Here's a look at this week's hottest culinary happenings:
Happy Hour at International Smoke
The hot new restaurant from bestselling cookbook author and lifestyle expert Ayesha Curry and celebrity chef Michael Mina has introduced happy hour. Head to International Smoke, 800 Sorella, on Mondays through Fridays from 4 to 6 p.m. (or hit reverse happy hour from 9 p.m. to close) to indulge in $1 oysters on-the-half-shell, $2 red curry cornbread and daily bao, $5 Tokyo-style karaage, and $9 Cuban pulled pork sandwiches, or check out the Ribs & Rocks specials, pairing ribs with barbecue oysters for $15 to $28. Select drinks run from $3 to $8, including beer, wine, house punch and pickle backs.
Lunch at BCK: Kitchen & Cocktail Adventures
BCK: Kitchen & Cocktail Adventures, 933 Studewood, has expanded its offerings, now serving lunch, along with weekly specials that include a $2 Taco Tuesday and Wednesday Pasta Night with half-off all bottles of wine and champagne. Lunch will be served Monday through Friday from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m., with highlights including a tuna melt on Texas toast, sweet and sour meatball banh mi, tomato soup with grilled cheese, and steak quesadilla with hand-carved ribeye. BCK also offers brunch on Saturday and Sunday and Happy Hour Monday-Saturday from 3 to 6 p.m.
Wagyu Fajitas at Killen’s Barbecue
In addition to other new dinner items at Killen’s Barbecue, 3613 East Broadway, diners can now order the latest Ronnie Killen creation: Snake River Farms Wagyu beef fajitas, cooked over mesquite wood. Fajita plates feature one-quarter pound of beef, accompanied by three flour tortillas, rice, beans, pico de gallo, sour cream and cheese. Get a single order for $14, or fajitas-for-two (half-pound) for $21.
All month long
National Sandwich Month at East Hampton Sandwich Co.
East Hampton Sandwich Co., 4444 Westheimer, 907 Westheimer, is celebrating National Sandwich Month by adding its culinary team's first limited time offer, the Il Soprano. Available through August, the sandwich is crafted with prosciutto de parma, country style ham, smoked provolone, Italian herbs, arugula, Roma tomato, pesto aioli and a summer tomato vinaigrette.
August specials at Ooh La La
Ooh La La, 23920 Westheimer, 20155 Park Row, 770 West Sam Houston Parkway North, is celebrating August with Snickerdoodle cupcakes and sugary breakfast favorites…for dessert. Get Cap’n Crunch and Doughnut Macarons, plus the cupcake of the month, all throughout August. Don’t forget, Macaron Mondays are still going strong through Labor Day, offering macarons for $1 each up to a dozen per person (regularly $2.25 each); and all jumbo cupcakes are two for $5 on Tuesdays through Labor Day (regularly $3.75 each).
Houston Restaurant Weeks
Houston Restaurant Weeks is back, running now through Monday, September 3, and raising money for The Houston Food Bank. More than 250 area restaurants are expected to participate this year — including longtime favorites like Café Annie and Backstreet Café to exciting newcomers like Maison Pucha Bistro, Poitín and International Smoke. Each will be offering prix fixe meals for brunch ($20), lunch ($20), and/or dinner ($35-$45), and every meal sold will aid local hunger relief charities.
Wednesday, August 8
August Wine Tasting at Rainbow Lodge
Rainbow Lodge, 2011 Ella, will host its August Wine Tasting—featuring the wines of Napa and Sonoma Counties—from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. Tickets are $35 per person in advance, $40 day of, including four tastes of wine, four of the season's tastes from chef Mark Schmidt, tax and service. Call 713-861-8666.
Wednesday through Tuesday, August 21
Hatch Chile Festival at Central Market
Central Market, 3815 Westheimer, is kicking up the heat with its 23rd annual Hatch Chile Festival, running Wednesday, August 8 through Tuesday, August 21. The store will celebrate the world-famous green chile pepper with a variety of in-store events, demos and classes, products, recipes and more. Events include cooking classes like Hatch Favorites (August 8), Hatch Steakhouse (Saturday, August 11), and A Green Chile Brunch (Thursday, August 16).
Thursday, August 9
Thursday Night Takeover at Fluff Bake Bar
Fluff Bake Bar, 314 Gray, continues its "Thursday Night Take Over" series in which guest chefs from around the country create a three to four item available a la carte from 6 to 9 p.m. This month, the series features chef Claudette Zepeda-Wilkins of El Jardin in San Diego. No tickets or reservations are required, though four “chef’s table” seats will be available for purchase each month at 6 and 7:30 p.m. Masson will create a special dessert to complement each chef’s menu, with optional wine pairings and specialty beer from Houston’s Saint Arnold Brewing Company. Ten percent of all proceeds will benefit Share Our Strength’s No Kid Hungry program.
Lapostolle Wine Dinner at Américas
Guests are invited to enjoy a Lapostolle Wine Dinner at Américas, 2040 West Gray, offered from 7 to 10 p.m. for $64.95 per person. Dine on dishes including black bean and chorizo empanada, roasted baby beets with achiote grilled shrimp, smoked St. Louis-style ribs with jumbo lump crab, grilled lamb chops en mole verde, and tequila bread pudding.
Friday, August 10
Date Night Cooking Class at Brennan’s of Houston
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Learn the art of Creole at a Date Night Cooking Class at Brennan’s of Houston, 3300 Smith, from 6:30 to 9 p.m. The presented menu includes deviled crab-stuffed mirliton, Creole-spiced redfish with jambalaya, and a bananas Foster-style, cream cheese-stuffed crepe. Cost is $150 per couple, plus tax and gratuity.
Saturday, August 11
Chile Relleno Class at Sylvia’s Enchilada Kitchen
Chef-owner Sylvia Casares will share her secrets to chile relleno at this hands-on cooking class held at Sylvia’s Enchilada Kitchen, 1140 Eldridge, from 1 to 4 p.m. Guests will learn to make beef or chile relleno, plus special toppings, for $65 per person.