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Barcelona with a 3-year-old...

I hope you will post a report...we are going in July and I could use some more ideas!

Feb 10, 2007
dee lannon in Spain/Portugal

Mario Batali & Lidia Bastianich: Enough Already

Where did I hear someone saying something like "do they care if Armani sews every suit himself?"

Feb 10, 2007
dee lannon in Manhattan

Barcelona with a 3-year-old...

Hey -

I searched for a similar reason a while ago. Here's what I came up with:

http://www.chowhound.com/topics/347991

http://www.chowhound.com/topics/341499

Hope you will post about your trip and findings!

dee

Feb 04, 2007
dee lannon in Spain/Portugal

Uchi - Austin

Just ate at Uchi again last night, and it was really great - not perfect, but a memorable, delicious, wonderful experience. We had 5:30 reservations, and were seated right away. The server clued us into the happy hour offerings, of which we chose the mussels and the tako pops. The mussels were great - so fresh and briny, firm enough to remove easily from the shell in one piece, but soooooo soft and pillowy. The broth was heavenly - kaffir lime was understated in the cloudy miso broth, but kicked right into play when a piece of cilantro was added to the mouthful. Yum. The tako pops are cute and yummy...baby octopus marinated and grilled, served on skewers with little mounds of salt, pepper and a japanese ground chile mix. Great presentation, nice tender flavorful octopus.

The happy hour sake, every time I have been there, is the Takara Nigori. I am no sake expert, and this is the lowest price of all their sakes, but I love it. Cloudy, rice-y, cool and ever-so-slightly-sweet, they serve it in a wooden box...the fragrance of the wood (cedar? cypress?) and the unfiltered wine is very nice, especially with spicier foods. They only offer one cheap hot/warm sake, which I think is a shame, especially in winter, but this saved me from having to choose one wine to go with the many different tastes we had.

Next up was the bacon steakie. I seem to remember a couple of Austin 'hounds debating the merits of this dish...I love it. It is like meat candy, in a way honeybaked hams could never aspire to. The boar belly is meltingly tender, with a true taste of MEAT. Rich, sure, and the portion size is perfect. Four skewers, with the amazingly perfect complement of peppery micro-arugula and little tangerine segments...this combination of flavors is one of the reasons I think Uchi is so special...no matter where you are from, or what you think you know about sushi, Japanese food, fusion cuisine...I think Uchi is a unique gem, and Austin is lucky it is here.

Whoa, sounded like I was ending, but I haven't even talked about the sushi yet! Calling Uchi a sushi restaurant, I think, is a mis-nomer. Yes, the fish and the sushi are great, but it is the creativity and execution of so many other things that really elevate this place. Oh, the sushi....there was a discussion here that I can't find right now (why i wanted to give Uchi its own topic/report) about their sushi....I ALMOST remember who said that the rice was sub-par, and I wholly agree. Tiny mounds with a dry-to-the-touch exterior, no vinegar taste...they almost seem pre-made, and are certainly not the foil they should be for the great fish. The saba was outstanding, and I am a saba fan. Toro was fine, suzuki was fine, hamachi was GREAT, binnaga was great, unagi was very good...we ordered the chef's choice, and the only one that brought us back for more was the lowly saba, although if we had more room, the seared binnaga was a contender.

In fact, the mackerel was so fresh and tasty, that we decided to try their saba shio. I am a huge fan of saba shioyaki, and this was a version of that...successful, but I missed the salty crispy skin. The fish was cooked nicely - and it was served with grated daikon, which, without a mess of salt to counter, was a little lost. The spicy cucumber salad was a great counter, however, to the fresh, oily, meaty morsel.

Looking for some vegetables, we got the asparagus tempura...and what a hit it was! The fat spears must have been blanched first... when I saw their size I was apprehensive, but the feather light batter clung to bright green stalks that were tender all the way through. And the dipping sauce was the best I have ever had - SF, LA, and many cities in Japan included.

Finally broke down and got the "hot rock." Always avoided it, thinking it might be more gimmick than delicious, and I'm afraid my intitial suspicions were confirmed. The raw beef looked amazing - vivid, well marbled, and the hot rock was fun...but the taste was just not at all memorable. Ponzu didn't help. Just not at all worth the calories or cost, when you are having a meal like this.

Wishing we had more room, we decided on "dessert" of another order of the saba nigiri, and the second round didn't disappoint. I will be dreaming about these two bites for a long time.

I can't speak at all to makimono - I just don't eat rolls, but the sushi here, although the rice isn't the best, is great. Still, Uchi is so much more. The space is beautiful, the service is gracious, and it toes the line between being a loud fun young spot and a serious meal spot. I think it is a unique and wonderful restaurant, and one i will be visiting over and over.

Oh - After we had started, I heard another waiter selling the omikase menu - $142.00 for two. Probably worth every penny.

This was an anniversary dinner - and it was between Wink (getting some good 'hound love, would have been the first visit) and Uchi ... and I'm sated. Happy. I had to go home and crack a bottle of good zin to get my wine on, but the meal was A+.

Jan 06, 2007
dee lannon in Austin

Apps with Pizza - help me out!

I would focus on veggie and seafood apps...a relish tray with pickled or boiled shrimp? Crudite with clam or crab spread? Broiled scooped out zucchini rounds with mushroom / breadcrumb stuffing? Fresh belgian endive with a dollop of salmon mousse? Grilled or roasted bell peppers and zucchini with a drizzle of balsamic and EVOO? Fun to think about!

Dec 15, 2006
dee lannon in Home Cooking

Barcelona food frenzy with baby in tow

Thank you so much!

Dec 12, 2006
dee lannon in Spain/Portugal

Barcelona chow with pre-schooler?

Mawrter, can you please report on what you found? We are planning a trip to Barcelona with a 2.5 year old, and will be there such a short time - no crappy pizza or McD's for us. We plan to avoid the ultra trendy (per shiromaguro's advice) and have noted the other suggestions...but I'd love to hear how your experience went!

Dec 09, 2006
dee lannon in Spain/Portugal

Barcelona food frenzy with baby in tow

Thanks so much for this report! I just started nosing around looking for kid-friendly places in Barcelona for a trip in a few months...I'm going to print your post out! Can you give me an idea for the price point for most of those places? Ballpark is fine. Thanks!

Dec 09, 2006
dee lannon in Spain/Portugal

Jelly question - liquid or powder pectin...and can I use less sugar?

Thanks everyone for your great advice. This was my first time out the gate, and I did two batches two ways. First, per lisa13's suggestion, I used the powdered "no sugar" pectin, but added three cups of sugar to 4 cups juice and 2 tbls lemon juice. The pomegranate flavor is quite pronounced, it is not too sweet, it is really quite delicious, but it is a little loose. Not too loose to call it jelly, but I'm thinking about writing "gelee" on the label and letting people think I did it on purpose. I think this would be the looser result that MikeG mentioned...if it was any looser I would scrap it.

Then I used a regular powdered pectin (Ball brand - same as the jars I got - handy at the store) with 5.5 cups sugar. The set is beautiful - this is jelly! It is very sweet, but it didn't drown out the fruit flavor, and really makes the other one seem insipid. I consider this batch a success, and thanks to those of you for warning me away from skimping on the sugar!

Dec 09, 2006
dee lannon in Home Cooking

Jelly question - liquid or powder pectin...and can I use less sugar?

I'm going to make jelly from pomegranate juice - I have found recipes calling for liquid pectin, and some for powder. Does anyone have a preference? I'm not working with whole fruit, just juice, if that makes a difference.

Also, I'm seeing juice (100% pure, no added sugar) to sugar rations of 4cups to 7.5...that seems like TOO MUCH SUGAR to me! Seems like it will just taste sweet, losing the fruit flavor. Think I can use less?

Thanks for any advice!

Dec 06, 2006
dee lannon in Home Cooking

New breakfast ideas for kids

The OP stated that her kids don't like eggs, but I've been enjoying this thread so much I just have to put my two cents in. If you do a fritatta, you can keep days worth of breakfasts in pie wedges in glad ware ready to be zapped, oven-heated or eaten cold. All kinds of veggies go into my toddler before 9AM....roasted bell pepper, spinach, cauliflower, green beans, peas....and yum it up according to taste - ham, turkey, cheese...we use 'em in moderation.

Also, just to pipe in about savory breakfasts...since traveling extensively in Scandanavia, mornings mostly mean bread and cold cuts to me. A slice of toasted whole grain bread, a piece of ham/turkey/smoked or cured salmon, some tomato, cucumber or red bell pepper thinly sliced...also, we have been enjoying fresh pear slices with a seeded cracker topped with stinky cheese, and now I must and will add prosciutto....most cereals and muffins seem like dessert to me lately, although that whole wheat pumpkin thing is going to get a shot here!

Dec 05, 2006
dee lannon in Home Cooking

Best coffee in Austin

Yah, having Peet's here was a short lived idyll. Before they came, my mom sent me beans from CA. Now that I'm all officially grown up, here's what I do:

http://www.peets.com/recurring/recurr...

Dec 05, 2006
dee lannon in Austin

Why boil a brine before using?

Right - the heat helps dissolve the salt and sugar and coaxes the flavor from the other additions. I usually heat 1/4 of the total amount of water to be used with all the salt sugar and flavorings, heat for 5 minutes, then add it to the rest of the plain, cold water.

Dec 03, 2006
dee lannon in Home Cooking

Report: BBQ Hound`s First Texas BBQ Pilgrammage to Austin aka Kruez, the foie gras of brisket

What a wonderful post....it reminded me of the first time I visited Austin (live here now) and went to Kreuz when it was still where Smitty's is now. I haven't entered the BBQ fray on CH, but I always have found Kreuz's brisket transcendental, even in the new location. I mean, they hauled the fire from that floor pit in an aluminum tub up the road to the new place - serious, they are. The foie gras of brisket - l love that!!!! Central Texas sausage was also a revelation...but put Elgin on your list next time - i think Kreuz sausage pales in comparison, but until you have compared, is still a revelation.

And you know...I first went to the Salt Lick in 1991...this ex-San Franciscan remembers it being a delightful treat, but further along in my BBQ experience, Louie Muellers, Coopers, City Market, Black's...all delivered better. BUT...in the last 3 years or so, I swear the Salt Lick has gotten so much better. We go with out of town guests because here in SW Austin, it is a hop skip and a jump to the Hill Country, a big pit and picnic tables...can't count how many relatives from New Jersey to Norway have taken their picture next to the pit. Anyhow, I swear, the brisket gets better and better...crispy dark edges around the pink smoke ring, and forkably tender slices under their nice (not my favorite) sauce. I LOVE their tangy, non-creamy cole slaw and they have good beans and I'm not ashamed....I recommend it! Glad to hear I can recommend the airport too, especially for those who won't get to taste ANY Texas BBQ for a looooong time after they leave.

Thanks for such a great, detailed post. It rekindled my love for Central Texas BBQ!

Nov 20, 2006
dee lannon in Texas

[AUS] El Borrego de Oro

This was the place I recommended to you for chile verde - they do a great one - spicy and tangy but with buttery pieces of stewed pork that melt in your mouth. I have the dry birria regularly there, and it is a wonderful, velvety, meaty thing. Mine has always been goat, though. Their rice and beans are also quite good - full of flavor. Their tortillas are great - we always get a dozen corn to take home, and their red salsa has this extra little kick of black pepper that is addictive. Love this place!

Nov 13, 2006
dee lannon in Austin

Marco Polo dim sum in Austin

I think Marco Polo does a fine job - I'm a regular. Things are usually hot, fresh, and close enough to what I'm used to in SF to pass. Their har gow is great - big chunky pieces of briny shrimp in a rice noodle that is neither to thin or too thick, Their siu mye is delicious...meaty and savory and the perfect size. Their cheong fan is light, slippery and savory with either char siu or shrimp. Chinese broccoli with oyster sauce comes quickly when I order it (as soon as I sit down) and you can order specific things if they don't seem to be rotating around. Their jook is great - pork and preserved egg in soupy rice that isn't gelatinous at all. Clams in black bean sauce, their amazing little tender baby squid in curry sauce, fish balls with cilatro and scallions, roast duck....all good. Jelly fish was crunchy yet compliant, chicken feet are fine (a little greasy for me), pig ears were fantastic (tasted cured?) and I'm waiting for the duck tongues to come around when I'm in a daring mood. My only complaint with Marco Polo is their custard tarts...they are weirdly tasteless, too greasy and cannot compare to what I have had at almost every dim sum place in SF. Oh well, we make due with sesame taro root balls with delicious red bean paste -hot, crunchy, gooey - perfect. Good tea, and they keep it coming. I think they stretch out in a Malaysian direction from time to time, so authentic, maybe not...but I have never had a failure of a meal there, and most have been what keeps me sane. I grew up two blocks from Clement Stree in SF...sigh...

Pao's, as far as I can tell, doesn't do dim sum the way I am used to it - dumplings and other small shareable dishes on carts with tea. I'm not familiar with northern style...when I went and asked about dim sum, they gave me a separate menu and a pencil to check off my choices. What I got was fabulous - really super great, but not what I think of as dim sum. I had tangy spicy tofu - slivers of hard tofu in a chile oil sauce...good. Dan Dan noodles were great - more peanut taste than anything else, but once you stirred the chile sauce up into them they were wonderful. The spicy wontons were amazing...slippery savory goodness in a fiery pool of red hot chile sauce.

I'm going to skip talking about T&S and Tien Hong except to say, T&S yay (except it is sooooooo far from where I live...even Pao's is closer) and Tien Hong boo....

Nov 07, 2006
dee lannon in Austin

Fry bread alert! Navajo tacos! Austin - until 10PM tonight

Just got back from the Austin Pow Wow and Native American Heritage Festival, and their food court was hoppin'. Had a buffalo taco - a good (possibly homemade) flour tortilla holding stewed buffalo meat. It was mildly spiced, the beef was lean and tender, and it was a savory few mouthfuls....for $4.00, not highly recommended. BUT! The Navajo taco and blue corn fry bread were wonderful. The Navajo taco: fry bread (a puffy fried disc of dough) topped with ground beef, pinto beans, chopped tomatoes and lettuce, cheddar cheese. The meat/bean mixture was (as seems to be the norm with this dish) hardly spiced at all, but tasted meaty and beany and was delicious. It was $7.00, but it filled me and my husband and my toddler. The best part was the green chile salsa to add on top - incendiary, fresh, chunky and a perfect complement to the rich and savory taco. We also got a plain blue corn fry bread which was fantastic - the corn flavor was pronounced and it was grainy and puffy at the same time. Just delicious. $3.00.

I saw buffalo burgers and chili for sale, some nice looking roasted corn and skewers of meat, and regular burgers, fries and turkey legs. The web site mentioned green chile bowls, but I didn't run across them. What a treat to have a Navajo taco here in Austin! The event is today only, at the Toney Burger Center where the Sunset Valley Farmer's Market is. Its free, so if you can deal with a chaotic parking mess, you can have some Native American food, shop for crafts and see some amazing drumming, dancing and singing.

Nov 04, 2006
dee lannon in Austin

Sugar skulls in Austin?

Last minute, I know, so if anyone knows of a place that usually has a lot, a good variety...THANKS!

Oct 31, 2006
dee lannon in Austin

[AUS] Quick & Healthy

Well, you can get the sauce on the side and dole it out yourself - I'm a fan of the chicken and veggies teriyaki bowl - for fast and healthy, it really does the trick. Don't forget the sushi and salads to grab in the cold case...usually a major step above supermarket sushi, and the ginger dressing (on the side) with the seared tuna salad is great...

Oct 30, 2006
dee lannon in Austin

[AUS] New Mexican styles

Heya,

In August, Central Market and Whole Foods offer roasting, activities and ready-made foods using New Mexico Hatch Chiles. That said, and I am begging for correction, there doesn't seem to be too much New Mexican cuisine around these parts. El Borrego de Oro does a mean puerco en chile verde, but I haven't found a fry bread here per se.

During the Hatch frenzy, we met some Swedish friends at Shady Grove...I ordered a Hatch chile chicken soup which was just runny salsa, and my husband ordered a nice chargrilled burger with a fresh roasted green chile salsa slathered on top. It was good. It was good enough to keep me wondering about it, just a little bit!

Great Q - FRY BREAD? In Arizona at the Tohono Odom Res, you can get fry bread with green chile, cheese, or some sugary thing. Maybe we need to move this to the greater SW board, but I would love to know more about the more indigenous offering of the American SW.

Oct 23, 2006
dee lannon in Austin

cuban

Is the Tropical still open on Sunset in between Echo Park and Silverlake? That was a gooooood cuban sandwich, but it has been years....

Oct 21, 2006
dee lannon in Los Angeles Area

[AUS] Just moved down South and feeling food despair.

My favorite chinese food in the area is Ng House, at Westgate and William Cannon. I've enjoyed their specials, as well as BBQ pork ho fun, MaPo DoFu, and the spicy half duck is wonderful, covered with a slightly sweet, spicy sauce and onions.

I know it is less than perfect, but I love the po-boys at the Evangeline Cafe (that bread!), and their Oysters Contraband appetizer is decadent and delicious. The Evangeline salad with their cajun spiced grilled shrimp is healthy and light and satisfying, especially if you indulge in a pistolette (a puffy roll type thing) on the side. They have some good music there, too.

There is another cajun place - I think it is called Cypress Cafe, but I only went once and wasn't impressed.

Tino's has become a regular haunt. It is actually around the corner from the Galaxy Cafe (good spinach salad with shrimp and homemade roasted shallot vinaigrette) in the same shopping center. Like Brian Lindauer said, a great weeknight place - just avoid the steamed veggies, and I have been leaning more towards the chicken (moist with crispy roastedy bits) and falafel than the gyro (mystery) meat...

La Tapatia must be the taqueria Franktex means on Ben White near Banister, and yeah, it is pretty durn good, and cheap, and reliable. Their breakfasts are huge and good. Tacos and tortas are good, and lots of their meats are really really good - especially the pierna and al pastor. I have a friend who lives on their cheese enchiladas with green sauce. Hey - read MPH's awesome report in the middle of this:

http://www.chowhound.com/topics/show/...

I second Lee's Kitchen....and even though their banh mi are different, I really, really love them. The bread is not the traditional baguette style, but is yeasty and crusty and delicious. My husband and I get one grilled chicken, one grilled pork and go halfsees. Good pho, not transcendental, but good.

Yaghi's Pizza on William Cannon just west of MoPac (I think, I always get delivery) is my second favorite pizza in Austin. Their regular pizzas are good, but we are addicted to their spinach bread - looks like a calzone, filled with mozzarella, spinach and fresh garlic. Stromboli is also nice, but a little greasy sometimes.

El Regio on Stassney and South First has great roasted chicken, with the most amazing green salsa - hot, but creamy and addictive. You can get a half or whole chicken with roasted onions and corn tortillas and that salsa...mmmm.

The Flip Happy Crepe trailer on Oltorf and S.Lamar is very yummy and fun to boot, especially as it gets a little cooler. As Amysuehere so rapturously reported, the ham, gruyere and green onion crepe (eaten hand-held burrito style) is very, very yummy. I didn't like the spicy pulled pork and pickle crepe, pork tasted too strongly of tabasco and seemed mismatched with the delicate crepe.

I better get some work done....

Oct 20, 2006
dee lannon in Austin

Looking for "big steamed chicken buns" in Chinatown

Or Clement street? I remember when I was a kid getting big chicken buns at a place called (I think) Fook, but I'm pretty sure that is long gone.

How are these places? (all near Austin)

Just to add to sambamaster's excellent advice, here are a couple of recent (ish) threads

http://www.chowhound.com/topics/show/...

http://www.chowhound.com/topics/show/...

I think you are asking about southern home cooking in another thread, and I think the Monument Cafe fits in there better - in this list you have some incredible BBQ and one home cooking place.

Oct 16, 2006
dee lannon in Austin

Juniper Berries and Star Anise

I like to use juniper berries (dried, toasted and lightly crushed) as part of my cure for gravlax. I added them to a red wine reduction sauce for a roast duck last x-mas...yum. I second the pork suggestions...haven't done it for a while, but a white wine and juniper marinade for roast pork was great.

Oct 15, 2006
dee lannon in Home Cooking

Houston: Xiao Long Bao or Shanghai Dumplings

No raves here, but this thread gives a few places in Houston to try out....

http://www.chowhound.com/topics/show/...

Oct 15, 2006
dee lannon in Houston

Greek stuff - St. Elias Greek/Mediterranean Festival & Tino's SW

Yes, great news! They opened in the shopping center on Slaughter and Brodie, next door to Twin Liquor - same place that holds the Galaxy Cafe.

Oct 10, 2006
dee lannon in Austin

2nd Annual Texas Barbequeue Festival [AUS]

Yes, it was lame, and sausage seemed to be the only offering I could find - besides a display chicken laying coyly on its side with anthropomorphic breasts. How? Why? The image is haunting me and enough to keep me away next year!

Oct 10, 2006
dee lannon in Austin

Greek stuff - St. Elias Greek/Mediterranean Festival & Tino's SW

Well, I found a post on last year's festival when I was checking out talk about Tino's Greek Cafe. Been to both in the last week, so I figured I should give my two cents!

ST. ELIAS: I was excited by the talk of Eritrean food in last year's thread, and looking forward to paying too much for wine by the glass (2 year old son - don't do bottles right now). I was with some visiting relatives who find feta to be unpleasantly exotic, soooo....three beef souvlaki/shish ka-bob plates and one Mediterranean sampler plate.

Beef was nice, tangy marinade and crispy charred edges. Came with 1/2 a piece of great, big, fluffy pita, a tiny dollop of hummus and a squirt of tzatziki. Not exciting, just the way my inlaws like it.

The Mediterranean plate held the best dolmades I have ever, ever had - consider this a plea for a recipe (I know, another board.)! They were small, the grape leaves were a deep deep green and had an amazing pop - they must have been wrapped expertly. They had chopped kalamata olives and rice inside, an amazing proportional balance. Exquisite. My toddler and I fought for the last bite. The rest was OK - not great. Kibbeh, said it was lamb, could have been any ground meat with tepid spices...all at the center of a fried ball of what must have been falafel. Green beans with ground beef - fine...the beans were too soft for me, but the meat made them palatable to my son, so he had some veggies tonight. Tabbouleh seemed to be bereft of bulgur...lots of tomato, parsley...actually quite refreshing with the fried kibbeh and the meaty green beans. Hummus - a little too lemony, but good. Rice pilaf was bland but seemed homemade. $12.00??? Yikes.

(Last year everyone got into a discussion on the wine price per glass and the price per bottle and I am here to tell you that the bottle is the way to go...those glasses were THIMBLES! $4.00 for a thimble, $15.00 for probably 10 thimbles. My son will be three next year...maybe....)

One more thing - I got the tiropetes and spanokopita...there were huge lines for everything but this, and I had left over food tickets, so...the tiropetes were a little greasy in the phyllo crust, but the feta and herb filling had a great balance of tang and savory. I haven't tried the spanokopita yet...that spinach thing...but they look amazing.

Anyway - we got to dance in a circle, hear a bouzouki, jump in a mini-moonwalk, and taste some fun stuff. It was a nice evening.

TINO'S: We were thrilled, in our SW Austin outpost, to find that Tino's was moving in to the space Austin's Pizza abdicated. Didn't know what to expect... but it was a nice pleasant surprise to the 'hood. No ambience...this is a eat-n-run place, cafeteria style. My hubby and I decided to each get a meat & three sides plate (he's not a hound, but he supports my hounding) and split with the little guy.

First of all, despite what their menu says, both soup and salad seem to come with these meals. Not for take-out, but for eat-in.

The soups were wonderful! The lemon chicken was a great light chicken stock, tender little chunks of meat, and the lemon was pronounced but not puckery - really nice. The lentil soup was blended, and spicy....so it was a wonderful velvety potage with an after-bite of heat...really good! The salads were small mounds of romaine ribbons, with fresh tomatoes and cucumber...topped with feta crumbles and their creamy garlicky dressing. Nice, but some of the cafeteria workers can be quite liberal with it...next time, dressing on the side.

Plate 1 had chicken, hummos, steamed veggies, falafel. Chicken - gooood, juicy breast meat, cut off the vertical rotisserie, marinated, crispy edges, nice. Hummos - mmmmm......actually, might call it perfect, with a prounounced flavor of extra virgin olive oil. Steamed veggies, NEVER AGAIN...cauliflower, broccoli and carrots terribly overcooked and sitting in an oily steam bath...BLECH. Falafel, weirdly exciting on our first visit...light, freshly fried, the texture was a nice blend of crispy exterior to cushy interior. On our next visit it was plebian....just tasted fried.

Plate 2 had kebab meat, mashed potatoes, meatball in tomato sauce, and spanakopita. Kebab (gyro) meat - good crusty bits, nicely present flavor of lamb, good. Mashed potatoes....a counterpart to the nasty veggies I will never order again. Meatball -nice...tomato sauce was mellow but herby and good, meatball was fluffy...weird to have a big hunk of meat as a side dish, but OK! Spanokopita....just looking at the ones I brought home from St. Elias...even if at the moment I'm off my spinach, I can see that phyllo does not benefit from the steam table... pass on this.

Funny how you stumble into a certain ethnic cuisine for a while....I think we will be checking out the other Greek offerings discussed here on CH. And I have it in my mind to find out more about neighborhood offerings...

Oct 08, 2006
dee lannon in Austin

Houston - 24 hours only!

I'm suddenly finding myself heading to Houston tomorrow for almost exactly 24 hours...enough for one dinner, one breakfast, and one lunch. I have been poring over the ga-jillions of Houston threads, and thought I would see if I could get some recommendations based on our limitations. We will be at the Sheraton Galleria Suites, so say within a 15 minute drive of there. We have a two year old with an adventurous palate and excellent restaurant manners, but I think fine dining is out. I'm in Austin, so I can do without BBQ, Tex-Mex, or American home-style. Old, established places with character appeal slightly more, but its about the chow. Particularly interested in Italian and tapas, but open to anything.

So - what would be the one each "don't miss" place for b-fast, lunch and dinner?

Sambamaster, if you are out there...I'm desperately hoping to factor Sichuan in here for lunch or dinner - do you have any recommendations for dishes that AREN'T spicy ... our toddler loves chinese food, but isn't tolerant of too much fire.

Sep 23, 2006
dee lannon in Texas