If there is one thing that is notable about Houston, it's the food!! I am so fortunate to live in such a diverse city that features food from all around the globe. Once COVID goes away or with the necessary safety measures in place, you should definitely pay Houston a visit to try all the amazing food it offers. The choices are endless when it comes to Houston restaurnts, but I narrowed it down to some of my personal favorites/interesting dining experiences that I am sure you will LOVE! For us locals, let's continue to show our support for small business at this time.
Nice to Meet You (Chinatown, Houston)
If you have never tried hot pot before, you are missing out! It is such a fun, interactive dining experience to enjoy with friends and family, especially during colder days. Hot pot is basically a pot filled with a delicious soup base that you leave boiling as you cook various ingredients in it, such as shrimp, lamb/beef slices, dumplings, fish balls, tofu, noodles, and all kinds of veggies - the possibilities are truly endless!
What makes Nice to Meet You unique is that you can split the hot pot soup base to a spicy and a non-spicy side for everyone to enjoy! There is also a fridge section at the back of the restaurant that has a myriad of hot pot ingredients for you to select. Prices of the selections range from $0.35 to $15, so pick whatever is within your spend budget. There is also a sauce section where you can DIY your own dipping sauce for your hot pot ingredients. I loved my dining experience here!
Yokushi Robata (Richmond Avenue, Houston)
Yokushi Robata is a Japanese tapas-style restaurant that I love going to again and again! I have been to Japan several times and have tried so many yummy Japanese dishes, and Yokushi Robata really hits the spot whenever I am craving Japanese cuisine. It is hard to choose which items to order with their extensive menu, but I recommend the Okonomiyaki (a savory Japanese pancake with cabbage, pork, and fish flakes), the Chashu Pork Pun (super soft and tender pork in a steamed bun), the Ahi Tuna Poke (if you are in the mood for something lighter and refreshing!), the Beef Udon, and the Yokushi Don (marinated pork belly with rice). Literally typing these items out is making me hungry!
Notable things I'd like to additionally point out is that the tuna I had in the Ahi Tuna Poke was extremely fresh, and the poke was on the sweeter side with generous chunks of mango that went perfectly with the tuna. The beef udon is also a winner in my books because of how comforting the udon noodles are. Udon is hard to perfect because the noodles can taste quite bland - not at Yokushi Robata. Check this restaurant out if you simply want a satisfying, no-gimmicks meal all at a reasonable price.
Mia Bella Trattoria (Richmond Avenue, Houston)
I recently went to brunch HEAVEN after trying out Mia Bella Trattoria in the Greenway Plaza area of Houston. "Mia Bella" is Italian for "My Beautiful". A "trattoria" is a small Italian restaurant, and my experience here definitely lived up to the name. I came in around 11am on a Saturday and was greeted by a kind and friendly host who seated us at a beautiful table next to the window. He then proceeded to recommend us the Mia Bella Mimosa and Bellini, which were both so refreshing!
My favorite item here was their brunch pizza called the Pizza Modo Mio, which I topped with prosciutto, eggs, spinach, and tomato. The eggs were left runny, which gave me the perfect bite into this pizza! The Truffle Wild Mushroom Polenta Benedict was also absolutely delicious - who doesn't like truffle??
What is awesome about this restaurant is that the owner is actually Moroccan, so many of the menu items have seasonings and spices that make the Italian dishes even more flavorful and interesting! Next time I come here, I definitely want to try their famous Parmesan Chicken and Squid Ink Pasta.
EggHaus Gourmet (Houston Heights)
EggHaus is one of the hottest breakfast sensations here in Houston! This place is truly every girl's dream. Let me first start off with the drinks - they make some absolutely BEAUTIFUL drinks that are pink and purple in color, ranging from the butterfly, blueberry, mango, and peach flavors. Caffeine lovers can also rejoice with their matcha and flavored lattes.
The food at EggHaus is also amazing! They have an assortment of croissant flavors that are also very beautiful! My favorites are the rose and lavender croissants. The breakfast sandwiches are also perfecttt!! They are made with perfectly scrambled eggs nested within a brioche bun. You can choose to add sausage, bacon, or even steak in them! All in all, this place is a must-go for a relaxing weekend off!
Trendy Dumpling (Greenway Houston)
If you love spicy, this is your place! Trendy Dumpling is a restraunt that I always drove but never tried until recently, but wow this place was worth the wait! They specialize in Szechuan dishes, so their spices are on another level! My favorite dishes from this place are their soup dumplings, homemade bang bang pulled noodles (you can actually watch the chef demonstrate this!) served with a flavorful beef broth, and their pecking duck entree. Everything here is absolutely delicious - I don't think you could go wrong with any of the choices here!
Common Bond Bakery and Cafe (various locations across Houston)
Common Bond is hands down the best bakery I have been too - literally everything here is top notch but my favorites from here are their triple chocolate cookies, pistachio croissant, and their strawberry chocolate passion entremet. If you ever want to surprise a loved one with great coffee and a yummy box of goodies, this is your place! PSA - their bakery items are half off after 8PM every night!
Common Bond is also a great place for brunch/lunch as they also have a bistro menu that includes mushroom truffle flatbread, shrimp and grits, beet salad, burgers and sandwiches, etc!
Hope you enjoy my restaurant recommendations! Let me know if I should feature any other restaurant, and feel free to follow me at @recipewithrach on Instagram for my food adventures.