Good Deeds: Volunteer Time and Food

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April 14, 2013

Roots Bistro Makes Tasteless Domestic Violence Joke on Marquee to Sell Beer

According to the National Domestic Violence Hotline, one in four women (24.3 percent) and one in seven men (13.8 percent) 18 and over in the United States have been the victim of severe physical violence by an intimate partner in their lifetime. Hilarious, at least according to the now-closed Roots Bistro. In April, the vegetarian-friendly supporter of local farmers changed the marquee outside the restaurant to read "Beer should be like violence: domestic." Immediately, customers and passersby called out Roots on the incredibly offensive sign, which was promptly taken down and replaced with "Sorry a million times over, Houston." But not before it had already been seen on SalonJezebel, The Daily Mail and MSN. Roots Bistro closed in June.

Donate wet or dry pet food to needy animals this season.
Donate wet or dry pet food to needy animals this season.
Fill your metal tray with a variety of sweet and savory pastries and breads at El Bolillo.
Geri Maria Harris
Fill your metal tray with a variety of sweet and savory pastries and breads at El Bolillo.

April 16, 2013

PSA: This Rat Fetus Was Not Found in Timmy Chan's Fried Rice

In sort of the opposite of a scandal, we discovered that the nasty photo of a rat fetus that had been circulating on the Internet and was being credited to restaurants across the country was...(drumroll, please)...not from Houston, either. Houston Hip Hop News reported on its Facebook page that the rat fetus was found in some fried rice at Timmy Chan's. The world may never know where the rat fetus originated, but Timmy Chan's is making sure that those who accused them of making the gross grub pay. The restaurant filed a lawsuit against Facebook, Go Daddy and Houston Hip Hop News in late April.

August 7, 2013

La Fisheria Bans Kids After 7 p.m. and Everyone on the Internet Has an Opinion

La Fisheria made national news after an announcement that the owner, celebrity chef Aquiles Chavez, had decided to ban kids under nine years of age after 7 p.m. out of respect for other patrons. Chavez told the Houston Chronicle that the decision came after customers complained about children running around the restaurant while adults were trying to have a romantic or low-key evening away from children — their own or otherwise. The decision made national news and sparked debate about whether it's okay for a restaurant to ask unruly children to leave or for a "family-friendly" restaurant to ban children after a certain hour. Generally, folks seemed to be ­behind La Fisheria's decision.

August 16, 2013

Corner Table Restaurant Valet Driver Accidentally Kills Motorcyclist

So 2013 wasn't a great year for Corner Table or Bruce Molzan (aside from the fact that we gave them a pretty good review). Molzan had nothing to do with the news that in August one of his valet drivers made a right turn from a left lane, striking and killing a motorcyclist on Westheimer. We weren't able to get many more details on the incident from the police or from Corner Table, but folks on Facebook were quick to criticize the valet business in general and its overwhelming presence in parking-strapped Houston.

September 11, 2013

Local Chef Arrested, Suspected of Attempted Sexual Assault

Zackery Ray Alolabi, the chef/owner of the Original Napoli Italian Restaurant Chain, was accused of attempted sexual assault on July 19 by a female employee. The police report states that the woman, who had been working for Alolabi for the past two years, claimed the chef, who is affectionately known as "Papa Zack," had been trying to kiss her and had been making "unwanted advances" all day. She stated in the report that he was highly intoxicated and eventually approached her, "placing his exposed penis in her face," before attempting to lie on top of her. In addition, Alolabi didn't realize everything he was doing could be heard — seems the accuser's ex-husband was listening in via a cellphone that had not been hung up. Whoops. Alolabi was scheduled to be arraigned on December 12.

September 16, 2013

Paula Deen Makes a Loopy Return at Metro Cooking Houston

Paula Deen's return to the spotlight after months in hiding was alternately emotional and confusing for both Deen and the audience who came to watch her demonstration at the Metro Cooking Houston show. She walked on the stage and commenced sobbing for approximately two minutes, seemingly overwhelmed by the show of support after her months out of the limelight stemming from allegations of racism. We reported that Deen's return was "weird," and many readers thought that was a bit harsh, immediately leaping to Deen's defense in the comments. We stand by the fact that we thought she was weird, but we appreciate your concern for a fallen TV star.

October 23, 2013

Torchy's Tacos' Suit Against Texas Taco Co. Alleges Theft of Food-Prep Bible

As soon as the first Texas Taco Co. opened, in Baytown, diners started sending messages to Torchy's asking, essentially, 'What's up with your new restaurant?' People assumed, because of similarities between the two menus, that Texas Taco Co. was somehow affiliated with Torchy's. Turns out the two restaurants are entirely different entities, and it does sort of seem like Texas Taco Co.'s menu is eerily similar to that of Torchy's, perhaps because a former Torchy's employee allegedly stole the "Taco Bible" and brought it to Texas Taco Co. That's right, there's a Taco Bible.

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