Subject:

Restaurants and Food Services

  • Blogs

    July 25, 2014

    Consumer Reports Names the Best and Worst Fast Food Restaurants in America, and the Results are Surprising

    Last week we published an article about good, old-fashioned, roadside-style Texas burgers, and in this story, we might have insinuated that there are a lot of crappy fast food burgers out there. One commenter called us out on it, writing: "I would also argue that McDonald's does not serve a poor exc ... More >>

  • Blogs

    July 23, 2014

    Chef Chat, Part 1: Lynette Hawkins of Giacomo's Cibo e Vino

    Chef Lynette Hawkins had already made a name for herself in Houston years before opening her casual Italian restaurant, Giacomo's Cibo e Vino. Hawkins' prior endeavor was La Mora Cucina Toscana. She operated it for 16 years before shutting it down for some very sensible reasons. (We'll cover those d ... More >>

  • Blogs

    March 17, 2014

    Houston Pastry Chef Injured in SXSW Crash

    On March 13, a drunk driver barreled into a crowd of concert-goers at the SXSW music festival in Austin, killing two people and injuring another 23 people. One of those injured is the pastry chef at Mark's American Cuisine, Gracie Nguyen. Nguyen, 23, was in Austin for the music festival, and 21-yea ... More >>

  • Dining

    February 27, 2014

    Meet the First Families of Houston Food

    Connect the dots and you’ll find our city’s restaurant scene has been dominated by a few hardworking culinary pioneers and their descendants.

  • Blogs

    February 4, 2014

    Minimum-Wage Increase Could Mean Higher Restaurant Prices

    Last Tuesday during President Obama's State of the Union address, fast-food workers and their fellow minimum-wage workers were an important topic. Obama called for the minimum wage for federal workers to be raised from $7.25 an hour to $10.10 an hour. He also called for an increase in the minimum wa ... More >>

  • Blogs

    January 28, 2014

    The First Families of Houston Food: Why We Eat the Way We Eat in H-Town

    Houston is a town inundated with great restaurants, but in tracing the city's history, you discover that many of the big names in the restaurant industry are related to each other in some way, whether by blood or business. Some families have continued to stick with their own, too, but to live and c ... More >>

  • Blogs

    September 4, 2013

    Top 5 New Fast Food Menu Items You Should Try

    Crazy concoctions and brand new menu items seem to be popping up in just about every fast food restaurant these days. Throughout the summer, many quick-service chains introduced new items in hopes of luring customers. After last week's announcement of several new menu items, we decided to put togeth ... More >>

  • Blogs

    April 5, 2013

    Young Woman Raped in Stall By Registered Sex Offender Enlists Rusty Hardin to Sue TGI Friday's for Negligence

    Nearly two years after claiming she was raped in the stall of a TGI Friday's in Webster, Texas, by one of its employees, a young woman is suing the restaurant for negligence. The woman, who was 17 at the time of the rape and is referred to as Jane Doe within the lawsuit, the man who raped her regist ... More >>

  • Blogs

    March 27, 2013

    Healthy Fast Food Menu Items Can Lure and Deceive Consumers

    If you're on a diet, or are at least trying to eat healthier, you probably don't frequent fast food restaurants throughout the day. A typical fast food menu isn't full of healthy and nutritious items. However, a few fast food chains recently began to add lighter options to menus, due in part to a re ... More >>

  • Blogs

    March 26, 2013

    Clumsy Butcher: Bobby Heugel and Company Announce New Restaurant Group and New Downtown Tequila Bar

    It was bound to happen. After opening so many concepts in only four years -- and taking over operations of two other longtime Houston institutions -- Bobby Heugel, Kevin Floyd and Michael Burnett have announced the creation of restaurant group Clumsy Butcher to hem everything into one tidy package. ... More >>

  • Blogs

    February 28, 2013

    Battle Fast Food Fish Sandwich: Which One Should You Have During Lent?

    With fish being a choice food throughout the 40 days of Lent, many fast food chain restaurants have added a fish sandwich to their menus, or at least brought them back. I decided to try five fish sandwiches and determine which ones are the best based on overall quality, taste and price. You might b ... More >>

  • Blogs

    December 25, 2012

    Your Stress-Free Holiday Dining Guide: Where to Eat on Christmas Day 2012

    The presents are unwrapped, the place is destroyed and the pine needles from the Christmas tree have formed a fine carpet throughout the house. The last thing you want to do is dirty up a bunch of dishes cooking after all that. So why not let one of the many Houston restaurants open on Christmas Day ... More >>

  • Blogs

    December 24, 2012

    Your Stress-Free Holiday Dining Guide: Where to Eat on Christmas Day 2012

    The presents are unwrapped, the place is destroyed and the pine needles from the Christmas tree have formed a fine carpet throughout the house. The last thing you want to do is dirty up a bunch of dishes cooking after all that. So why not let one of the many Houston restaurants open on Christmas Day ... More >>

  • Blogs

    December 21, 2012

    Your Stress-Free Holiday Dining Guide: Where to Eat on Christmas Day 2012

    The presents are unwrapped, the place is destroyed and the pine needles from the Christmas tree have formed a fine carpet throughout the house. The last thing you want to do is dirty up a bunch of dishes cooking after all that. So why not let one of the many Houston restaurants open on Christmas Day ... More >>

  • Blogs

    November 15, 2012

    Ron Chen, Owner and "Head Coach" at Rattan Pan-Asian Bistro

    What he does Ron Chen is quick to note something right up front: "I am not a chef. I'm like a coach. As in, I don't play basketball but I coach the game, you know?" The owner of Rattan Pan-Asian Bistro, Chen has already put in a lifetime in the restaurant business and has no plans on stopping now. ... More >>

  • Calendar

    June 14, 2012
  • Blogs

    May 22, 2012

    Federal Lawsuit Filed in Corpus Christi Over Lobster Baked Potato

    It's the clash of the Longhorn Steakhouse titans down south in Corpus Christi, where a local chain of steakhouses with a similar name to the national LongHorn Steakhouse restaurants has filed a federal lawsuit over a lobster baked potato. It's more complicated than that, of course, but the lobster ... More >>

  • Blogs

    May 22, 2012

    Why Restaurants Matter (and Why You Should Tip Generously)

    Last week's post Corkage: A Privilege, Not a Right generated a heated comment thread. "Are you f'n kidding me?" asked "Corkage Smorkage" rhetorically. "Offer your server a taste of your wine." ???? I'm already paying them a BS "fee" to open it. What's next, offering them a taste of my food so the ... More >>

  • Blogs

    March 8, 2012

    Grand Forks, North Dakota, Gets an Olive Garden

    Since I first read the Grand Forks Herald article last night -- "Long-awaited Olive Garden receives warm welcome" -- it's made its way around the Internet as an object of fascination faster than faked cell phone pictures of Christina Hendricks's breasts. "An Onion-worthy, rave review of...Olive Gar ... More >>

  • Blogs

    May 30, 2011

    Comment of the Day

    ​Joanna O'Leary had a delicious Italian meal at Fratelli's and decided that the restaurant was worth driving outside the loop for. Which gave commenter Laurie pause: Heaven forbid! Outside the Loop! Joanna get over it. It is all of 5 min outside the Loop. A majority of Houston lives outside ... More >>

  • Blogs

    March 17, 2011

    Restaurant Lawyer David Jordan on Tip Pools and Illegal Immigration

    ​David Jordan is a partner in the Houston office of Littler Mendelson, an international law firm specializing in labor and employment law. Before he was a lawyer, Jordan worked in the restaurant industry for several years: flipping burgers at Burger King when he was in high school; working in ... More >>

  • Blogs

    January 3, 2011

    Tilman Fertitta an "Executive to Watch" in 2011

    This is Tilman Fertitta's three-story yacht. How's your 2011 looking so far?​Houston's Tilman Fertitta made a short list of restaurant executives to watch in 2011, in part because of his recent acquisition of a trio of new restaurant chains: The Oceanaire, Claim Jumper and Bubba Gump Shrimp Co ... More >>

  • Dining

    December 30, 2010
  • Blogs

    December 28, 2010

    Where Are We Drinking?

    A pool table and some long neck beers, hazy windows and boozy customers. It's all good here, at one of Houston's best dive bars in town. Think you know where we're shooting pool drinking this week? ​Leave your best guess in the comments section below.

  • Blogs

    August 11, 2010

    Diving Into Houston's Best Dive Bars

    ​Although the number of "true" dive bars is shrinking by the day, that didn't stop our own John Nova Lomax from tracking down the best ones left in the city and covering them in last October's feature story, "Dive Bars: A Handcrafted Tour of the Best, Most Obscure Places to Lean on a Stool in ... More >>

  • Calendar

    July 1, 2010

    Live at the MGM Grand Garden Arena: Brock Lesnar vs. Shane Carwin

    The UFC starts the fireworks a day early with a Live at the MGM Grand Garden Arena bout between two heavyweight contenders

  • Blogs

    April 9, 2010

    Health Dept. Roundup: 77077 to 77099

    ​This week on Health Department Roundup, we finally complete our systematic tour of Houston's zip codes. This last leg was pretty smooth sailing, as we made it all the way from 77077 to 77099 with very few offenders. We also checked in on the non-sequential zip codes that make up recently anne ... More >>

  • Blogs

    March 17, 2010

    The Yelp Effect

    ​Although there was no shortage of food-related panels at the Interactive portion of South by Southwest (SXSWi) this year, none were as insightful or as incendiary as The Yelp Effect, a frank discussion on the effect that online reviews and criticisms have on the restaurant industry. Led by A ... More >>

  • Blogs

    December 30, 2009

    A Decade of Landry's

    Photo by B. Tse​Whether you love them or hate them, you can't escape them -- not even if you leave Houston. Over the past ten years, Landry's has become a household name. Besides owning such well-known restaurants as Saltgrass Steak House, Aquarium, and Vic and Anthony's, Landry's has dabbled ... More >>

  • Blogs

    November 11, 2009

    Health Department Roundup: Cafeteria Edition

    ​ As with other restaurants, a cafeteria's quality varies, depending on management and food freshness standards, which -- as habitual readers of this column know -- often has little to do with menu pricing. The shadow of the Houston health inspector has recently fallen upon the following:The D ... More >>

  • Blogs

    October 14, 2009

    Dive Bar-ology 101: What A Dive Bar Is Not

    ​These days, there are a lot of misconceptions about what constitutes a dive bar. Going by lists on sites like Yelp and Citysearch, and especially this laughable list from the Houston Chronicle, apparently any drinking establishment that does not sport bottle service, valet parking and a velvet r ... More >>

  • Blogs

    October 14, 2009

    Dive Bar Eats: At Best, A Mixed Bag

    Photo by Option ThisAre questionable jars of pickled eggs the most you can hope for at Houston's best dive bars?​This week's feature is all about Houston's best dive bars. Dive bar food in Houston is a pretty hit-and-miss affair. If you lump icehouses in with the overall class of dive bars, as ... More >>

  • Blogs

    August 6, 2008
  • Blogs

    December 19, 2007

    Anthony Bourdain on Illegal Immigrant Labor in U.S. Kitchens

    While working on this week’s feature about Hugo Ortega, I needed someone in the restaurant industry to explain the situation honestly. Understandably, no restaurant owner in Houston wanted to come out and say he was hiring illegals. So I e-mailed Tony Bourdain, who is not only a television star an ... More >>

  • Blogs

    May 4, 2007
  • Dining

    June 10, 2004

    Dry-Aged Discrimination

    What grade of beef are the steaks at The Capital Grille?

  • Best of Houston

    September 25, 2003
  • Dining

    February 6, 2003

    Dining by Demographic

    Fleming's Prime Steakhouse serves up excellent renditions of the nation's most average food and wine preferences

  • Dining

    November 14, 2002

    Steak House Shuffle

    Vallone's takes a break just in time to give Fleming's a shot

  • Best of Houston

    September 26, 2002
  • Best of Houston

    September 26, 2002

    Best Stuffed Mushrooms

    Istanbul Grill & Deli

  • Dining

    September 27, 2001

    Chain for Fools

    Houston versus Dallas: We're family-run; they're chained up.

  • Dining

    May 17, 2001

    Play Ball!

    Sports bars and gay bars cater to a similar crowd: Guys who watch buff men

  • Dining

    January 18, 2001

    Stirred and Shaken

    Champps Americana's Manhattan

  • Dining

    November 16, 2000

    Stirred and Shaken

    P.F. Chang's mai tai

  • Dining

    August 3, 2000

    Attack of the Killer Developers

    Restaurants pop up in Midtown

  • News

    April 1, 1999

    Pushed Around

    For City Hall, one downtown cart vendor may be too many

  • Dining

    June 19, 1997

    Capital Idea

    Is one more palace of red meat one too many? If it's the Capital Grille, the answer is no.

  • News

    June 30, 1994

    Food Fight

    The Landrys came to Houston with good food and good ideas. But a good family squabble let Tilman Fertitta step in and carve himself an empire.

  • Film

    January 13, 1994
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