When I joined Twitter some years ago, it gave me suggestions for people to follow based on my interests. One of those people was David Lebovitz, and while I wasn't acquainted with his work at the time, I was fascinated in the way of a non-stalkerish yet avid Twitter follower by his seemingly idyllic ... More >>
Our loop freeway system has its origins in a City of Houston Planning Department planning report from the 1950s. Ten years later is was an official project taken up by Harris County. It's been through a lot of ups and downs, but generally Beltway 8 is how we get around our massive Houston. Someone ... More >>
My view of the film Bottle Shock was partially obscured by a Tyrannosaurus Rex skeleton, but it didn't really matter, because there were five wine glasses before me waiting to be filled. At the kick-off event for the 11th Annual Sugar Land Wine & Food Affair, the intent was to recreate the pivotal ... More >>
When translated from France to America, the culinary capital of the world's traditions often amount to starched white table clothes and stuffy service. Houston is luckier than most cities, as there are a few places in the Bayou City to get a great croque madame or a delicious foie gras torchon. In o ... More >>
My family and I spent a lot of time in France when I was a child, and though I was never a picky eater per se, seven-year-old me wasn't super-enthused about foie gras or bouillabaisse. I was, however, a fan of salad, and my parents and I immediately managed to discover one that was available at pret ... More >>
November 24, 1933, was a really good day. After 13 years of being unable to sell, produce, import or transport alcohol, thanks to the Anti-Saloon League and the passage of the 18th Amendment, Texas approved ratification of the 21st Amendment, ending Prohibition. Even though few drinkers had ceased ... More >>
A strange neighborhood that you won't easily forget comes to life at MFAH.
The rest of the best 2013.
One of my fondest memories of traveling to Paris was buying a baguette that was as tall as I was. My mother and I gathered slices of prosciutto, pont l'Eveque cheese, apples, strawberries and grapes from a farmers market to make a picnic lunch behind the Eiffel Tower - all we needed was some bread. ... More >>
Production is flat, lifeless and sadly unremarkable.
With the Affordable Care Act tied to the federal budget, and the Senate and House of Representatives about as cooperative as a herd of sugared-up, nap-free toddlers, it seemed inevitable that the government would shut down at 12:01 a.m. on Tuesday...and it did. A government shutdown hasn't happene ... More >>
Houstonians love food. Dining out is one of our favorite pastimes, and we embrace it like it's the official sport of Houston. We are a city of "foodies," and thanks to us, the restaurant industry is thriving. Unfortunately, this insane love of food has also spawned a culture of restaurant monsters ... More >>
This is the first part of a three-part chef chat series. Check back with us for Parts 2 and 3 of this chat, which will run in this same space Thursday and Friday. Since it opened approximately one year ago, Etoile (which means "star" in French) has gained a growing legion of fans for its classic Fr ... More >>
Last week, many were surprised -- some even perplexed -- to see our beloved city on the annual New York Times list of places to visit in 2013. Houston was number seven on a list of 46 that included Rio, Amsterdam, Singapore, Hawaii's Big Island, Oslo, Bangkok and Paris. Yes, we were on a "must visit ... More >>
The follies of 1832
Henry Ossawa Tanner, who lived in Paris for years, wanted to be taken on his own terms.
The hip-hop world is a less than sensible place -- lots of times, you're even required to clarify when bad means bad and when bad means good -- so once a week we're going to get with a rapper and ask them to explain things. Something you always wanted to ask a rapper? E-mail firstname.lastname@example.org. ... More >>
Julie Delpy brings the Paris gang to the city.
Always more than an ingenue, she's taking on everything that's wrong with movies - and she's bringing Chris Rock.
The indispensable guidebook to Paris by French food authority Patricia Wells is The Food Lover's Guide to Paris. Wells knows exactly where to find the flakiest croissants, the essential bistros, the most knowledgeable wine merchants, the richest, darkest chocolates, the most sublime cheeses, the ear ... More >>
Food & Wine magazine recently featured a series of articles on culinary destinations, or "...the world's best food pilgrimages," as they put it. While it was indeed interesting, I must say that places like Bangkok, Rome and India are just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to food travels. The ... More >>
Gird your loins. Main Street Theater, which has experienced great success with Voyage, the first part of its The Coast of Utopia trilogy, has decided to extend its run and bring back the Voyage for two performances, "providing the chance to see all the parts of the trilogy over three consecutive day ... More >>
Driving home from work the other day, I found myself making a mental list. I wondered: Who would I have lunch with if time, money and social standing got thrown out the window? Would I pick an actor, singer, artist, politician? I established a few rules: 1- It can be anyone in history (no fictio ... More >>
When Viswa Subbaraman was an undergraduate at Duke University, he had no idea where he would end up. He had played trombone and violin, but music as a career to him did not seem like an option. He had come from a family of doctors and was planning on becoming one himself -- that was, until his sopho ... More >>
Photos by Tracie and Jeremy Parzen.Little known appellations like this one -- Quincy AOC in the Loire Valley -- can deliver extreme value.When people ask me about great value in wine today, I always point them to Spain, to Italy (and in particular, Southern Italy), and to the Loire Valley in ... More >>
Espresso and a latte at Croissant BriocheLast Saturday, my husband and I were caffeine-starved and hungry, but short on time. Needing a fast bite to eat, we cruised around Rice Village, choosing our destination by parking spot availability. When an open space presented itself in front of Cr ... More >>
There's opportunity in them thar skyscrapers.A big new report by PwC, which used to be PriceWaterhouseCoopers, says Houston is one of 26 "Cities of Opportunity" in the world today. The only other American cities: New York, LA, Chicago and San Francisco. Pretty classy company. We came in 11 ... More >>
Louis-Auguste BissonToday is Fredric Chopin's 201st birthday, although some sources claim he was actually born on February 22. Chopin's incredible nocturnes, pale complexion, consumption, and melancholy outlook have more than once prompted Rocks Off to christen him the Original Goth. He rema ... More >>
Masson's famous Fluffernutters and the main ingredient: Fluff.Rebecca Masson is one of Houston's top pastry chefs and proprietor of Fluff Bake Bar, her online pastry shop. This petite woman's fiery energy and drive has taken her far and wide, from Wyoming to Paris to New York to Houston. This ... More >>
Photos by GroovehouseSee more of the entries in the gingerbread dog house competition in our slideshow."I lived in Paris for two years; that's where I went to culinary school," explained pastry chef Rebecca Masson last night as she gestured to her entry in the 3rd annual Christmas Tail ginger ... More >>
Sub Pop RecordsSisters Bianca and Sierra Cassady collide in the celestial, moody musical collective known as CocoRosie, which stops in Houston tonight at the newly revamped Fitzgerald's. A combination of pop, blues, electronica, hip-hop, and even straight-up classical opera, CocoRosie creates ... More >>
Photos by Ruthie JohnsonThierry André Tellier Café's version on the left, French Riviera Bakery's on the right. Someone once said that an éclair is "a cake long in shape, but short in duration," and with him I have to agree. I have always loved this treat, with its pillowy pastry and smoot ... More >>
Hala DaherHala Daher is stuck in Paris. Sure, she's staying at her aunt's house in the 4th arrondissement, steps away from the Louvre and the Centre Pompidou. And it's a step up from Beirut, where she was previously stranded until she hustled her way onto a flight from Lebanon to France a few ... More >>
Save your Voulez-vous coucher avec moi ce soir? line for something else
Cowboy diplomacy from our man in Paris, John Travolta.
Chris Strong/ Drag City Last Friday, Rocks Off had the distinct pleasure of talking to Mayo Thompson, the man behind psychedelic (or not) art-rockers The Red Krayola, whose career spans the early days of Houston label International Artists, the art worlds of New York and Europe in the '70s, a sti ... More >>
Photo by Matthew TaplingerThe quality of the grass at ACL on Charles Attal's apparent birthday blow out (if projections for "Feliz Cumpleanos" were to be believed) was nothing to sniff at. The great lawn of Zilker Park was emerald and ready to absorb the dance steps of a sold-out crowd with h ... More >>
Photo courtesy GHCVBForbes Traveler has a new list up -- called alternately "the 13 greatest urban silhouettes" and "the world's most stunning city skylines."Here is what makes a skyline great, according to the article: It has to be more than merely memorable, it must have some exceptional chara ... More >>
Omar Vera illustrates his trek to the Texas-style Paris, Florence and Rome
We love to see classic French food in Houston, but we complain bitterly if it isn't just like what we had in Paris
Bistro Le Cep offers up some very nice French cuisine in the Houston countryside.
La Colombe d'Or's French 75
Part 5 in the six-part history of Tex-Mex