Food / Drink, Houston
Beer lovers, wake up! There is one microbrewery in Houston, making very nice beer (a lager, a wheatbeer, a brown, an amber, and seasonal beers) which can be bought in every store of Houston. There is a tour of the brewery every Saturday at 1 pm and it includes free beer!
Here is what you do if you are an aficionado of St Arnold beer.
Show up shortly before 1 pm on Saturday, without forgetting the glasses you bought during your last visit, and all the St Arnold 6-pack carriers of the beer you drank since then.
Enter the brewery at 1 pm and grab as many tockens as you can (these are for the free beer, you'll probably get 4 per person).
Listen to the talk of the brew master (he is really funny and interesting).
Head for the bar and drink. If you have your own glass you will get more beer, and your carrriers can be exchanged for St Arnold souvenirs (10 for a pint glass, 20 for a pilsner glass, aso...).
If you are lucky, there will not be a very bad local rock band playing much too loudly.
St Arnold brewery is located Northwest of Houston, just outside 610 loop in a warehouse in an industrial park.
From West 610 Loop:
Exit 290 at Antoine/34th Street. Make a U-turn under the freeway and take the feeder road southeast for 1/4 mile. Then turn right on Mitchelldale. Take the second left onto Fairway Park Drive. The Brewery is 150 yards down Fairway Park Drive on the left.
I went here with some friends and picked blueberries (when they were in season). I never liked blueberries, I was just going along for fun. But after tasting these blueberries, I loved them! I think during different seasons they have different fruit that you can pick.(strawberries, blueberries, blackberries, and figs). After you're finished picking, you can go weigh and buy however much you want.
11282 County Road 302. Plantersville, TX 77363. Located near Plantersville, Texas on FM 1774. A 50 minute drive from downtown Houston.
One of the two wineries near Houston (the other one in Baytown) constitutes a perfect afternoon outing. Take the $5 tour to learn how they make their wine, see the big vats and barrels, the cellar (yes, a cellar in Houston! Quite rare because the water table is high), look at the vineyards, and taste 4 of their wines. They grow only one type of grapes in the harsh hot and humid Houston weather, the Blanc du Bois, which make a nice light refreshing white wine. They buy all their other grapes, but exclusively from Texas. The lady who gave us the tour, and the one who served our wine for tasting were both really nice and helpful. They have a souvenir shop of course.
Haak vineyards also offer diners, on Sunday night with music bands, and can be booked for weddings and special events.
Monday thru Friday 11 am - 6 pm
Saturday 11 am - 7 pm
Sunday 12 pm - 5 pm
Houston has some really great restaurants. BUT, you know where the BEST place to eat in Houston is? It is at my daughter's house. She is an excellent cook. Here you see Barbara eating a tomato bisque and a great salad. We had had this soup in a restaurant and Kristen came home and duplicated it from scratch. I believe it tasted better...
Downtown Houston is becoming more revitalized. One of my favorite restaurants is Mia Bellas for Sunday morning champagne brunch. This is a very elegant brunch with items you would not normally expect to be found on a brunch menu, with a focus on Italian. Very good. If you are in Houston, you don't want to miss it.
Here are my bevy of beauties I had champagne brunch with. My daughter, Kristen, my wife, Barbara, and Virginia our friend who is a Houston native and knows it like the back of her hand. She makes a great tour guide.
If you need to pick up some ingredients for your next Asian meal, take a field-trip like excursion to the monstrous Hong Kong suermarket on Bellaire on a Saturday afternoon. Tons of Asians shop there because they have the largest selection of fresh seafood (including snails, clams, live fish and lobster, and crabs) and fresh vegetables. You'll see fruits and vegetables that you didn't even know existed! On the weekends, they make lots of pastries and quick appetizer-like foods that you can buy. They've got lucky bamboo plants (make good gifts) and other plants you can't find anywhere else. You can even pick up a cheap wok or chopsticks. It's located in a large shopping plaza, so there are restaurants and other shops to explore, too. Be aware that it's so packed on the weekends that it's really hard to find parking... keep driving around. Hey, it's not DisneyWorld, but it's a free indoor activity that kids and adults will all enjoy!
This is a great neighborhood, joint where you can get home mexican food 24-hours a day. That means after you leave the downtown bars at 2am, take your last $7 to the Spanish Flower in the Heights. You won't be dissapointed!
And, this is my plate. Does this look yummy or what? Now, should you be wanting to eat at my daughter's house, I would suggest you call first, just to make sure she is there :-))