Owner Narin Sehgal and chef-in-chief Gary Grewal channel the culinary traditions of their Punjabi hometowns to craft delicately spiced dishes for a menu that was rated "excellent" by Zagat. Chicken tikka and tandoori prawns soak up a savory marinade before warming up in the same clay oven that gives a flame-kissed crust to breads stuffed with paneer, nuts, lamb, or mint. The black-lentil base of dal makhani spends an entire night slowly absorbing the essence of distinctive herbs, much like a college student cramming for a big botany exam. Abundant subcontinental flair outfits the dining rooms, including arched doorways set into clay-colored walls, rich prints, and tasseled chandeliers.
Black Walnut Cafe exemplifies the word eclectic. At five locations sprinkled around the Houston area, the contemporary American restaurant offers diners more than 100 freshly prepared, cooked-to-order dishes. The menu covers every meal of the day, starting with philly-cheesesteak omelets and brioche french toast for breakfast. Later in the day, visitors can choose from a range of dishes that include asian barbecue salmon, lobster tacos, and Black Walnut's signature pot roast—complete with brown gravy, house potatoes, and roasted veggies. The café satisfies sweet teeth as well, with housemade gelato and a rotating selection of baked goods.
Inside each 59 Diner location, friendly chatter ripples from booth to booth and white-capped servers scurry around dishing out retro classics. Recognized by the Houston Press as among the city's best in 2009, 59 Diner's made-from-scratch milk shakes and malts slide across tables in old-fashioned glasses before coating tongues in such flavors as mocha, fudge, and Oreo. Sweet sips offset savory burgers, patty melts, and all-day breakfast specials, which can also be ordered in pint-size portions for younger patrons. Meals transport tongues to the past, and jukeboxes release vintage tunes into the air, inspiring guests to try to catch their favorite notes inside empty glasses.
After aimlessly wandering down grocery store aisles, chopping ingredients, eating a bunch of warm-up cookies, and assembling the meal, you'll have lost your appetite. Today’s Groupon gives you a healthy, fuss-free option with $40 worth of Tru Meals from Diet Gourmet Houston for $20.Follow @Groupon_Says on Twitter.
Thousands of miles separate Houston from France’s capital city, but close your eyes at Au Petit Paris and it’s easy to imagine that you’re seated at a tiny café in Montparnasse. Breathe in deep, and you’ll find that the sharp scent of french onion soup is sweetly punctuated by the aroma of fresh baked bread or a savory pot of veal osso bucco slowly simmering somewhere close by. There’s a good reason why this charming French bistro feel so much like the real thing. In fact, there are two: chefs Eric and Dominique, both of whom cut their teeth in some of France’s top Michelin-rated restaurants. When the duo arrived in Houston, they brought the genuine Parisian experience with them—complete with neoclassical architectural details, autographed portraits of French entertainers, and a tiny guillotine for chopping vegetables. And, of course, they also brought a menu of traditional French cuisine that includes everything from a classic crepe suzette with Grand Marnier sauce to a slowly braised coq au vin served with sautéed spinach and fingerling potato puree.
No matter what the hour, the lights are always on and the pies are always fresh at House of Pies. Staff serve up classic diner fare 24 hours a day, and breakfast is served at all hours so clients can dig into an acapulco breakfast––scrambled eggs with taco meat, cheese, veggies, and hot flour tortillas––or a stack of belgian waffles whenever a craving hits. Though the servings are generous, seasoned patrons know to always leave room for a slice of Bayou Goo pie, which layers sweet cream cheese, vanilla custard, chunks of chocolate, and whipped cream into a pecan crust. The rich creation is just one of more than 30 other pie options, ranging from classic apple and Washington cherry to southern-style buttermilk or french silk. Of course, if a customer is looking for a slimmer dessert, they can always opt for one of the bakers’ sugar-free creations or gaze at a full-calorie slice through the wrong end of a pair of binoculars.