Tuesday, May 27, 2008

Houston Was Grand

The weather was spotty, but we managed.

(As always, pictures are clickable, so please, don't make the pictures sad, they long to be clicked, so click early, click often.)

Dylan and I took off Friday evening and we arrived at Fred and Christine's about 8:30. We had fruit, cheese, excellent salami and beverages.

Saturday morning after sleeping quite late, we went to have an early lunch/late breakfast at Le Madeleine. It was packed. Not feeling up to an hour wait, we opted for Cafe Express. Always a good choice. I had the Signature Triple Deli Salad. Delicious.

We then went to Barnes and Noble where I purchased (for me) Disgrace and Midnight's Children, (For the boys summer reading) A Tale Of Two Cities and A Separate Peace. I also bought Dylan a study guide to go with the Dickens. I then did a bit of shopping at World Market. I picked up some wine and a few items for the kitchen.

Saturday evening was windy, oppressively humid and quite warm stiflingly hot. We hoped to eat a little seafood outside on the water and listen to the band at this place.

The weather had other ideas, so it was seafood inside, sans band.

The Top Water Grill, right before the rain.

Great food, shoddy service.

Our table had fish tacos (perfect), fried shrimp and scallops (light, panko covered, and moist), ribeye steak (slightly over-cooked). Flat draft beer.

Sunday morning brought us a little sunshine, and much less humidity. We went downtown to have brunch at Farrago. There was about a 45 minute wait to be seated, but a place at the bar and bottomless Mimosa's made the wait almost pleasant.

The crowd was for the most part a little younger and hipper than we were, but we weren't there to be seen, we were there for the food!

The food delivered.

With the exception of the potato cakes, which were far too crisp, the food was divine. I started with the petite bowl of Pasole. OK - petite is a relative term. Petite compared to a washtub maybe. I was served a well-sized bowl of the most perfect pasole I have ever eaten. The pork was lean, tender, and juicy. When cooking pork this tender, it often becomes stringy and dry. Not here, the pork was tender enough to just about melt in your mouth, and moist all the way through. It was spicy, but not distractingly so, it tasted of roasted chile, pork, and hominy, with a clean taste of lime and cilantro cutting through ever so slightly. It was perfect. So perfect, in fact, that my otherwise exceptional huevos rancheros on tomato polenta and black beans with roasted corn salsa was a mere afterthought, although a delicious after thought to be sure.

The tenderloin migas was wonderful and well cooked, and the spinach and feta souffle with a rosemary beurre blanc was outstanding. Tender, smooth, and decadently rich. I wish I had taken more pictures, but by this time the bottomless mimosas were taking their toll.

Farrago


Fred and Christine didn't mind the wait.


Dylan, not enjoying the wait as much as we were.


The bar was full of happy mimosa drinkers.


Perfect Pasole


There was a little sunshine downtown.


This little girl enjoyed the weather.


Can you name this (infamous) building?


This is from the downtown Aquarium. Too bad the food isn't as good as the view.



I love downtown.


We made our trip to Le Madeleine on Monday before hitting the Mall, where I did my part to boost the economy.

I bought some clothes, some photography lights, and a new lens. My next food pictures should be significantly better. We shall see.

15 comments:

seventh sister said...

If you are ever in Houston and get a chance to hear a band called Mo Hansum Blues, take it. They are best acoustic blues band I have ever heard.

Brave Sir Robin said...

I'll make a point to do so.

Do they have a regular gig?

Bitty said...

So, apparently they have no food or stores where you live. No wonder you're a fool for the city!!! ;)

Seriously, I never even heard of pasole before, but I see, having clicked and made it indeed a giant bowl, that it's full of ingredients that I love.

Just a Plane Ride Away said...

Oh my gosh, she says fanning herself, tenderloin migas? Bottomless mimosas? Fish tacos, fried shrimp, Cafe Express, La Madeleine... By the way, have you tried Andre's (River Oaks Blvd and Westheimer)? There's a little bit of Europe for you.

Your photos are gorgeous! I love the color and light in the restaurant and food shots. But I shouldn't have clicked on that pasole--now I'm hungry.

The skyline photos with the blue skies and puffy clouds made me so homesick. I can name ALL those buildings. Fantastic shot of the E**** walkway.

Thank you for a glimpse of home. Hope you post more Houston photos!

pidomon said...

ahh your pic make me homesick.

glad you enjoyed your trip

konagod said...

Enron?

konagod said...

By the way, I remember when Enron was running TV ads constantly, right before the big fiasco. I had no idea what they were "selling" or who they were targeting. It just seemed very random, almost egotising.

Nowadays, when I see TV ads for anything that I don't know what the fuck it is, I get suspicious.

If I were a stockholder, I'd be thinking "SELL!"

Brave Sir Robin said...

Bitty - you're not too far off from the truth! I did not buy a single thing this weekend that could have been purchased in my home town.

Seriously.
And yes, the Pasole was
wonderful

Ding Ding!! Enron it is!!

btw - Just A Plane Ride, excellent call on the walkway! I have several shots of that, but I liked that one best! I have always wanted to go to Andre's but i haven't made it.

Kona - I know exactly what you mean about the ads. I always wonder about those types of ads, I mean if you have to advertise to sell stock, that can't be good.

Anne said...

Aww, that almost makes me miss Houston. The pasole looks excellent! Sounds like a great weekend. :)

Matthew said...

Cool pics.

See also:
http://elizabitch-ez.blogspot.com/

Bee said...

Funny how the blue sky just looks so good (but then you can't feel the heat from the picture!).

It sounds like you packed lots of pleasure into your weekend. GOOD FOR YOU.

It's gotten lots of mentions, and here's one more: I want some of that pasole!

P.S. I like that picture of Dylan -- such a good expression of teen weariness!

seventh sister said...

I misspelled the name. It isi Moe rather than Mo. you can check out their schedule and their music here:
http://www.moehansum.com/

Alyson said...

I've never been to Texas, let alone Houston. I'd love to someday.

Your pictures are wonderful, even without your newly-purchased lens. Nice job. I'm jealous! Can't wait to get my own nice camera and then learn how to use it.

Brave Sir Robin said...

Alyson,

The "learning thing" is what I'm still doing.

:)

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