The Balkans

  • Blogs

    October 3, 2014

    College and Pro Football: This Weekend's Best Bets

    A 5-1 week of prognosticating is like an elite quarterback in the NFL. It can cover up a lot of future mistakes. Two weeks ago, I put up a nice 5-1 week, and began feeling pretty good about myself, like maybe I was turning the corner and shaking a slump that had gone back to the end of the 2012 sea ... More >>

  • Blogs

    June 2, 2014

    Dish of the Week: Gazpacho

    From classic comfort foods to regional standouts and desserts, we'll be sharing a new recipe with you each week. See the complete list of recipes at the end of this post. This week, we're looking at a classic cold soup from southern Spain: gazpacho. A common dish in Andalusian cuisine during the h ... More >>

  • Blogs

    April 25, 2014

    Eating Through the Eastern Bloc in Houston

    When people think about food from the former Soviet Union, the first two ingredients that come to mind are dill and sour cream. But there is much more to the diverse cuisines of the USSR and former Soviet Satellites and Houston has the Russian, Polish, Czech and Bosnian eateries to prove it. Let's ... More >>

  • Film

    March 6, 2014

    300: Rise of an Empire Offers More Bloody Hunks — and Eva Green

    There's something for everyone in this XXL sequel.

  • Film

    February 27, 2014

    The Bronzed Age

    300 sequel offers more bloody hunks — and Eva Green.

  • Culture

    January 23, 2014

    The MasterMinds 2014 Winners Revealed

    A photographer who has decided to take a panoramic view of the world, a choreographer and a group of musicians are this year's winners.

  • Blogs

    January 3, 2014

    Top 5 Saffron Dishes To Try in Houston

    Saffron, whose scarlet threads infuse a dish with a unique salty-sweet fragrance (as well as a warm tangerine hue) can be an elusive spice. Its costliness and pungent strength prevents chefs from using it willy-nilly, which makes its occasional appearances even more exciting and enticing. Saffron ... More >>

  • Film

    August 8, 2013
  • Blogs

    July 19, 2013

    Chef Chat, Part 3: Jean-Philippe Gaston of Cove Takes Us on a Trip Around the World

    This week, we've been talking to Jean-Philippe Gaston of Cove, one of those under-the-radar chefs who likes to let his work speak for itself. Before we start our tasting, I notice his shelf full of cookbooks. Gaston pulls one down from the pile, the gold macrame- colored binding slightly ripped. He ... More >>

  • Blogs

    July 12, 2013

    The 5 Best Things to Eat or Drink This Weekend: Sipping Your Way Around The World, Feasting With The Pope & More

    Around the World in 80 Sips @ Minute Maid Park Friday, 6:30-9:30 p.m. 501 Crawford Street For the second year, Bottlenotes presents Around the World in 80 Sips where you will have the opportunity to sample more than 80 different wines from a variety of countries, like New Zealand, South Africa, Fra ... More >>

  • Blogs

    June 27, 2013

    Best Poolside Wine? German Riesling, Baby!

    As Americans' perceptions of and relationship with fine wine continue to evolve, wine lovers in this country continue to expand the realm of fine wine and how they "apply" the increasing number of great labels that make it to their markets. Poolside, where "white Zin" and wine coolers once dominate ... More >>

  • Blogs

    May 14, 2013

    Here, Eat This: A Beginner's Guide to Ethiopian Cuisine

    People unfamiliar with African cuisines often tend to lump them all in together: East African, West African, North African...what's the difference? We don't lump French and Spanish food together simply because they share a border, however, nor do we regard Indian and Chinese as the same because they ... More >>

  • Blogs

    February 21, 2013

    The Rocks Off 100: Felipe Galvan Of Los Skarnales

    Welcome to the Rocks Off 100, our portrait gallery of the most compelling profiles and personalities in the far-flung Houston music community -- a lot more than just musicians, but of course they're in there too. See the entire Rocks Off 100 at this link. Los Skarnales frontman Felipe Galvan is q ... More >>

  • Dining

    January 10, 2013

    Raw Materials at Cove

    The raw fish and raw meat here are so delicately and deliciously rendered, you might think about giving up on the whole fire thing.

  • Calendar

    April 12, 2012
  • Blogs

    February 7, 2012

    Five Great Middle Finger Moments In Music History

    Monday morning, the Internet was awash in consternation and jpegs after M.I.A. flashed her middle finger during Madonna's Super Bowl halftime performance Sunday, meaning Janet Jackson is finally off the hook after all these years. To be honest, Rocks Off watched the entire halftime show and must hav ... More >>

  • Blogs

    January 20, 2012

    Odd Pair: What Wine Do You Serve with Your Baked Potato?

    Baked potatoes at our house are much more than a meal. They are a religion. We don't just do sour cream. We do sour cream-infused with freshly ground horseradish, a kiss of white wine, and kosher salt. We don't do "bacon bits." We do crumbled, crispy, center-cut bacon that's been fried the day bef ... More >>

  • Blogs

    December 7, 2011

    Top 5 Gifts for Wine Lovers

    Photo by Jeremy Parzen.Decanters by Riedel take wine service to a higher level of aesthetic pleasure. ​If you're ever invited to dine in someone's home in France, please don't bring a bottle of wine. Nothing will spur a French host to recoil in abject dishonor and displeasure than the gift of ... More >>

  • Blogs

    October 19, 2011

    Tasting Notes: This Week in Wine Blogs

    ​Vintage Texas: Ask any wine lover or wine professional and they'll tell you the very same thing: The greatest thing about wine is how it brings folks together. And that's exactly what happened when former All-American football player and NFL veteran Alphonse Daotson called up Russ Kane, the ... More >>

  • Music

    September 15, 2011
  • Blogs

    June 2, 2011

    Food Fight: Box Lunch

    Matthew DresdenLe Mistral's box lunch, with grilled chicken panini and cream of tomato soup. Perhaps the best deal in Houston.​If you google the phrase "box lunch history," virtually all the results are for lunch boxes and the fascinating history thereof. (Check out the Smithsonian's photo op ... More >>

  • Music

    May 5, 2011


    Anderson Fair alumna Lucinda Williams returns to Houston.

  • Blogs

    April 14, 2011

    Canned Champagne: For All Your Picnic Needs

    ​Alright, so Sofia Mini isn't technically champagne. It's a sparkling Blanc de Blancs from California made with a blend of Pinot Blanc, Sauvignon Blanc and Muscat grapes. But for the purposes of this post, as well as ease of description, I like to call it champagne in a can. Last year, I did ... More >>

  • Blogs

    February 9, 2011

    25 Famous Bands' Less Famous Previous Names

    ​As promised, here are the answers to Rocks Off's "Original Band Name" quiz from Tuesday. John St. Lee, if you'd care to email us, we'll see what we can do about getting you a prize. Do you like Devo? 1. Chicago: At about 25 or 6 to 4, the Windy City jazz-rockers realized The Big Thing sucked ... More >>

  • Culture

    January 6, 2011
  • Blogs

    November 19, 2010

    Chances Closing This Saturday; To Become "High-End Restaurant" With a "Superstar Chef"

    Craig Hlavaty​Eating Our Words is always happy to welcome new restaurants to town -- especially in our own neighborhood -- but at the expense of the city's few live music venues (see: Numbers) and now its only lesbian bar? Montrose nightlife staple Chances is shutting down this weekend, accor ... More >>

  • Blogs

    November 16, 2010

    Royal Wedding: The Five Hottest Royal Brides In History

    Hair Balls was positively ecstatic to learn that Prince William is getting hitched to longtime girlfriend Kate Middleton. Although the wedding isn't planned until 2011, we're already worrying over what to wear, and what to get the happy couple (we're pretty sure they'll register at Target). But in t ... More >>

  • Blogs

    November 1, 2010

    Ingredient of the Week: Pomegranate

    ​What is it? The word pomegranate was derived from the Latin words "pomum" (apple) and "granatus" (seeded) - and if you've ever seen one opened up, you know this is an apt description. Mostly grown for the U.S. market in Californian orchards for their juice, a few of the intact fruits make it ... More >>

  • Blogs

    October 25, 2010

    $5 Awesome: Murry Attaway's In Thrall

    Rocks Off has picked up some CDs over the years at prices so low we think that it would've been less insulting to the artists if we had stolen them. Some of these have become our favorite albums, and in this column we'll tell you what they are and why! ​Back in the days when Rocks Off's main ... More >>

  • Culture

    October 14, 2010
  • Calendar

    September 9, 2010

    Arianna Huffington

    The Lady of the Left brings her newest book to Houston

  • Blogs

    August 9, 2010

    Wine of the Week: Coppola Sofia Blanc de Blancs

    ​What does Francis Ford Coppola do well other than direct movies? You guessed it, you little oenophile/movie geek, you. Yes, Coppola makes some damn delicious wines in addition to creating some of the most iconic American movies ever to grace the silver screen. This canned concoction, however, ... More >>

  • Blogs

    June 11, 2010

    World Cup 2010: These Teams Will Make It Out Of The Group Stage. Guaranteed

    Now THAT was a USA World Cup squad​The 2010 edition of the FIFA World Cup is finally here. Thirty-two teams made it to the big dance to see just who is the best in the world. Realistically though, only a handful of teams have a shot of winning the cup. It's all going to come down to matchups ... More >>

  • Blogs

    May 31, 2010

    Give Me No Man's Land: 5 Songs For The Fallen

    ​Today is Memorial Day, and Rocks Off would like to honor our brave and beloved dead as we honor everything - through music. At no time in American history have there not been men and women in life-threatening danger trying to protect us, whether it was a declared war or not. This is a sacrifice w ... More >>

  • Blogs

    February 16, 2010

    The Ultimate Stuffed Cabbage

    ​My mother made stuffed cabbage; my grandmother made stuffed cabbage. My earliest food memories involve stuffed cabbage (we Ruthenians call it holupki). And as you might expect, I have always preferred stuffed cabbage made exactly the way my mom and grandma made it -- beef and rice rolls in ca ... More >>

  • Calendar

    August 13, 2009


    The murder of peace activist Gregoris Lambrakis retold

  • Calendar

    April 9, 2009

    Jesse Lott and Javier de Villota

    Two artists who split their time between Houston and Spain share a vision

  • Blogs

    March 19, 2009

    SXSW Journal: Wild Moccasins

    [Note: Rocks Off asked a few Houston bands to keep track of their SXSW itineraries for us. This is Wild Moccasins singer/guitarist Cody Swann's report.]We got into Austin Tuesday night and woke up early to play at Club 1808 around 11 a.m. for the Rancho Relaxo day party. We played a short set to the ... More >>

  • Dining

    December 25, 2008
  • Calendar

    June 26, 2008

    Mediterranean Tour with Chef Emily Swantner

    Try the chef’s “tweaked” recipes

  • Blogs

    June 19, 2008

    Summer Drinks: Greek Frappe

    The story that I heard while living in Greece was that, in 1957, Nestle's was marketing an instant chocolate milk drink to the Greek market and giving away free cocktail shakers. This gave one of their Greek executives an idea on how to penetrate the Greek market with Nestle's instant coffee: Ice, ... More >>

  • Blogs

    May 19, 2008

    Over the Weekend: Radiohead, Gyro Eating, Tom Jones Memorial and Astros

    This was a weekend of opposites. Hot sun and cool breezes. Slick pop and sloppy dining. Death and rebirth. Let's get to it. Radiohead in the Woodlands The Brits returned to Cynthia Woods Mitchell Pavilion on Saturday, May 17. We brought back words and pictures. World Gyro Eating Championship ... More >>

  • Dining

    July 6, 2006

    Branzini with Bouzouki

    Alexander the Great Greek Restaurant brings you the best of old and new Greek cuisine

  • Calendar

    June 8, 2006
  • Dining

    September 27, 2001

    Stirred and Shaken

    Old Heidelberg's Special

  • Dining

    December 7, 2000

    Today's Horoscope

    You'll meet a creative Aries who will shake up your traditional ideas

  • News

    August 26, 1999
  • Film

    June 5, 1997
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