Patty Melt

We couldn't be more pleased to see a place use "fusion" in its name yet offer nary an Asian dish. Not that Fusion Café (2442 Times Boulevard, 713-522-1884) doesn't adhere to the concept of combining different flavors. The cafe melds Caribbean, Creole and down-home Southern cooking, with the former being the influence behind its signature dish, Fusion Patties ($1.75). Similar to empanadas, these melt-in-your-mouth treats feature Caribbean-spiced ground beef or chicken encased in a fluffy pastry that looks to be infused with saffron. Served right from a warming bin at the bar, these are offered as appetizers, but each large stuffed triangle is filling enough for a light lunch, especially when paired with greens and Jamaican rice in coconut milk. Ya, mon, it's a party on your palate.
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Melanie Knight