And don't forget the Maestro or the Disco Biscuits! The Maestro is my favorite sandwich on the planet.
By Kaitlin Steinberg
By Minh T Truong
By Molly Dunn
By Brooke Viggiano
By Kaitlin Steinberg
By Molly Dunn
By Molly Dunn
By Eating Our Words
But the real charm at Eatsie Boys is to be found in its newer menu items — the ones that Marcus needed a real kitchen to cook — such as blistered shisito peppers served with a lip-lickingly good miso dipping sauce, or finely cooked, hand-cut french fries that are sculpted with such finesse as to be a dish unto themselves. (I recommend requesting that savory, earthy miso sauce in lieu of the ketchup that's served with the fries for an extra kick of salty flavor.)
Most important, the Eatsie Boys cafe has retained the casual appeal of its old food truck — something that's tough to capture when a mobile unit goes brick-and-mortar. This is purposeful and also very smart.
The sunshine-soaked space is inviting from morning until night, serving breakfast, lunch and dinner. You can grab a quick lunch or linger over your laptop and latte. Basic dishes such as pancakes or turkey sandwiches are slightly elevated, but not to heights that are inaccessible for the average diner. Prices certainly reflect the high-quality ingredients and well-planned space but are never exorbitant. The cheerful counter service is quick and efficient. In short, although Eatsie Boys may be high-concept in some areas, the cafe takes all comers — and sends them away satisfied.
4100 Montrose Blvd.
Houston, TX 77006
Category: Coffee Shops
4100 Montrose, 713-524-3737.
One of the few complaints I have about Eatsie Boys can't be solved by the Boys themselves, and it's the fact that you can't purchase their tasty beer at the cafe due to bizarre TABC laws. In fact, because the Eatsie Boys team also runs a brewery, the TABC dictates they will never be allowed to serve any kind of alcohol at any of their other establishments. How wonderful would the cafe be if you could enjoy all the fruits of the Eatsie Boys's labor under one roof?
Eatsie Boys does serve another local brew, however: coffee made with beans from local roaster Greenway Coffee. Roaster (and fellow cafe owner) David Buehrer set up the program here, and it's ably run day to day, turning out basic espressos and lattes. Other local food purveyors are supported, too; locally brewed kombucha is in the refrigerated drinks case, and Marcus's father sells a few of his Grateful Bread products like an addictive, garlicky Sriracha sauce that's found near the register alongside My Table magazine's handy travel guide, A Food Lover's Guide to Houston.
In the pastry case just a few feet away are sweets from La Guadalupana Bakery and Rebecca Masson of Fluff Bake Bar, whose updates on old favorites like Oreos, Moon Pies and Fluffernutters are a natural fit here. The best cookie in her rotation — the Couch Potato — is made just for the cafe and is a nod to the wink-wink-nudge-nudge stoner aesthetic that also permeates Eatsie Boys (and, indeed, many modern menus). After all, there's only one thing missing when you're sitting against a graffiti mural by a guy who calls himself "Skeez181" listening to Phish jam over the Eatsie Boys's updated stereo while you eat a cookie filled with potato chips, cornflakes, marshmallows and chocolate chips.
The few other complaints I have pale against the parade of food delivered by the cafe every day. The team is often slammed, and it shows in these first few opening months, when sandwiches arrive without their accompanying salads or breakfast is sold out by 9:30 a.m.
And occasionally I'll encounter a dish that doesn't quite hit the mark: A kale salad composed of both raw and tempura kale sounded excellent in theory, but the execution flew too close to the sun. Sheets of unmarinated, totally raw (the menu wasn't kidding) kale greens were inedible, while the piece of tempura-fried kale on top was delicious yet disappointing in context: It was the only part of the salad I could eat.
A "Namaste" sandwich filled with roasted cauliflower, clouds of whipped feta and house-pickled peppers was terrific — once I scraped it off the far-too-thick slices of brioche, whose buttery crumble completely masked the flavors within. These are minor quibbles, however, and ones that will ideally shake themselves out in time.
And these little flaws certainly don't erase the truly spectacular dishes I've had at Eatsie Boys: that matzoh ball pho or a doughy bagel-and-lox combo topped with house-cured salmon that boasts a slick, salty sheen, a dish that marks Eatsie Boys as only the third place in the entire city where you can enjoy that New York breakfast of champions as it's meant to be eaten.
Or my current favorite, a salad of baby asparagus over punchy arugula in a sunny Meyer lemon vinaigrette. The entire affair is topped with a creamy handful of stark white burrata and a single egg yolk. The salad tastes like everything fresh and new about spring, while that shock of white burrata is like walking out of a dark room into the sunlight, your eyes adjusting to the brightness as you feel warmth on your face and blink a few times to take it all in.
Nearly every visit to the Eatsie Boys feels this way, though. A new day is dawning in Houston. And that's a feeling worth capturing.