Thursday, March 30, 2017

Hong Kong's Cafe

Deviated from my usual breakfast here.
Got the lemon and honey on ice... soothing and refreshing.
And for breakfast, yes, you read correctly, breakfast.  I had ramen noodles (sadly from the package) with satay beef and bok choy.  The satay sauce is really what makes this dish.  It's thick, has a hint of spicy but not really, yet still have some curry flavor to it.  Entire bowl is super hearty.  Quick and fast meal.

What I enjoy is that the customers and owners chit chat and discuss whatever.  There's really a sense of community, even though people don't know each other, but they feel bonded somehow here.  And I like that environment so much.

Hong Kong's Cafe
9108 Bellaire Blvd
Houston, TX 77036

Wednesday, March 29, 2017

House of Pie (Pi)

Been a while since I've been back to House of Pies
We went to breakfast, which is even stranger, most of the time I come here are at night, if not late night.
We sat there and chat thru cups and cups of coffee.  Had to do decaf.  I'm not sure what it is, maybe it's been sitting there for a long time, or the burnt bottom on something, their decaf tasted super diner and delicious.  Very fitting.
I got the Sunshine to try this round.  As you can see, there's tons of food.  Couldn't even finish them.   Eggs, bacon, potato (O'Brien style - aka tator tots), peach (albeit canned), and toast.  Talk about lots and lots of food.

Not too much to comment, these are basic food, as long as you didn't under or over cook them, I'm content.  

I will comment on seating.  As I mentioned before, we usually when it's dark, so it's never been noticeable.  But we were seated the the front, where it was rebuilt after the fire.  And when the sun is rising in the morning, that A/C is not keeping up.  We were super hot in between it coming on, and it was warm enough to say something.  I can only imagine when summer is truly bringing the heat, what that'd be like.  Otherwise, food is good, our service was good, the guy kept making sure we had our coffee (the most important food group).  It was a great experience for a Houston institution.

House of Pies
3112 Kirby Dr
Houston, TX 77098

Tuesday, March 28, 2017


On the way to the Rodeo, saw a new Japanese place in the area.
Curiosity kills the cat, and figured why not, let's see what they've got.  They said that they're even wine bar.
Got the Chicken Fried Noodles (lo mein) to start... It was amazingly good.  
Got a Happy Hour specials: the sashimi of Salmon and Tuna, each order comes with 3pieces, but they are $6 per order.  The nigiri, however were $1.95 each piece, so it was ok.

Overall, the fish quality is neither here nor there.  I could go to the other end of the shopping center (closer to the NRG stadium) and have fresher fish and cheaper Happy Hour at Asahi.  That said, if you want sushi in a pinch, they'll do.  BUT, you really should come back here for the Chinese food.  The chef must used to work at a Chinese restaurant, the flavor is all there, and what we call the wok flavor, they've got it.  If it showed in a little noodle dish, imagine the rest of the rest of the dishes.  So, I'm coming back for Chinese next time.

The place is more bar oriented, so definitely come check that out.  At least the bar decor up-marketed the joint.

8216 Kirby Dr
Houston, TX 77054

Monday, March 27, 2017

Rise No.2

So lucky to get to go to lunch with a new colleague.
She picked French, so I brought her here at Rise
Got the Marshmallow Soup.  So cool to watch them pour the pesto down.
Don't forget to dip the breadstick, the yummiest, cheesiest ever.  Now, don't think I'm having true marshmallow in my soup.  It is actually mini cheese souffle in tomato based soup with pesto on top.  I'm not usually a tomato soup fan, but with this, I'll make an exception, because it is really THAT good.
This time I got the Southwest Chicken Souffle.  I forget how heavy they are, even though everyone makes fun that it's nothing but egg whites.  It's a lot of ingredients and you taste the chunks of chicken.  I was curious because it might be too heavy to rise up, but it does just fine.  They pour some hot sauce on top to give it a taste.  
For dessert, which we really shouldn't have but did anyway... went for the classic Chocolate Souffle.  It was all nice and pretty.  And just in case that's not enough chocolate for you, they also have a little thing of chocolate sauce for your chocolate souffle.  Wow.
They made it very pretty the way they poured.  But let's face it, it wasn't going to last long.  Basically, we hacked into it as soon as she put down the container.  It was delicious and not dry.  Mind you, this was a split, just because it is heavy.

Overall, the service is wonderful, they do aim to educate in case you don't know which to order.  And they do change up the menu since the last I've been here.  They've included more salad and soup selection.  Entire experience was just wonderful.

Rise No.2
1700 Post Oak Blvd
Ste #290
Houston, TX 77056

Thursday, March 23, 2017

Corner Bakery

Went to grab a quick breakfast...
at Corner Bakery, this time out on I-10 and Blalock.
This is a Commuter Croissant, which has eggs, bacon, cheese and tomato.  It's actually a huge breakfast sandwich.  After I had this, I basically skipped lunch.  It's a quick grab and go situation.

I've never been to this location before, but let me tell you, some of the 'regulars' were not too happy as they did not get their coffee fast enough.  I guess if you're really addicted and need it to help you get going, I guess I'd be too.

Corner Bakery
9311 H Katy Freeway
Houston, TX 

Wednesday, March 22, 2017

Junk food at Rodeo

As you go to Rodeo, there are actually plenty of food to choose from.
 We ended up eating at the Carnival part of the park...
... which are all fried bad choices.  We got the Jumbo Corn Dog.  It is basically a foot long corn dog.  I was grateful that the batter they fried it wasn't thick, and made it a tad crispy even.  That was a good thing.

I want you to know that they do have decent food between the Agventure and where the Carnival begin.  There's a row of food vendor that has decent barbecue, burritos, enchiladas, burgers...etc.  There are also Chik-fil-a, and several other vendors inside the NRG Center.  

We got carnival food because I got suckered into buying the Food Card at the pre-sale.  The deal was $20 for $30 worth of food.  But there are strings attached.  You can only use it with the Carnival food vendors, not the vendors at the front row I was telling you about.  And you cannot use the food card with a coupon from your Discount Pack.  Frankly, that's a total scam because the coupon would've been valid had I paid cash, but now somehow it's not valid because I'm paying with a pre-paid food card.  

You can actually bring your own food to the Rodeo.  As you walk, there's no real limitation as to where you have to have their food versus your own.  I've been told that you can sit at the wine bar during the day to enjoy your food, as they are not open until the evening.  But, we found plenty of seating, that wasn't much of an issue.

Tuesday, March 21, 2017


Every time I drive down Kirby from 59 to Richmond, I do reminisce the building where Miyako used to be.
Of course, that building has been leveled and there's no trace of Miyako that was there for over 15 years.  Luckily, they took over one of spots on Washington.  Easy garage parking, for easy access.
Since I came for lunch during the week, I took the bento which came with miso soup and salad.
I got the Beef Teriyaki Bento, but you see how much food that it comes with, right?  I have fried rice, 2 pieces of a roll, my teriyaki beef, potato salad, veggie tempura, and some pickle.  I couldn't even finish my food.  For $8.75, it's thoroughly satisfying for this much food.   They serve lunch from 11-2pm, Monday thru Friday.  Go give them a shot, definitely bang for your buck.

Miyako Sushi Bar
4601 Washington Ave
Ste 150
Houston, TX 77007

Monday, March 20, 2017


Took advantage of a free morning and stop in for a cup of latte.
The parking at Bebidas is awkward, especially when there's a crowd in the morning for the rush.  Just have to watch the signs near by as you park.
Got a Matcha Latte.  It's actually more creamy than Matcha.
Got me a Chorizo Breakfast Taco.  Learned from last time that one taco is plenty.
You got your eggs and chorizos.... nice to have a nice view to sit there and watch the traffic goes by.

Super friendly staff, the taco came out before the coffee this time, but everyone is super nice and working it as quick as they humanly possible.  Fun little spot for a stop!

2606 Edloe Street
Houston, TX 77027

Thursday, March 16, 2017

Melange Creperie

It's been such a long time since I had me some yummy Melange Crepe.
Caught them Eastside Farmers Market on Saturday.  To make sure they are there, you need to follow them on Twitter.  Or if you Tweet at them, they will respond relatively quickly.
Yep, got my Patty Special, which is sweet crepe of Nutella with banana and strawberry.  They did have some interesting savory crepes, but since we were late, some of the ingredients were out.  As usual, they have a great following.  The line is always 5 deep with multiple order per person.  That's just telling you how great they are.  

If you don't want to go out in the open, they are always at the Conservatory (downtown).

Melange Creperie
Eastside Farmers Market
3000 Richmond Ave
Houston, TX 
8am - Noon

Wednesday, March 15, 2017


Went to Caracol for lunch after a very hectic week.
First thing we got was the fried oyster in the chipotle butter sauce.  Oh my, it was as delicious as I remembered it.  So good.  Next time, I'm getting a whole order to myself.
Got the: Tacos de Pescado Estilo Baja, which is crispy fried fish taco  with veggies and chipotle mayo, but there's also some bits of goat cheese to add texture.  It was delicious, especially when you sprinkle some lime juice on top.  The only thing is that I would add a bit of salsa to go along with it.  Otherwise, I was a happy camper.  

Needless to say, I finished the whole thing, no room for much else.  But otherwise, entire meal is top notch, I have not had any bad experience there.  The only thing was the server wasn't very clear on the dish description.  We figured it out eventually, but would've been helpful to make a better decision.  Like I said, nothing is bad there, so nothing to complain about, it's a 'would've been nice' thing.

Don't forget, you can either valet or self park.  Don't feel pressured, even though we valet-ed anyway.

2200 Post Oak Blvd
Ste 160
Houston, TX 77056

Tuesday, March 14, 2017

Bernie's Burger Bus

Lenten Friday... just happen to catch Bernie's post about Lobster Friday, 
perfect timing!
Got the lemonade, not to sweet and not too sour.  Best mix with iced tea for an Arnold Palmer.
Hmmm.... truffle fries... *drool*
Main course: lobster roll, New England style.  The meat is cold and the bun is toasted.  All was done well, top notch.  Haven't had a decent lobster roll in some time.  Personally, I like the real meat chunks than broken up pieces. I also think that my taste bud wanted more butter than mayo and rather it'd warm than cold.  That said, a good lobster roll is hard to come by, if there's a good one, I'm going to try it no matter what. 
This was my Lenten Friday meal.  It was truly a lot of food.  I should've split it in half and take the other half home and not be greedy and get the fries, but they all sounded good together when I was ordering it.

Word got out that Fridays are Lobster Roll Friday, there's tons of people showing up for lunch.  While the weather is nice, sitting out at the patio and enjoy the weather is great too.  Now don't get shocked on the price, because keep in mind, lobster has a market price, so we paid $23.95 for our sandwich, so don't get shocked when you see the ticket at the end of the meal.

Bernie's Burger Bus
5407 Bellaire Blvd
Houston, TX 77401

Monday, March 13, 2017

Jinya Ramen Bar

Went to Ramen with the Mom Friends, totally awesome GNO!
We picked Jinya as a redemption of the bad Nao experience.  Well, now that we have a baseline, it's easy to exceed it.
Started with the fried brussels sprout.  Let me tell you, had they done brussels sprout this way when I was growing up, I'd eat more of it.
Shared the potstickers, pretty good... nice and pan fried.
And edamame, trying to not get filled before the main event!
Piece la resistance!  Tonkotsu Black, which has pork, scallion, seaweed, (full) egg, garlic chips, fried onion, and a dob of spicy sauce.  I like their soup base, it's thick enough for the noodles.  Mix it altogether, nicely taste.  I think I'd like for it to be more texture, but for inside the loop it's good.

We went on a Friday night, early enough but had to wait for good 30 mins.  They were not joking.  I thought successfully found a parking space at that time (where gym rats prime time at 24 Hr Fitness) was a victory.  Waiting was just as much as a feat.  Luckily, we got in before the masses came in.  They were truly busy, but service did not lack and the food was consistent, which I totally appreciate.

Jinya Ramen Bar
3201 Louisiana St
Houston, TX 77002

Thursday, March 9, 2017

Maison Burdisso

I've been a long time admirer of Maison Burdisso's macarons for some time.
So glad to see them there.
I just love how colorful they are, and they tastes good to match.  The shells were soft and you can tell it's fresh, the cream/filling never disappoint.  It's flavorful and you can taste the real ingredients they put in there.  Talk about technique, I say that because I know how hard it is to make good filling to match the good shells you baked.  They have definitely delivered.

You can find Maison Burdisso either on Tuesdays Rice University's Farmers Market, or Saturdays at Eastside Farmers Market.

Maison Burdisso

Wednesday, March 8, 2017

Ripe Food truck

Was at Eastside Farmers Market milling around.
Saw somebody eating avocado toast, thought sure, I'll try that.
Left is agua fresca with strawberry and mint, and the right is lavender lemonade.  To me, the strawberry and mint was very much like the fruit infused water as opposed to the agua fresca from street stands that I was thinking.  In that case, I like the lavender lemonade a lot, it's very refreshing and you can smell the lavender as you walk up to the truck.
Ok, what I saw the other people had and drawn me to them.  Huge slices of avocado toasts.  I am not an avocado fan typically, so I was very surprised that I liked this so much.  The bread texture was nice, the tomato was not flimsy, the avocado was fresh, and with just enough amount of seasoning, made it all come together.  I enjoyed it quite a bit.  I was talking to a couple while sharing a table and they love it so much that they got an extra order to take home.  That's a true testament of doing food right.

Their theme of their truck is healthy, plant based (aka vegetarian), and most importantly locally grown.  I place a lot of value of what's grown here versus import, because the soil is tailored to the people that live here which also share the same air.  So, if you have allergies, if you eat something planted here or came from here (i.e. honey from local bees), it helps prevent or lessen your condition, just by that.  So, I appreciate that.  And you do see some transactions done amongst vendors here.  For instance, they use lavender from the lavender farm booth, and veggie from the stall a few booths down.  Talk about bringing a community together.

Ripe Cuisine

Tuesday, March 7, 2017

Tiger Den

Happen to be on the Southwest side of town, and stopped in early for some ramen.
It was right around 6p but they still made me write my name and wait outside when they do have plenty of tables open.  Hmm... very curious.
Got a cup of green tea to sooth my throat... hot, hot, hot!
Got the brussel sprouts for starter.  It was crispy but the flavor seems to go with the sauce which were all sank towards the bottom.  That means, whatever on top didn't have as much flavor as the stuff in the middle and the stuff at the bottom were way too concentrated.
Got the Tonkotsu ramen.  The soup is thick, which is what they boast, but for my personal taste, I think it can stand to have been cooked longer or more ingredient to give it a thicker texture.  Not that it's bad, it's decent, but could be better.  The noodle is fresh, got good elasticity, which I knew they were made in house from my first visit here.  The egg is just right, no complaint there.  I added extra pork slices and they are not the type that falls off as you touch it, but it is tender and has decent flavor.

Overall, I think everything is decent, especially after having no good, no flavor ramen elsewhere.  That said, I think they did get a bit complacent with their dishes since they are pretty much the only game in that side of town.  I think if you park them next to Agu or Jin or Jinya, it'll be very different.  Anyway, got seated quickly, good service.  Overall not a bad experience.

Tiger Den
9889 Bellaire Blvd
Ste D-230
Houston, TX 77036

Monday, March 6, 2017

HLSR - World Championship Barbecue Cook-off

Super blessed to work with a Rodeo insider. 
Got an awesome hook up for an awesome tent a the Cook-off
The grill is a production, you see the grill here, and also a larger trailer in the back that is providing food to over 700 people, each night.  
We are served by the members of the group, and they are total pros at this.
So, what did we get?  Chicken, sausage, sides (which I got potato salad, but they have slaw as well), brisket (yummo) and ribs.  Out of the plate, I like the sausage, just because how it was seasoned.  The chicken was great because it was not dried at all.  The brisket was out of this world, they even show you what type of rubs they were using.  LOVE!

Of course, barbecue is not complete without cobbler, and it's my favorite peach cobbler at that!  Perfecto!
View of our tent, with the band. 

If you have never been to a Cook off event, it is essentially a massive party.  Every tent is like a private party.  So, the name of the game is either you have an awesome tent to go hang, which we do. Or, you get as many bands from different tents and go party hop from one to another and bounce around the ground.  The Carnival is already open for fun, along with the junk food you can get there. But if you don't have any connections to a tent, there are a few public tents from various vendors.  The main stage with a live band is free for all, and there are a few tents that charge a fee to go in.  So, not all is lost.

There are different quality of tents too.  The first time I've ever been to one, it was very plain and simple.  Literally, just a table of food and tons of chairs and tables for seating.  We then got our friends' bands and went to another one that has a live band, very very nice port-o-potty and free beer all night long.  This time, was best of both worlds, great barbecue, free alcohol, not just beer, but liquor and wine too.  Also a very fun live band that gets people moving.  Super fun.

Houston Livestock and Rodeo