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treece300e


Joined: 29 Jul 2011
Posts: 413
Location: Nampa, ID
PostPosted: Mon Sep 30, 2013 2:36 am    Post subject: Visiting Houston Reply with quote

I will be visiting Houston for a few days to watch the Texans play the Rams. While I'm there I will be staing at the Courtyard By Marriott Houston Medical Center, about a mile away from Reliant Stadium. I'll only be there two nights and I'm looking for any suggestions on restaurants and transportation. I'm from Idaho, and I am made to understand that BBQ here isn't on the same level as BBQ in the south, so I figure I'll ask some of the natives. I'm not stuck on BBQ, but something that is more "native" would be nice since I can get Jimmy John's or Burger King here.

A few things to note: I will be there Saturday and Sunday nights. I will not have a rental car so walking distance (1-3 miles) would be preferred, but I will spring for a cab if the restaurant is worthwhile.

Lastly, for getting between the hotel and the airport, George Bush International, I am planning on taking a cab. Is that the best way to go or is there a shuttle or rail system that may be better?

Thanks for any advice you can give.
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amazingandre


Joined: 16 Dec 2007
Posts: 13957
Location: Elkhorn, WI
PostPosted: Mon Sep 30, 2013 6:17 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

My wife and I were there last year and I will say its amazing. BUT around Reliant is just meh. Unless you go to the game, you should stay somewhere else lol. There isn't anything crazy good like restaurants or things to do down there.

As for BBQ, its a MAJOR disappointment in Houston, at least the places I went. Kansas City is where you need to go for some major BBQ satisfaction.....
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Wolf6151


Joined: 11 Feb 2008
Posts: 2798
Location: Pearland, Texas
PostPosted: Mon Sep 30, 2013 9:03 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

As for transportation to and from the airport, check with your hotel they might run a shuttle but their is no rail or public transport to and from the airport. Houston is a town that you want to rent a car in because it's so big and places of interest and restaurants are so far apart.

BBQ is different here because it's BBQ beef brisket, although we also have everything else, whereas in the rest of the country BBQ is pork. BBQ here can vary quite a bit from restaurant to restaurant as well. I don't know the area your staying in well, not sure if there's anything within walking distance, but you have to remember Houston is huge, it can take over an hour to get from one side to the other on the highways, and it's spread out so good places to eat can be many miles away. We've also got great Tex-Mex food and great seafood so don't limit yourself to just BBQ. There are some great steak houses in the Houston area as well.


Last edited by Wolf6151 on Mon Sep 30, 2013 2:27 pm; edited 2 times in total
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Texans02


Joined: 11 Mar 2005
Posts: 1763
Location: HOU+ATX
PostPosted: Mon Sep 30, 2013 12:50 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I'll defer to someone else on public/airport transportation. It's not my expertise.

As for food, Houston is one of the best dining cities in the country. However, for Texas BBQ most of the best known places are in the hill country (around Austin & San Antonio). Killan's in Pearland has been making a name for itself, and I've heard a number of people vouch for Gatlin's, though I haven't been there. But I'm drawing a blank on any landmark BBQ places in Houston.

Texas in general has a fast growing brewing scene, including a number of good craft brews in Houston itself. There are some great pub restaurants that have nice food and a bunch of local and national taps.

I'm sure we could help you find good places to eat and hang out. What else do you like besides BBQ?
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ServantofYHWH


Joined: 25 Jan 2010
Posts: 13659
Location: Clutch City
PostPosted: Mon Sep 30, 2013 12:56 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Texans02 wrote:
I'll defer to someone else on public/airport transportation. It's not my expertise.

As for food, Houston is one of the best dining cities in the country. However, for Texas BBQ most of the best known places are in the hill country (around Austin & San Antonio). Killan's in Pearland has been making a name for itself, and I've heard a number of people vouch for Gatlin's, though I haven't been there. But I'm drawing a blank on any landmark BBQ places in Houston.

Texas in general has a fast growing brewing scene, including a number of good craft brews in Houston itself. There are some great pub restaurants that have nice food and a bunch of local and national taps.

I'm sure we could help you find good places to eat and hang out. What else do you like besides BBQ?


When you brought up craft I immediately thought of Petrel Station and it reminded me of their Rancor Drool
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texandominance


Joined: 22 Sep 2007
Posts: 4631
Location: Duluth, Mn
PostPosted: Mon Sep 30, 2013 7:49 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I haven't been to Houston in years, but I could really go for some Whataburger. I'd try that for a quick meal sometime. From what I remember, it was fantastic fast food
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treece300e


Joined: 29 Jul 2011
Posts: 413
Location: Nampa, ID
PostPosted: Mon Sep 30, 2013 7:58 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Texans02 wrote:
I'll defer to someone else on public/airport transportation. It's not my expertise.

As for food, Houston is one of the best dining cities in the country. However, for Texas BBQ most of the best known places are in the hill country (around Austin & San Antonio). Killan's in Pearland has been making a name for itself, and I've heard a number of people vouch for Gatlin's, though I haven't been there. But I'm drawing a blank on any landmark BBQ places in Houston.

Texas in general has a fast growing brewing scene, including a number of good craft brews in Houston itself. There are some great pub restaurants that have nice food and a bunch of local and national taps.

I'm sure we could help you find good places to eat and hang out. What else do you like besides BBQ?


I like seafood, including sushi, Italian, and the more traditional American food like burgers, mac & cheese, meatloaf, etc. I'm pretty open-minded, but I'm not as interested in Thai or Vietnamese food.
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lumberjackchris


Joined: 14 Apr 2011
Posts: 4587
PostPosted: Tue Oct 01, 2013 12:31 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

texandominance wrote:
I haven't been to Houston in years, but I could really go for some Whataburger. I'd try that for a quick meal sometime. From what I remember, it was fantastic fast food


That ketchup doe!
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Texans02


Joined: 11 Mar 2005
Posts: 1763
Location: HOU+ATX
PostPosted: Thu Oct 10, 2013 12:12 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Your trip is getting close, hopefully this game will go better than our recent ones have.

The two major areas with bars/restaurants/etc closest to your hotel are Rice Village/Upper Kirby and Midtown. Neither are really walking distance, but should be a short cab ride or bus trip (disclaimer: I am unfamiliar with the bus system, it may not be worth your time).

Are you looking at fancier restaurants or more casual? Also, are you looking to go to a bar+food kind of place or a more dedicated restaurant? I think we can get you fixed up with suggestions.

EDIT: you may want to Google restaurants in those areas and get feedback from us on ones that interest you. Or we can just make suggestions.
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Apollo Stallion wrote:
Couldn't we have Gallery Furniture "Saves You Money" day vs. Buffalo where everyone is given a stack of cash to throw as Mario exists the tunnel?


Yes please!
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Texans02


Joined: 11 Mar 2005
Posts: 1763
Location: HOU+ATX
PostPosted: Thu Oct 10, 2013 12:40 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Also, I'll get you started with a plug for one of my favorite places in town: the Hay Merchant.

It's a modern pub that shares a kitchen with Underbelly, which is one of the top rated restaurants in town. They have 50+ taps, all craft beer, with a number of local selections included.
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Apollo Stallion wrote:
Couldn't we have Gallery Furniture "Saves You Money" day vs. Buffalo where everyone is given a stack of cash to throw as Mario exists the tunnel?


Yes please!
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treece300e


Joined: 29 Jul 2011
Posts: 413
Location: Nampa, ID
PostPosted: Fri Oct 11, 2013 1:23 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thank you for the information, 02, and everyone else as well. Here's a few different places that I'm looking at:

Mama's Oven
Buon Appetito
Pappadeaux Seafood

Of those three, I'm leaning a little bit toward Pappadeaux. However, I did just notice that the Rice campus is pretty close. I decided that renting a car was probably the same price as taking a taxi, so I opted to do that instead. That increases my range.
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Wolf6151


Joined: 11 Feb 2008
Posts: 2798
Location: Pearland, Texas
PostPosted: Fri Oct 11, 2013 1:38 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Pappadeaux's has good food. I'm not familiar with the other 2 you mentioned. Fogo de Chao, a restaurant on Westheimer has good food, you'll eat til you hurt. Good luck to you and be careful, Houston isn't small town Idaho.
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Texans02


Joined: 11 Mar 2005
Posts: 1763
Location: HOU+ATX
PostPosted: Sat Oct 12, 2013 7:49 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

treece300e wrote:
Of those three, I'm leaning a little bit toward Pappadeaux. However, I did just notice that the Rice campus is pretty close. I decided that renting a car was probably the same price as taking a taxi, so I opted to do that instead. That increases my range.


Pappadeux's is part of the Pappa's restaurant group. They are a local group and run a tight ship, with good offerings at their restaurants. Food hipsters look past them since they aren't the new hotness, but they are good and have been for a long time. That particular restaurant does Cajun food. Pappasito's does Tex-Mex, and it is good as well.

I haven't been to the other two, so my apologies for the lack of feedback. Hope your trip goes well. You trying to round up a group of posters for drinks or anything?
_________________
Apollo Stallion wrote:
Couldn't we have Gallery Furniture "Saves You Money" day vs. Buffalo where everyone is given a stack of cash to throw as Mario exists the tunnel?


Yes please!
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texandominance


Joined: 22 Sep 2007
Posts: 4631
Location: Duluth, Mn
PostPosted: Sun Oct 13, 2013 2:24 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Wolf6151 wrote:
Pappadeaux's has good food. I'm not familiar with the other 2 you mentioned. Fogo de Chao, a restaurant on Westheimer has good food, you'll eat til you hurt. Good luck to you and be careful, Houston isn't small town Idaho.


Fogo de Chao is really, really, really good but not just a Houston restaurant, so if it were me, I wouldn't go there since you're visiting. Find a local place that is a Houston only joint
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treece300e


Joined: 29 Jul 2011
Posts: 413
Location: Nampa, ID
PostPosted: Tue Oct 15, 2013 3:47 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks everyone for the suggestions. When I stepped outside from the airport (George Bush International), I felt like I has stepped into a room that contained an indoor swimming pool. I am not a well-traveled individual, so the humidity was the first thing I noticed.

My impressions of the city as a whole were very positive. People seemed to be polite, though my interactions were relatively limited. Coming from Idaho, the politeness didn't strike me as "over the top", but I am to understand that Idaho, more specifically Boise, is very polite and friendly as well. Driving, however, was not as enjoyable. The roads weren't great, and and some people drove very aggressively. However, I think that's going to happen anywhere, so I won't let a few individuals taint my opinions.

Reliant Stadium was incredible. I didn't even consider tailgating because I was far too enthralled with watching the players warm up. It was surreal to see JJ, Andre, Arian, Brown, Cushing, et all in person. It was great to see Watt playing catch with a kid in the crowd for a short period of time. It was only a minute or so out of his routine, and that kid now has a story for the rest of his life. I'm likely more starstuck than most because we don't really have famous people here, but I liked the pregame warm-ups and introductions as much, or more than the game. Though, this game in particular probably weighed heavily into that. The crowd's reaction to Watt's introduction blew me away. I cannot imagine a more well-liked athlete in any city.

Overall, it was a great experience. I would love to make it a yearly event, but I'd prefer to stay longer than the two nights I was there so I can go explore the city more.
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