There was a period of time when going to the massive, two-story Cafe Adobe complex at Westheimer and Shepherd meant devoting at least three hours of your day -- if not more -- in near-prostrate devotion to its super-strong margaritas and sprawling rooftop patio.
Although those days are past for me, I still felt a twinge of sadness when I first heard the news that the beloved Tex-Mex restaurant would be closing in the wake of Cafe Adobe owner Scott Cragin's death, both to provide for Cragin's family and to allow CEO Bob Borochoff to concentrate on its other Houston locations. Since 1981, the ever-expanding restaurant has supplied the city with thousands of nights spent watching the sun set over downtown with a trusty basket of chips and salsa at the ready as you gaze out, king-like, over the jumbled expanse of Montrose below.
"After 32 successful years, it's time to move the River Oaks Cafe Adobe on to a new location that will further expand the Café Adobe brand," said Borochoff in a press release yesterday. "I know that over the years, people have met their friends and family here and celebrated birthdays, anniversaries, graduations and more."
In its place at 2111 Westheimer, Hines will be constructing an "upscale residential rental project" that will undoubtedly cause additional congestion at the already notorious intersection. But before Houston loses another icon in the name of "progress," we asked our readers to share their favorite Cafe Adobe memories -- of the patio, the glass atrium, the food and the parties.
@eatingourwords Spending half of my 20s stumbling home through the parking lot to my apartment across the street. *my glory days/daze*
— Kelley_O (@Kelley_O) May 6, 2013
— ziggy smogdust (@ziggysmogdust) May 6, 2013
— @agirlinthesouth (@AGirlintheSouth) May 6, 2013
And on the Eating...Our Words Facebook page, readers chimed in:
"Roof top patio," wrote Vargo Williams. "And the table for two by the fireplace! Love their margaritas, salsa, queso and atmosphere! Even the downstairs patio is great!"
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"Having margaritas there with an old Whole Foods co-worker with whom I was "on the down low!" reminisced Clara Randle. Adding to the mischievous memories, Robert Strangways Jr. recalled a friend "being kicked out for being too drunk on the roof."
Finished fan Robin Wong: "Always great food and great service. I'll miss it."