Restaurant News

This Week in Houston Food Events: Go Texan Week & Cochon555

All Week Long


It's rodeo season, y'all! Put on your finest western wear and check out the GO TEXAN specials and celebrations around town. Phoenicia Specialty Foods, 1001 Austin, will be offering unusual Texan foods, and MKT BAR inside of Phoenicia will have a special Texan menu and a lineup of country performers all week long.

Monday, February 22

National Margarita Day

There's no better cure for the Monday blues than a cold, colorful, tequila-laden concoction. To celebrate, check out Añejo, 1180-1 Uptown Park, where you'll find 12 different margaritas and happy hour prices from open until 6 p.m. El Tiempo Cantina will also be offering happy hour prices at each location all day long.

Spanish-Style Slow-Cooked Class

Chef Daniel Olivella of B44 in San Francisco and Barlata in Austin will lead this cooking class at Central Market, 3815 Westheimer, on the art of slow-cooking in Spanish style. The dishes you'll make include beer-braised pork belly, braised duck legs with pine nuts and prunes, and oxtail braised in red wine with garlic mashed potatoes. Tickets are $75 per person, and you can get yours, as well as look at the full menu, on the Central Market website.

Tuesday, February 23

La Madeleine Turns 33

Visit any Houston-area location of La Madeleine and wish the employees a happy birthday (or joyeux anniversaire, if you'd like to use the French version) in honor of the company's 33rd birthday, and you'll get a free mini vanilla tart with fresh fruit and homemade whipped cream. There's no purchase necessary, and the offer is good all day long.

Duemani Wine Tasting

Head to Sonoma Wine Bar, 2720 Richmond, for a tasting featuring Duemani wines from Italian winemaker Luca d'Attoma. The tasting begins at 6 p.m., and your $10 tasting fee will be waived if you purchase two bottles.

Saint Arnold Beer Dinner

Grab a cold one — or rather six of them — at this five-course meal at 6:30 p.m. at Paul's Kitchen, 2502 Algerian. Chef Paul Lewis created the menu for the occasion, which includes Weedwacker-braised quail, roasted pork belly with blood orange barbecue sauce, and 44 Farms beef bistro fillet rubbed with ancho chiles and beer mash. The beer pairings, all from Saint Arnold, are Santo, Bishop's Barrel No. 12, Art Car IPA, 20th Anniversary Ale, Divine Reserve No. 15 and Icon Blue, a coffee porter. Cost is $65 per person; call 713-360-2002 for reservations.

Vincent Giradin Wine Dinner

At 7:30 p.m., Etoile, 1101-11 Uptown Park, will hold an educational wine dinner featuring five Vincent Girardin wines from the Meursault Vineyard. The five accompanying food courses include marinated bay scallops with blood orange sorbet, braised veal, and roasted duck breast with celery root mousseline. The dinner is $105 per person, and reservations can be made by calling 832-668-5808,

Wednesday, February 24

Rodeo Roundup Tequila Dinner

Exclusive club The Marque, 798 Sorella in CityCentre, is opening its doors to the public for a tequila dinner in honor of the beginning of rodeo season. The four-course meal will be prepared by chef Eric Aldis, and five tequilas from AsomBroso will be center stage. Representatives from Lucchese Boots and Hublot Watches will also be present to help attendees get their rodeo swagger just right. Dinner begins at 7 p.m. and costs $90 for non-members. Email The Marque to set up your reservation.

Thursday, February 25

Happy Hour Thursday at MFAH

From now through May 26, the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston, at 1001 Bissonnet, is putting on an extra-special happy hour celebration in honor of the Sculpted in Steel exhibition, which features sleek vintage cars and motorcycles from the early 20th century. Happy Hour Thursdays are from 6 to 8 p.m. outside of the museum and include cocktails inspired by the exhibition, music curated by a local DJ, a food truck and a special vintage automobile. Admission is free.

Italian Trattoria Cooking Class

Learn how to make casual, family-style Italian dishes at 6:30 p.m. at Central Market, 3815 Westheimer, with this cooking class. You'll create deep-fried anchovies with marinated artichokes, ricotta and fennel meatballs, veal saltimbocca with sautéed kale, and chocolate hazelnut pastries. Reservations are $65 per person and can be made through the Central Market website.

Lewis Wine Dinner

Join Doug Lewis of Lewis Wines for a five-course wine dinner at 6:30 p.m. at Rainbow Lodge, 2011 Ella, which includes five wine pairings from Lewis's Texan winery. The menu includes seared tuna with braised okra, duck and dumplings, coffee-crusted venison and cheddar-cocoa panna cotta. Reservations are $95 per person and can be made by emailing Rainbow Lodge.

Thursday through Saturday

World's Championship Bar-B-Cue Contest

The 43rd annual championship barbecue contest, part of the Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo, is Thursday through Saturday of this week at NRG Park. Attendees will get a chopped beef sandwich plate as part of admission, and there will be live music, including Kevin Fowler and Pat Green. The presentation of awards is at 6 p.m. on Saturday. Times are 5 to 11 p.m. Thursday, noon to 11 p.m. Friday and 9 a.m. to 11 p.m. Saturday. Tickets are $15 for adults and $5 for kids, and you can buy them on the HLSR website.

Friday, February 26

Saturday, February 27

Yellow Rose Whiskey Dinner

Head over to The Tasting Room at 818 Town and Country in CityCentre for a four-course meal with pairings from Yellow Rose Whiskey. The pre-dinner reception begins at 6 p.m., and the dinner, which begins at 7 p.m., includes duck leg lollipops over polenta, bacon-wrapped scallops and braised pork with pancakes. Cost is $97 per person, and you can buy tickets on Eventbrite.

Sunday, February 28

Kosher Chili Cookoff

From noon to 4 p.m., you'll find cooking teams competing to create the best kosher chili of all time at the Evelyn Rubenstein Jewish Community Center, 5601 South Braeswood. You're invited to come sample excellent chili, listen to live music and play games with your wee ones, and the $10 admission fee (or $6 for children) will benefit the ERJCC Meals on Wheels program and other charities. Get your tickets on the Kosher Chili Cookoff website.

Oscars Red Carpet Wine Dinner

This deluxe Oscars watch party at MAX's Wine Dive, 214 Fairview, doubles as a four-course wine dinner, which kicks off with a reception at 4 p.m. Attendees are encouraged to wear their red-carpet best, and they'll have an awards show of their very own; the dish that earns the People's Choice Award for the evening will become part of MAX's spring menu. Get your tickets for $65 each on Eventbrite.


This top-notch cooking competition pits five local chefs against one another for the title of Prince of Porc (and a ticket to the national competition) as they create up to five dishes from one whole hog. This year's competitors are Jean-Philippe Gaston of Izakaya, Justin Yu of Oxheart, Richard Knight of Hunky Dory, William Wright of Helen Greek Food and Wine, and David Cordúa of Americas. Guests can feast on bites of the competition dishes, as well as cocktails and wines. Unique tasting experiences will also take place, such as a prosciutto di parma tasting, ramen bar, butter bar and a pop-up pie shop. Read all of the juicy details and buy your ticket on the Cochon555 website. Prices range from $125 to $200, depending on what kind of perks you want, and the event kicks off at 5 p.m. at the JW Marriott Hotel, 5150 Westheimer.
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Alexandra Doyle