When you find yourself in one of these establishments to partake of some tasty vittles (because don't seniors call food "vittles"?), look around and we'll bet the median age is older than 60. If you enjoy the geriatric crowd as we do, check out some of these Houston traditions.
1. Cleburne Cafeteria It should be no surprise that a cafeteria is the top spot to find the aging population of Houston. Anything with a steam table and friendly people serving food, often with latex gloves and hairnets, seems to be a magnet for the Social Security-collecting crowd. Cleburn Cafeteria has been aroundmore than 60 years, and there are plenty of people who have been eating their liver and onions here since the day it opened. With selections like meatloaf, turkey and dressing, chicken pie, chicken and dumplings, fried catfish and so many other comfort classics, the blue hairs know how to do it right, and we're just behind them.
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2. Shanghai River This Houston institution even named a dish after our favorite old dude ever -- may he rest in peace -- Marvin Zindler. One of his supposed favorite places to eat was Shanghai River, so we know it has a spotless kitchen. The food is from family recipes passed down through two generations of chefs. They even won the Marvin Zindler Blue Ribbon Award (to honor those restaurants with consistently clean kitchens) from 1999 - 2007. Appropriately, the owner's father's original restaurant in Taiwan was named Song-Hur Loh, which represents longevity. Maybe there's something we don't know about their General Tso's chicken.
3. Barbecue Inn Who doesn't like a waitress that calls you "honey" and means it? Also, the colossal fried chicken attracts more than just seniors (although they make up a large portion of the visitors). In addition to the crazy-good fried chicken, the fried shrimp is also spot-on. If the older crowds don't go there for the familiarity or the fried chicken and shrimp, we can only guess they love the condiment trays used for the baked potato toppings...or the melba toast.
4. Christie's There's something about fried shrimp and seniors -- they seem to go together like a horse and carriage. Christie's has amazing fried shrimp. With a storied history spanning 90 years, Christie's was originally a small food and drink stand on the Galveston waterfront, which then moved to the Medical Center in 1939 and to its current location on Westheimer in 1979. People of any age can head to Christie's for a classic seafood dinner, including dishes like Oysters Rockefeller, shrimp cocktail, Greek salads, fried shrimp, hand-breaded onion rings and any kind of seafood platter imaginable.
5. Ouisie's Table The older River Oaks crowd's favorite hangout for good, hearty, tasty food with the "how exactly do you pronounce that?" name resides on San Felipe. With interesting dishes featuring classic flavor combinations, it's just eclectic enough to bring out the old money, but familiar enough that you know you're getting a great meal. It also helps that the namesake and founder, Elouise Adams Jones, is a familiar name and face among Houston's classic cuisine fans and is, well, a tiny bit older herself (but she still looks smokin' hot, in case you were wondering). We're guessing there's quite a few red hat luncheons going on here during any given week.