Randy Rucker

  • Blogs

    September 10, 2014

    Review: El Big Bad has Captured Most of the Best from El Gran Malo

    The "Spicy, Smoky, Sticky Ribs" exceeded its promises. The Berkshire ribs, coated in a sauce with smoked Morita chiles, rice wine vinegar and piloncillo sugar, were perfectly tender. The heat from the chiles grew but never became unbearable, and the sauce had a deep, bittersweet character reminiscen ... More >>

  • Blogs

    June 26, 2014

    Kitchen Improv: Pork Rinds for the Thrifty-Minded

    If there's one thing Shiftwork Bites taught me, it's how to improvise. From poaching eggs in a coffee maker to the space management required to cook in 25 square feet, I learned how to make do with what limited resources I had, both in terms of space and equipment. I try to incorporate those lessons ... More >>

  • Blogs

    April 29, 2014

    Third Annual Go Pig! Or Go Home! Suckling Pig Throwdown Coming May 4

    Get your stretchy pants ready, 'cause it's time for the third annual festival of gluttony, otherwise known as Go Pig! Or Go Home! For the past two years, Kata Robata has been inviting local chefs to roast whole pigs in the parking lot in front of the restaurant, and the event has continually brought ... More >>

  • Blogs

    April 28, 2014

    Sweet & Savory Benefit Helps Save Dogs With Delicious Dinner

    Several years ago, Rebecca Masson and Tracy Hartman held the first "Sweet and Savory" dinner benefitting Lucky Dog rescue. They had a few dozen people and raised $3,500. Nine dinners later, and the duo--along with a slew of local and regional chefs--have raised an estimated $150,000 for the animal r ... More >>

  • Blogs

    April 18, 2014

    Upcoming Events: Take A Culinary Trip to Italy & the 3rd Coast

    Start your Tuesday mornings off right with pancakes at Ouisie's Table. Every Tuesday from 7 a.m. until 10 a.m., Ouisie's Table will offer a multitude of pancake choices paired with two eggs made however you prefer, bacon, fruit, coffee and juice for $17; pancakes are available a la carte for $6. Sat ... More >>

  • Blogs

    March 19, 2014

    Where the Chefs Eat: Benjy Mason, Mark Decker, Richard Knight

    This week, our Where the Chefs Eat series visits the The Heights-area chefs of Treadsack, the restaurant group that includes the ever popular Down House, D & T Drive Inn, and the opening-in-the-near-future Hunky Dory and Foreign Correspondents. We asked them the regular questions, and we got some am ... More >>

  • Blogs

    October 29, 2013

    El Big Bad Is Coming Soon: Divine Tequila Cocktails and Chef-Driven Tex-Mex

    Located on the prominent corner of Travis and Prairie in the location that used to house Cabo's, El Big Bad, the offshoot of Lea McKinney and Steve Sharma's wildly successful El Gran Malo, is almost ready to open. The gorgeous copper-topped bar is in place downstairs. The large, inviting patio is ju ... More >>

  • Blogs

    July 18, 2013

    Chef Chat, Part 2: Jean-Philippe Gaston of Cove, On Working with Robert Gadsby and the Idea Behind Cove

    This is the second part of a three part Chef Chat series. You can read Part 1 here and part 3 Friday. Yesterday, we chatted with Jean-Philippe Gaston of Cove Cold Bar about his earlier days at home with his family, his travels, and how he had to start from the bottom. Today we continue the conversa ... More >>

  • Blogs

    October 26, 2012

    Openings & Closings: Downtown Derring-Do

    Restaurants and bars are betting on downtown in increasing numbers, as more business owners perform daring feats like -- gasp! -- moving into vacant spaces on Main Street or taking over failed locations with zest and zeal. Now that I've gotten all of the Errol Flynn language out of my system for th ... More >>

  • Blogs

    September 4, 2012

    Before You Mow Your Lawn, Be Sure and Forage Your Dinner

    There are fads, there are trends, and then there are those ideas that are so clearly right and time-honored that we must take notice. Alice Waters started it on the West Coast, and Monica Pope started it on the Gulf Coast - locavorism, sustainability and seasonality. These are ideas that served our ... More >>

  • Blogs

    July 20, 2012

    Upcoming Events: Indo-European Wine Dinners and Mixology Masters

    Calling all milkshake makers: Alamo Drafthouse just announced its first-ever milkshake creation contest. Along with all of the milkshake flavors the movie chain currently sells, it's looking to expand that list by one: a fall flavor-inspired or movie-themed shake will be the next milkshake on the ro ... More >>

  • Dining

    July 19, 2012

    Like That Chain Restaurant?

    Try this local one instead.

  • Calendar

    June 14, 2012
  • Blogs

    May 14, 2012

    5 Food Trends That Aren't Going to Happen Anytime Soon, Seriously, You Guys

    Hot off the heels of the annual National Restaurant Association Show in Chicago, food bloggers and industry outlets are furiously compiling lists of food trends for 2012 and beyond based on displays, samples and wares from the three-day-long trade show. Nation's Restaurant News says that the trendy ... More >>

  • Blogs

    May 3, 2012

    A Little Pork Fat and A Little Red Wine - Just What the Heart Needs

    Sunday night, 20 miles south of Houston, two culinary heavy hitters knocked it out of the park at the Revana Wine Dinner at Killen's Steakhouse. Chef Ronnie Killen and Chef Randy Rucker began preparing weeks in advance, tasting wines and developing recipes to pair perfectly with Revana wines. It w ... More >>

  • Blogs

    March 29, 2012

    Upcoming Throwdowns, Who's Hungry?

    Chefs in Houston love each other, right? Let's test that theory and pit them against each other. Coming up in the next few weeks are two throwdowns fit for true foodies. And trust me when I say, you won't want to miss either of them. Kiss My Grits: A Gulf Coast Throwdown First up on Thursday, Apr ... More >>

  • Blogs

    February 3, 2012

    Upcoming Events: Foraging Food and Cooking Game

    Next weekend: Prepare for all the chicken soup you can nosh.​Attention, DIY-ers and wild food fans: Two upcoming events are right up your paths. Follow chef Randy Rucker down one path for a Tapas on the Trails evening Saturday, February 11, at the Houston Arboretum. The food-filled evening wi ... More >>

  • News

    July 28, 2011

    River Oaks Monster

    Readers react to dramatic high society tale

  • Blogs

    July 22, 2011

    Openings & Closings

    ​The big news this week, of course, was that Randy Rucker is packing up and moving to Houston. Bootsie's will still operate in Tomball under his mother's stewardship, but his new restaurant will be a partnership with pastry chef Chris Leung, located at 5219 Caroline in the Museum District. In ... More >>

  • Blogs

    July 22, 2011

    This Week in Deliciousness

    Calamari is delicious but sad. Just think of all the many-armed hugs that squid will never give.​Welcome back to the weekly roundup here at Eating Our Words, where, thanks to our new Gelatin Piranha™ we bought off of a late-night infomercial, we can now gelatinize an entire cow in under four ... More >>

  • Blogs

    July 21, 2011

    Bootsie's Heritage Cafe to Close, Leaving Tomball for Houston

    The boys are back in town...​In a move that should surprise absolutely no one, given chef Randy Rucker's notoriously short attention span, Bootsie's Cafe is closing at the end of the month. Rucker and company are packing up their chef's knives and moving back inside the Loop, according to a pr ... More >>

  • Blogs

    July 8, 2011

    Openings & Closings: June 2011

    Photo by Katharine ShilcuttAssorted macarons from Petite Sweets.​This is a good time to live in Houston, folks. Never forget it. A week so filled with restaurant openings that it requires three pages (yes, I'm warning you in advance) to discuss should be proof enough of this fact. News that T ... More >>

  • Dining

    May 19, 2011

    Bootsie's Kicks Butt

    Tomball restaurant offering a culinary experience unlike any other.

  • Blogs

    May 12, 2011

    10 Houston Restaurants Every Out-Of-Towner Should Visit

    Photos by Katharine ShilcuttTexas barbecue done right at Gatlin's.​On Wednesday afternoon, I mused that some day I hoped for visitors to Houston to feel as excited about our dining scene as I was about New York City's. The sheer breadth and depth of ethnic and regional cuisines present here is ... More >>

  • Blogs

    April 25, 2011

    Kata Robata Chefs Take Inaugural Kiss My Grits Throwdown Title

    Jason BargasLeft, Kata Robata. Right, Ouisie's.​Grits have been an integral part of my life since I could gum food. Naturally, I was eager to get my gums (and teef) on the grits concoctions at Thursday evening's Kiss My Grits Gulf Coast Throwdown. Young Texans Against Cancer cobbled together H ... More >>

  • Blogs

    February 17, 2011

    James Beard Foundation Recognizes Houston Chefs; Food & Wine Does Too, In Its Own Way

    Should Randy Rucker (seen here working on one of his "tenacity" supper club dinners) have been recognized by Food & Wine?​It's been a week of ups and downs for Houston chefs on the national radar. made a long overdue trip to Houston to recognize a hefty handful of "Rising Stars" ... More >>

  • Blogs

    February 14, 2011

    Houston on the Horizon: Rising Stars Named by

    Chef Manabu Horiuchi of Kata Robata, one of this year's Rising Stars.​I vacillate back and forth between craving attention for our city's culinary efforts and then finding myself annoyed with the attention we do get. Call it the heartburn that comes with having your cake and eating it, too. T ... More >>

  • Dining

    January 6, 2011
  • Blogs

    December 22, 2010

    The 10 Best New Restaurants of 2010

    Which one of our top 10 restaurants landed a spot in the newest edition of GQ?​Trying to select only 10 restaurants out of the dozens that have opened the past year is agonizing. In a good way, of course -- Houston has been fertile ground for innovative and passionate restaurateurs this year. ... More >>

  • Blogs

    December 16, 2010

    American Beautyberry-Infused Gin

    ​A few weeks ago, I attended a class/seminar/expedition with Randy Rucker and the crew from Bootsie's Café out in Tomball. We were there to forage. Before we began our march through the woods, Rucker first offered a few words about the law of respect. Most important among these was to take on ... More >>

  • Blogs

    December 8, 2010

    Recipe: South Texas Asian Pesto

    ​One of the most important things in cooking is learning to let ingredients speak for themselves. Too often, we as cooks take the position of alchemists, laboring under the false belief that we must be transformative, to make things other than what they are, better in some way. When gifted w ... More >>

  • Blogs

    December 2, 2010

    Indigenous Bounties: Foraging with Randy Rucker

    Wood Sorrel. ​Last Sunday, my wife and I woke up early and finally made the trek out to Bootsie's Heritage Café in Tomball, but we weren't there to eat. We were there to work. A few weeks back, Chef Randy Rucker made a titillating offer via Twitter: Come to Tomball and dig around in the woo ... More >>

  • Blogs

    November 12, 2010

    Upcoming Events

    Photo by Troy Fields​Have you ever wanted to play chef for a day in the vast kitchen at Brennan's? Your chance to man the stoves (seen above) is coming up, as Alex Brennan Martin has now revived the Creole restaurant's beloved "Chef For A Day" program. Available only to one person per day (and ... More >>

  • Blogs

    September 1, 2010

    Sampler Plate: This Week In Food Blogs

    Each week, we put together a sampler plate of the most interesting links from both local and national food blogs. Know a blog we should be paying particular attention to? Leave the address in the comments section below. Culture Map: Sarah Rufca asks a question that anyone who deals with group dinin ... More >>

  • Blogs

    August 18, 2010

    Sampler Plate: This Week In Food Blogs

    Each week, we put together a sampler plate of the most interesting links from both local and national food blogs. Know a blog we should be paying particular attention to? Leave the address in the comments section below. Feeding Curiosity: The main reason for following Chef Randy Rucker's blog? Anno ... More >>

  • Blogs

    August 2, 2010

    A Comprehensive Guide to Houston's Food Blogs

    Cartoon does not reflect reality (most of the time).​In a city as large as Houston and with as many culinary options as we're blessed with, it's no surprise that the food blogging community here is large and diverse. Say what you want about food bloggers: that we're arrogant, obtrusive know-i ... More >>

  • Blogs

    July 28, 2010

    Sampler Plate: This Week In Food Blogs

    Each week, we put together a sampler plate of the most interesting links from both local and national food blogs. Know a blog we should be paying particular attention to? Leave the address in the comments section below. Aghastronome: Former contributor to the now-defunct Houstonist, Mary Jane Poorm ... More >>

  • Blogs

    May 26, 2010

    Sampler Plate: This Week In Food Blogs

    Each week, we put together a sampler plate of the most interesting links from both local and national food blogs. Know a blog we should be paying particular attention to? Leave the address in the comments section below. Fork and Cork: Greg Morago reports on the rumors swirling around Textile lately ... More >>

  • Blogs

    May 19, 2010

    Top Five Twitter Food Fights

    ​As Craig Hlavaty briefly discusses in this week's feature on the Twitterverse, the food community has become one of the largest on Twitter. At first, it may seem unusual for members of a a non-tech-oriented community to have become such early adopters of the technology and to have built such ... More >>

  • Blogs

    February 12, 2010

    Openings and Closings

    ​According to My Table, Philippe Schmit has finally inked a deal for his new restaurant's new digs...outside Loop 610. You'll remember that Schmit himself had originally said he'd be moving to an inner loop location and would aim to be open in August. Instead, he's signed a lease in the same c ... More >>

  • Blogs

    January 21, 2010

    Food Fight: Battle Supper Club

    Photo by GroovehouseDessert at a Reality Dinner / Click here for a slideshow​Other cities have had them for years, but -- as with many concepts -- Houston is a bit behind the curve. We're talking about chef-driven, intimate, fiercely modern, multi-course dinners that allow a culinary wild man ... More >>

  • Blogs

    December 17, 2009

    What the Oughts Brought: Top 10 Innovations and Trends

    Photo by Marco VeringaMolecular gastronomy, one of ten major innovations and trends of the last decade.​What funny food trends have marked the last decade? And what innovations do we hope carry us into the middle ages of the millennium? Here are a few things that have kept our tongues wagging. ... More >>

  • Blogs

    October 28, 2009

    Chef Talk: Mother Rucker

    Fabio​Cutting-edge chef Randy Rucker doesn't even have a kitchen. Eating Our Words crashed a private event he booked to get a look at what keeps him the most sought-after renegade around. Eating Our Words: What made you interested in molecular gastronomy? Randy Rucker: I'm not a boxer, so do ... More >>

  • Blogs

    October 27, 2009

    A Vegan Dinner at a Meatatarium

    Photos by Katharine ShilcuttAppetizers: sweet potato chips and truffled carrots, radishes and turnips​Vegans may take our cheese (and milk and meat and butter and even honey), but they may never take...our truffles. This seemed to be the rallying cry on Monday night at Beaver's Ice House as seven ... More >>

  • Blogs

    September 18, 2009

    The Wine Conference: A Chat with Geri Druckman

    ​Next Saturday, Houston will be hosting a home-grown festival unlike any other the city has seen. The Wine Conference will bring together an assortment of food and wine personalities -- both national and local -- along with a high-tech twist that's due in large part to its founder, Geri Druckm ... More >>

  • Blogs

    August 17, 2009

    One Night Only! Pork Belly Madness at Catalan!

    Photo by stu spivak​Monday, Monday, Monday! The battle to beat all battles will be held tonight at Catalan featuring contenders from across the city as they compete to claim the prize of Houston's best pork belly. The third in a series of popular "throwdown" events organized by Jenny Wang ... More >>

  • Blogs

    June 10, 2009

    The Battle Rages On: Fried Chicken Throwdown at Beaver's

    Photos by Katharine ShilcuttRonnie Killen's skillet fried chickenSome had come for the spectacle of it all: 17 different fried chicken dishes, 9 enormous casseroles filled with various macaroni and cheeses, salads and side dishes and desserts enough to feed Alexander's own army. Some had come to obs ... More >>

  • Blogs

    April 1, 2009

    Recession Lunching at Rainbow Lodge

    It's becoming more affordable than ever to dine in our city's finest restaurants, and Rainbow Lodge is no exception to that rule. Three years ago, the long-time Houston institution moved from its original location into a charming rambler on White Oak Bayou just off Ella and is now under the expert g ... More >>

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