It’s that time of year again, when gluttony gives back. Houston Restaurant Weeks (HRW), the single largest fundraiser for the Houston Food Bank, will take place Aug. 1 through Sept. 2. This month-long event ensures that eating out helps to feed Houstonians in need of meals. Since its inception in 2003, HRW has raised more than $12.2 million dollars to fight hunger and has provided 36.6 million meals. Each meal purchased from an HRW menu can provide up to 21 meals for the Houston Food Bank. This year, more than 250 of Houston’s top restaurants are participating. Ready to eat out for a great cause? Here are some tables to book for HRW 2019.
If it’s a beautiful day, Backstreet Café is the perfect spot to enjoy a leisurely three-course brunch on the serene patio. The $20 brunch includes an amuse bouche of either a summer parfait or iceberg wedge salad. Entrées abound like the smoked chicken hash with avocado-tomatillo sauce, grilled shrimp salad, garden nachos and house-cured salmon to name a few. Top it off with either a profiterole, milk chocolate crème brûlée or seasonal sorbet.
One of the latest restaurants from Agricole Hospitality is Indianola. If you haven’t been able to snag a table, HRW is the perfect time to try. Enjoy two courses like a Texas peach salad paired with their Moroccan eggs or 12 oz. slow cooked pork ribs and a crispy chicken biscuit. There are also the charred carrots, which are a perfect vegan option and an elevated eggs benedict.
For a casual brunch or outdoor seating, head to The Barking Pig in The Heights. Two courses are offered for $20. The first course includes the bloody Mary salad topped with bacon and house-picked vegetables, a parfait cup, polenta fries and a mimosa flight. The second course has the deep-dish quiche, avocado toast and brioche French toast.
Houstonians on the west side of the city are loving the new Italian eatery B.B. Italia. The restaurant’s lunch menu is full of options for the perfect mid-day treat. For the first course, you can keep it light with one of their many salads like the baby kale salad or the roasted beet salad, or simply indulge in the meatballs, beef carpaccio and caprese salad choices. An assortment of true Italian-style pizza is available for the second course, along with the meatball parmigiana sandwich, three cheese ravioli, chicken parmigiana or veal scallopini. Buon appetito!
Chances are you’ll need a Mexican fix during HRW. Head to Goode Company Kitchen & Cantina for two delicious courses boasting Mexican favorites. Enjoy made-to-order guacamole or campechana, which is a Mexican-style seafood cocktail with avocado, fire-roasted chilies and pico de gallo. Second-course offerings include grilled romaine salad with chicken, crispy beef picadillo tacos or your choice of two beef, chicken or cheese enchiladas.
With interior décor that’s to die for, even the most sophisticated guests will enjoy Emmaline’s three-course lunch menu. The first course includes scallop crudo, bruléed East coast oysters with black garlic, miso eggplant and baby red Caesar salad. The second course has salmon gravlax salad, 5 oz. branzino filleto and lamb pappardelle. Buttermilk panna cotta and daily sorbetto round out the third course desserts.
Hotspot Night Heron is offering a $35 per person menu during HRW. First course options include crisp chilled cucumbers, arugula salad or heirloom tomatoes with sheep’s milk cheese. Spaghetti cacao e pepe, penne rigate with pesto, garbanzo beans and pea tendril, and finally the chicken saltimbocca will all leave you full and happy. However, be sure to save some room for the summer peach crostata, salted caramel panna cotta or the chocolate pistachio cannoli.
At $45 per dinner, Ginger & Fork offers four courses of delicious Cantonese-inspired dishes and a glass of the house red or white wine. Do not miss the steamed dumplings offered in the first course, along with fried cauliflower or wood ear mushrooms. The second course is a soup course with herb and pork bone broth soup, Hong Kong wonton soup or the tofu and vegetable soup. The third course includes your protein options like delicious Cantonese curry chicken, exotic mushrooms and beef or the Buddha’s delight, which is a variety of non-meat ingredients. Desserts include the ginger parfait, taro sago pudding or raspberry sorbet.
The all-American menu at BCK will have patrons reliving their childhood indulgences. For $35 guests can enjoy three fun courses. Appetizers include homemade crab cakes, Swedish meatballs and the signature spicy Dr. Pepper chicken wings. The second course has a cornmeal-crusted Gulf snapper, rodeo burger that is two beef patties with short ribs, shrimp and crawfish potpie or the maple-glazed pork shank. Desserts are a must and include the peanut butter brownie sundae, strawberry cheesecake or the chocolate Belgian waffle with banana and Nutella.
If exciting surf, turf and air options spark your interest, head to Lucienne for their $45 dinner menu. The first of three courses includes a tuna crudo, glazed pork belly or crudité with a roasted fire pepper coulis. The second course includes halibut with a butternut squash purée, pheasant with caramelized endives and a polenta cake or the 10 oz. Dean and Peeler ranch ribeye with wild mushrooms ragout. Lastly, the dessert menu offers refreshing fruit options with the thin apple tart, strawberries melba and chocolate mousse with cherry compote.