Things To Do

This Week in Houston Food Events: Brunch, Pho and Oktoberfest Bier

New River Oaks District spot Ouzo Bay debuts brunch this Sunday.
New River Oaks District spot Ouzo Bay debuts brunch this Sunday. Photo by Kirsten Gilliam

Here's a look at this week's hottest culinary happenings:

Tuesday, September 24

Food Apartheid Dinner Series Finale Garden Party at Indigo

Collaborative culinary fundraiser Food Apartheid Dinner Series (F.A.D.S) comes to an end with a finale garden party at Indigo, 517 Berry, on Tuesday, September 24 at 6 p.m. From chefs Jonny Rhodes (Indigo), Chris Williams (Lucille’s), Dominick Lee (Poitin), and Dawn Burrell (Kulture), the series seeks to raise awareness and funds for the city’s growing food desert epidemic. The finale event will be free and open to the surrounding public in the Trinity Gardens community, showcasing live cooking demos and food education demonstrations, as well as live music, games, and rotating paella and whole roasting stations.

Wednesday, September 25

Whiskey Wednesday at Bosscat Kitchen & Libations

Bosscat Kitchen & Libations, 4310 Westheimer, will host a Whiskey Wednesday tasting event and dinner with Basil Hayden's Distillery from 7 to 9 p.m. Guests can enjoy a coursed chef-inspired meal, tasting flight of Basil Hayden's favorite expressions, special gifts from the distillery, hands-on cocktail crafting demonstrations, raffle prizes and more. Tickets are $75.

Thursday, September 26

National Pancake Day at The Toasted Yolk

All locations of The Toasted Yolk will celebrate National Pancake Day by offering diners the opportunity to order the Astro-nomical Pancake of the Day in support their favorite baseball team (go 'stros!). Any diner that wears their Astros gear can receive a free pancake with purchase.

Wine Tasting at Revival Market

Guests are invited to a Wine Tasting with Coltivare general manager Leonora at Revival Market, 550 Heights, on Thursday, September 26 at 5:30 p.m. The tasting will run through classic wines for fall, including fun Old World-style wines in the form of bubbles, whites, reds and a dessert wine or two, all alongside charcuterie and cheese. Cost is $65 per person. Email [email protected] or 713-880-8463 to reserve a spot.

Pinot for the People at Pappas Bros. Steakhouse Downtown

Pappas Bros. Steakhouse Downtown, 1200 McKinney, will host a Pinot for the People wine tasting on Thursday, September 26 at 5:30 p.m. Pappas’ sommeliers will highlight wines from the classic regions of Burgundy and Sonoma, plus a few under-the-radar producers, alongside hors d’oeuvres like braised oxtail croquette and black truffle gnocchi. Cost is $75 per guest and reservations can be made online. 

Chateau d’Esclans Wine Dinner at Emmaline

Guests are invited to a Chateau d’Esclans wine dinner at Emmaline, 3210 West Dallas at 6:30 p.m. Expect a special guest appearance from winemaker Paul Chevalier, plus eats from salmon carpaccio and burrata bruschetta to shrimp risotto and hazel-chocolate torta. Cost is $95 per guest, plus tax and gratuity. Call 713-523-3210.

Bordeaux Wine Dinner at Rainbow Lodge

Rainbow Lodge, 2011 Ella, will kick off its Fall Series Wine Dinners with a Bordeaux Wine Dinner featuring François Thienpont, beginning with a 6 p.m. reception and followed by a dinner at 6:30 p.m. Cost is $135 plus tax and gratuity. Email [email protected] to reserve your seats.

Journey of Kabobs Dinner at Verandah Progressive Indian Restaurant

A second Journey of Kabobs Dinner will be held at Verandah Progressive Indian Restaurant, 3300 Kirby, at 7 p.m. Created as a tasting-style menu, the dinner will feature ten courses of kabobs paired with a variety of Indian wines and beers. Cost is $110 per person, plus tax and gratuity. Call 281-501-0258 or 832-886-4291 or

Friday, September 27

Fabulous Foodie Fete at Central Market

Central Market, 3815 Westheimer, is turning 25 and to celebrate, the store is hosting a two-week extravaganza now through Tuesday, October 1. On Friday, September 27, guests can enjoy a Fabulous Foodie Fete with live music and samples of some of the store’s longtime favorite dishes, plus a preview of delights to come. The anniversary celebration will take place from 6 to 8:30 p.m.

Date Night Cooking Class at Brennan’s

This year's Creolizing Cooking Series comes to a close at Brennan’s of Houston, 3300 Smith, with a focus on "New School Creole". Guests are invited for an extra special evening that combines fun cooking demonstrations with outstanding hospitality, plus a tasty three-course Creole menu with wine pairings. Cost is $150 per couple plus tax and gratuity.

Friday – Saturday

Oktoberfest Houston at The Water Works at Buffalo Bayou Park

Oktoberfest Houston will take place at The Water Works at Buffalo Bayou Park, 105 Sabine, on Friday from 5 to 11 p.m. and Saturday from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. The beer fest puts a Texas twist on traditional Oktoberfest celebrations, offering imported and local drafts, local food vendors like Deutscher Fleischwagen and Dumpling Haus, a lineup of live polka music and a variety games, including the Stein Race, Barrel Roll, Stein Hoisting and Legendary Brat Toss. GA tickets are $25 in advance and $30 at the door, with VIP tickets available for $100 in advance and $125 at the door.

The Galveston Island Shrimp Festival at 23rd and Strand

The Galveston Island Shrimp Festival kicks off with a VIP Party and Fried Shrimp Dinner on Friday ($50, 7:30 to 10 p.m.), followed by the main event — including the Gumbo Stroll ($12-$17), fun run, parade and merchant walkabout —on Saturday (vendors open at 10 a.m., stroll begins at noon). The fun goes down at 23rd and Strand. 

click to enlarge
Enter a Ph? Eating Contest at the first Viet Cultural Festival.
Photo by Thuan La
Saturday, September 28

Viet Cultural Festival at NRG Center

The Viet Cultural Festival will take place at NRG Center, 1 NRG Park, from 9:30 a.m. to 6:30 p.m. Featuring the cultures of Vietnam’s three regions (North, Central and South) through cultural exhibitions, the festival’s theme will surround the Mid-Autumn holiday, with a traditional lantern contest, children’s traditional dress contest, a teen pageant, Ph? eating contest ($20 entry, beginning at 11:30 a.m. and with a $200 cash prize), interactive cultural games, and other various tournaments and contests. Tickets are $7 presale and $10 at the door. 

The Morning After, A Houston Press Brunch Event at Silver Street Studios

Our fourth annual The Morning After, A Houston Press Brunch Event is going down at Silver Street Studios, 2000 Edwards, from 11:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. Expect eats from over 25 local eateries, brunch cocktail samples and music. Confirmed restaurants include BCK, Boheme, Duck Donuts, Kuu, Snooze and The Rustic, to name a few. General admission tickets ($40 in advance) include unlimited brunch and drink samples, plus three drink tickets with additional drink tickets available for purchase at the event. The VIP admission ticket ($65 in advance) includes entry into the event at 11 a.m., unlimited brunch and drink samples, and six drink tickets with additional drink tickets available for purchase at the event.

TableOne at Royal Sonesta Houston

Royal Sonesta Houston, 2222 West Loop South, continues TableOne, its chef’s table dining experience spotlighting stops on the global culinary path that brought executive chef Robert Graham to Houston. This month, Graham will focus on a “New York state of mind.” Diners can get an intimate and interactive look at the heart of ARA Restaurant’s bustling kitchen, with seven courses and five wine pairings. Tickets are $150.

Seasonal Tequila and Wine Dinners at Alicia’s Mexican Grille

Alicia’s Mexican Grille is closing out its seasonal tequila and wine dinners for the fall season, with this week’s dinner held at the Sugar Land location, 20420 Southwest Freeway. Guests can enjoy a three-course dinner and welcome drink with limited-edition Maestro Dobel tequila cocktails and off-menu dishes, including a Napa Valley red blend paired with pepper Cognac Angus beef filet and crab enchilada; and flan de cajeta paired with a Maestro Dobel Añejo Old Fashioned. Tickets are $59++ per person. 

Sunday, September 29

Brunch Launch at Ouzo Bay

Ouzo Bay, 4444 Westheimer, will celebrate the launch of new brunch specials with half-off select bottles of rosé and $49 bottles of Veuve Clicquot. Brunch runs from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. and guests can enjoy dishes including savory Greek Frittata, Maine Lobster Omelette and Eggs Shakshouka as DJ Bizz spins tunes throughout the day. The kick-off will benefit the KNOWAutism Foundation.
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Brooke Viggiano is a contributing writer who is always looking to share Houston's coolest and tastiest happenings with the Houston Press readers.
Contact: Brooke Viggiano