Sunday, July 18, 2010

posts to come

There are more posts coming, we have just been procrastinating posting and enjoying our summer. This is more of a reminder for Ryan & me.

Reviews pending:

* Feast
* Stella Sola brunch
* Petrol Station
* Cancun/Excellence Resort summary
* Zelko Bistro brunch
* Vieng Thai
* Ceviche Throwdown (tomorrow)

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Yale Street Grill & Gifts

I have been wanting to try out this small place in the heights for some time. I have read about it before and seen it when we have been out and about. It use to be a pharmacy store back in the 1920s. It has the old diner feel to it when you come in. The seats in the booths have all sorts of rips and cracks in the leather because it has been there so long. They have counter where you can sit and order, or lots of tables and booths too. A bigger party was in the back and about to put their order in, our waitress was kind enough to rush in our order so we wouldn't get stuck behind all the others. Nothing fancy here but cheap good food. Specials written on a chalkboard, a pitcher full of syrup, and a small antique shop on the other side of the store. I loved this place. History, antiques, and simple food all in one place. I of course want to try various places for brunch because there are so many options out there, but at the same time I think this would be a great place to become a regular at. It has that sort of small town diner/neighborhood feel to it that I find comforting. The next time we're going to venture out for brunch, I am going to have a hard time deciding to try the new or stick with the old.

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Rosemary Chicken

This is long overdue.. but I tried a simple recipe I found online for rosemary chicken. I like simple recipes and the photos someone posted about it looked really good. However, this was a bit too simple and needed to be spiced up (of course I left that part to Ryan). I don't remember where I got the recipe from, one of the random food blogs I look at from time to time. It basically involved heating oil in a pan, adding garlic, onions, rosemary, asparagus, salt, pepper, lemon, cooked pasta, and cut up chicken. Quick and easy to cook but not enough flavor right after you cook it. I think we added a whole bunch of parmesan cheese to it too. When I had the leftovers for lunch, the rosemary was very strong, had a lot more flavor, but still not that great. Good try, but not one we'd add into the dinner rotation.

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Thursday, June 17, 2010

Peli Peli by Marisa

Hi! Kimmy and Ryan asked if I would guest blog our food adventure here it goes!

My husband and I celebrated our 2 year anniversary few weeks ago at Peli Peli! And it was so much fun and delicious! After ordering the Bacon wrapped chicken, Peli Peli Prawns, Drakensburg Ribs, and the Sticky Toffee pudding, we just couldn't resist inviting Kimmy and Ryan for a double date here soon! So we all ventured out to Vintage Park, anew development just off of 249 and Louetta. It has lots of restaurants and cute shops! Peli Peli is named after the peli peli chili found in South Africa. Many of the dishes have this mild chili in their flavoring. The restaurant has this huge Acacia tree in the middle of it with lights imitating the colors from sunrise to sunset. Also around the restaurant are listed the 12 tribes of Israel, jtust something cool to talk about or ask the waiter about. It's really pretty inside and sets the mood the the delicious food you're about to eat.

For starters we had the bacon wrapped chicken and the sliced flat iron steak. The bacon wrapped chicken was good on it's own, but they serve it with a guava dipping sauce that makes it that much better! The flat iron steak was so so so tender! It was delicious! (and I think my favorite food item of the night!)

I ordered the Etouffee Chicken Portuguese. It was served on African rice with bread (I can't remember the kind of bread it was...) The chicken had a spice to it and overall it was good. But I probably wouldn't order it again! I mean it was alright, but not as good as when I ordered the ribs like last time. My hubs, Bryson, took the waitress's advice and ordered the Filet Mignon. Now this isn't your ordinary filet mignon. The filet is served on top of a deep fried bun with a mushroom sauce on top. And Chef Paul recommends that each bite must have all three things on it! It was really tasty. The bun added a buttery crunch to the meat taste. He also had the carrot bredie (mashed carrots and potatoes mixed), very good mix that I would not of thought of and couscous extravaganza! Kimmy had the #1 recommended item at Peli Peli, Chilean Sea Bass. I was surprised at how flavorful and tasty it was! I think I had a little bit of food envy at this point! Very very good! Ryan ordered the Safari Steak. This had a good bbq taste to it. It was served with a mushroom sauce on top to add the the flavors!

Overall it was fun to enjoy this place for the second time with friends. I think this restaurant is a great place for a date or a fun new restaurant to try with friends! I will definitely be back again! Hope you will try Peli Peli someday.

Thanks for letting me guest blog! It was my first time to blog about food, maybe I'll do a few food reviews on my blog one day :)

-Marisa Owen

*p.s. I (Kimmy) am trying not to use the automated function on my camera. So, it now takes me forever to take photos that do not turn out great but here they are. THANKS FOR THE GUEST POST MARISA!

We stopped by Treat! before going home to get some cupcakes. I do like all of these cupcakes places popping up, but I guess I'm not too adventurous with my cupcake choices. Most places, I only like the carrot cake ones. This time was no different. Didn't care for the pink lemonade (Ryan liked it), but really enjoyed the 24 Karat. Cute shop- probably would stop in again if I was ever in that area.

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Thursday, May 20, 2010

Hubcap Grill

Kimmy had been wanting to try this place for burgers for a while, but it's only open for lunch, so we had to remember about it on the weekend, and I had just about decided that Stanton's City Bites had my favorite burger in Houston.

Hubcap's Frito Pie burger definitely stands up next to Stanton's in my mind though. I think they have to be #1 and #2 for me, but I cant decide which is which. I think I'm still giving the edge to Stanton's, because Kimmy's bacon cheeseburger (which should be the standard burger used for comparison purposes) at Hubcap was great, but not as great at Stanton's in my eyes.

The Frito Pie burger is definitely something else though. It's got fritos, really good chili, cheese, grilled onions, and jalapenos, which after a sitting for a few minutes in the styrofoam take-out container which you try to figure out how to pick up the burger, sort of meld all into one top of the burger. Then, as you eat it, some of the fritos fall out, so you get a free frito pie dessert with your burger as well.

I wouldn't worry too much about fries at Hubcap. We tried them, but they were just ok, and weren't salted quite right. But if you like sweet potato fries or want to give them a try, they've got those too.

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Yelapa Playa Mexicana

Kimmy isn't in the mood for Mexican food as often as most Houstonians seem to be, but I think we're discovering that a Mexican restaurant needs to have something different than all the others to stand out and make it worth visiting. Yelapa definitely has a few different somethings.

First, no automatic chips and salsa, which was fine by us (though we went ahead and ordered some anyway). Instead, they serve a little bar mix with pepitas and these crunchy corn (maybe?) wheel shaped chips. Something different. Yelapa has a pretty nice cocktail menu, even with some non-alcoholic cocktails. I debated on getting a michelada, because I love micheladas and theirs sounded... wait for it... a little different than most. Instead, I ordered the "Don Jalapeno," which had tequila, lime, lots of jalapeno, and maybe some cilantro or something. It reminded me of the spicy jalapeno margarita we had at Tesar's, but a little stiffer, and the herby taste was nice too. Kimmy tried the "Ginger Kicker" - limeade with ginger and mint, but it had maybe a little too much "kicker" to it for us.

We had heard good things about their cebiches, but decided on campechana with crab, scallops, and shrimp instead. The waiter recommended it. It was good, but I think we should have gone with a cebiche. The tomatoey campechana was a nice alternative to the usual chips and salsa though.

It was tough choosing entrees, there were quite a few things that piqued our interest. Kimmy wanted the lamb sopes (Something different.), but they were out of lamb, se we decided to switch to beef (not noticing that the beef is served with a ghost pepper sauce). The sauce was a little too spicy for Kimmy - perfect for me though. :D The beef was really tender, perfectly cooked, so we were happy with the sopes, even though they didnt have lamb that day. I ordered the pork tacos, which is a pretty common order for me, either carnitas or al pastor. These were closer to al pastor, but the tacos were topped with pineapple and goat cheese. Something different. Excellent tacos. The little bit of goat cheese was just enough to balance out the sweetness of the pineapple and went better than you would think on a pork taco.

The prices were a little higher than most Mexican places, but it was well worth it, and there was plenty left over, perfect for my lunch the next day.

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Sparkle Burger

Sparkle Burger is #1 on Jonathan's list for best burger in Houston. It's a tiny little blue stand behing old Chinatown, not too far from where our wedding reception was actually.
The burgers are huge, at least 1/2 lb, probably more. Kimmy got a bacon cheesebuger, and I decided to try the chili cheeseburger. The burgers are good, but because the meat is so big, something that I need in a burger just kind of gets lost. I'm not sure what it is, but the balance is just thrown off or something. Still a great burger, but it probably barely cracks my top 5 for Houston burgers. You'll have to ask Jonathan why it's his #1 (Jonathan - leave a comment to defend Sparkle if you want).
One thing that's pretty great about Sparkle are the shakes, but that may just be that anything that cold tastes that much better when you decide on the first really hot day of the year in Houston to go to a burger stand that you have to stand outside and wait for your food at. And you do have to wait, it takes a little while for your order to get from the happiest order taker you can imagine, to the sweatiest cook in the back, and then for the food to come back out the little sliding window. Maybe the wait is what makes it worth it.

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