it's not bad and the staff are vibrant and great!


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Thursday, May 23, 2013

Sorrel's Sunday night dinner

So I got a gift certificate at Sorrel so I grabbed couple of friends to go dinner.
This is the Pan Roasted chicken with fingerling potato, with spinach.  It came with fries, which are very good.  I can do without the herbed pan jus that was a bit rich.  I think the flavors with the chicken was great just by itself.  

It was weird, the food was good, but on a Sunday night the entire place was empty.  I thought that was strange too that at the entry way at the hostess station, and at a corner, they have a camera showing the kitchen.  Unless you're on Iron Chef or Chopped, camera in the kitchen is boring and not much to look at.  

2202 W. Alabama
Houston, TX

Wednesday, May 22, 2013

Thai Spice

One Saturday just met up with some friends for lunch at Thai Spice in the Heights.
I got the Pad Thai with beef, it was saltier than I remembered, but I was really there for their Thai Tea, which was super good.  And when you sit down, they give you the shrimp flavor crackers, which you don't get anywhere anymore.  

It was nice to get there early on Saturday during lunch time, you get great service and of course, food is hot off the wok.  That is definitely the time to go.

Thai Spice
460 19th Street
Houston, TX 

Tuesday, May 21, 2013

Melange Creperie

Now that I work in the Galleria area, haven't had much chance to go to see Sean for crepe for some times.  So when my watch said 9:50a, it's time to drive down to Montrose to see how long that line is going to be.
As usual, as Sean is still setting up, there were 3 or 4 families already waiting for crepe.  It's alot of people that live in the neighborhood that bring their dogs and their kids down to see Sean and see what creation Sean cooked up.
Since it's not strawberries season, there's no Patty Special to be had.  So instead, we had Nutella, Banana and Walnut.  It was just as good, but just because he had mastered the batter for the crepe, which makes every filling inside tastes good.

My advice about going to see Sean for crepe, go early and bring exact change so he can process your transaction and go back to making crepe faster.  I always bring exact couple bucks for tips and while it's not tradition to tip to proprietor but since he always takes care of us you never feel bad for paying extra.

Melange Creperie
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Monday, May 20, 2013

Hong Kong Food Street

Ran out to lunch with some friends to Hong Kong Food Street, down in Chinatown.
Chinese sausage with Chinese broccoli hot pot.  Look out, it is hot.  I could have this entire pot and it'll be enough.
Chinese Spinach with shrimp paste.  We need some veggie to balance out a bit.
Japanese style beef short ribs on sizzling pan.  It's so yummy, I highly recommend it.
Soy Sauce Tofu and egg, out of all the dishes this is the only one that I was lease impressed.  

I recall when they first opened I was very impressed with their food and their chef.  Since then they have changed couple times over.  Dishes aren't as traditional Cantonese as it was once, doesn't necessary mean it's best, just tasted differently.   I would recommend you go during dinner time, they have soup accompany with your dinner.  

Hong Kong Food Street
They're open from lunch till 2am
9750 Bellaire Blvd.
Houston, TX 77036

Friday, May 17, 2013

Pierrer Herme Les Jardins

As my friends travel the world, the perk is that they brings me back some awesome macarons.
Beautiful packaging for the Garden Collection.
Classy packaging!!!
Great plastic to keep them in place and no crushed.
Yes, I said Fennel.  It's kinda interesting, because you can taste that there's more than lemon, but didn't exactly get to the fennel maybe because it's caramelized.  
I mostly tasted the tartness of the lemon, I read that they also have some anise in there.  It must not have been very much because you can barely taste it.

Pierre Herme

Thursday, May 16, 2013

Muiishi Makirritos

Every other Friday, HEB on Alabama host a mini food truck fest.  
One I've been meaning to try was Muiishi Makirritos.  We were talking to the chef, Matthew Mui when he was still a sushi chef at Soma.  He had told us about his idea when ventured out, and here it is in reality!
Creative menu with nice descriptions, it's a mix of everything.  Talk about the true meaning of fusion, there's a mix of Japanese, Korean, Chinese, and whatever else tastes good.
I had the Bibimbap.
Which had bulgogi, kimchi, oyster mushroom, homemade pickle, with a red mildly spicy sauce.  I liked it on its own without the sauce, but adding it does kick it up a notch.

Muiishi Makirritos
Follow them on Twitter to get the most updated schedule:

Wednesday, May 15, 2013

Kata Robata

You know there's just one of those days where you want some sushi...
It has been a while since I've been having sushi, so for the best, go to Kata.
Of course King Crab California Roll, you can really tell the quality of the meat versus the faux crab.
Ordered the Caribbean Roll with the boiled lobster, granted it's not as good as they originally intended, but it worked for me. 

I can't wait to have sushi again... and you bet I'll be going back.

Kata Robata
3600 Kirby, Ste H
Houston, TX 77098

Tuesday, May 14, 2013

Nippon's Ramen

Haven't been back to Nippon in a while, what better time than to catch up with my friends.
Even on a Sunday, they are busy with lunch.  That's because after church a bunch of Japanese ladies go there after to hang out.  
This is a cold dish of spinach topped with shaved fish.  I love to dip it all together.
Cute saucer they had with their logo on it.  You don't see that much nowadays.
Agadashi Tofu, fried tofu in ponzu sauce, so good...
This is their Tonkotsu ramen, as you can see it's light pork based, it is white and cloudy as described, which are supposed to be a pork broth.  You see the red, that's ginger, and sprouts, there are slices of pork in there, you just can't see it. 

I appreciate that they definitely cooked the noodle and pork in the broth as you can tell the taste goes together.  If not, you can immediately taste the different base and different cooking and was dump together last minute, which was not the case here.  Next time I'm going back for Miso Ramen.
To top off the meal, we ordered some Japanese ice cream, and my favorite, always, is red bean.  Yum!

If you can't find a decent parking on their lot behind the building, meaning no double park.  Park across the street and be careful crossing.  I'm glad I did because I also got out of there quicker than people parked at the lot that can't get in or out, or was blocked by someone double parked.

Because of the size of the space, seating is very limited.  Now that the weather is nice, take advantage of sitting at the patio.  Do make sure you arrive a little before prime time to get a seat, seating fills up fast!

Nippon Restaurant
4464 Montrose Blvd
Houston, TX
Closed Monday!

Monday, May 13, 2013

Ramen in Common

Don't know if you heard about Ramen in Common.  It all started with sushi club members talking about ramen noodles and the mastermind behind the Houston Sushi Club, immediately thought of starting a group for us ramen lovers.
The second event for the Ramen in Common group was a perfect.  Being second event is awesome, because all the kinks from the first event has been worked out.  Yay!
It's at Soma's private area upstairs.  I love that being a member with the club master who's friends with all these Japanese restauranteurs means we always get superb treatment and get special treatment.
Here's our chef Mark Medina at Soma talking about how he improved upon reviews from last event.  Also noted that his method is non-traditional, but his interpretation and what tasted good.
Homemade Trash - which has pickled apples, grapes, pork rind, and fried ginger with sauce to dip in.
This is the 1st serving, we got Seafood Ramen.  It comes in a light seafood & coconut milk broth, but honestly I did not taste any seafood.  The broth has very light taste to it.  As you can see, there's scallop, mussels, and of course ramen nodle.
Here's the Black Bean Ramen, which is beef broth based.  This is one of my favorite, I'm not sure if it's the kimchi and the beef broth mixed well together or because of the short ribs, but either way this is my favorite, bar none.  Oh, and that's tamago, egg custard, like the sushi, on top.
To cleanse our palette, we got some yuzu sorbet with salt and mint.  It does taste fresh and you do feel the cleansing... of course ready for the next course.
Here we have Texas Ramen - the broth with pork based with corn and husk.  It comes with smoked pork belly with the chef's own barbeque sauce.  You see half an egg, fish cakes, and mushrooms.  
For dessert, we got yuzu cheesecake with tangerine sorbet mixed with crushed sesame powder, which comes out like a peanut butter powder once you mix in the berry puree.

I said it before, the black bean is my favorite out of the entire set.  The size and portions are totally perfect.  I do appreciate the creativity and focusing on the taste and what works together, rather than what's been done. 

See, that's the benefit of being part of Ramen in Common, it works like Sushi Club, you sign up for events you want.  You learn about texture, quality, how to evaluate: what's it good and what is different.  Overall, money well spent.

Ramen in Common
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Friday, May 10, 2013

Pistachio Macarons

Another flavor I did for my friend's wedding was Pistachio.  
If you are lucky, you can get some pistachio meal in the bulk aisle in Central Market.  If not, you can easily grind them up, just have to do a very fine ground.  Alot of people use a coffee grinder to get the job done.
I mixed it with the dry ingredients, to give the shells more flavors.
Mix and mix...
Add the dry stuff with the egg whites.
Piped out nicely...
came out nice and pied... no crack!
The filling has white chocolate and the reminder of the pistachio.  So melt the 3 oz of white chocolate with 1/3 cup of heavy cream.  Add a tsp of melted butter, I added a tablespoon of the pistachio meal, mix it all together.  And chilled it overnight, cover it with saran wrap and make sure the wrap kisses the top of the mixture to avoid skin forming.  I piped it with a star tip and it comes out wavy.