Sitting inside Bombay Pizza Company, owner Viral Patel watched the Food Network's The Best Thing I Ever Ate, waiting alongside family and friends for a mention of his Slumdog pizza, a fusion of Indian and Italian flavors. After the 30-second spot, the restaurant erupted into a standing ovation.
Patel's journey to that moment first began when he quit his job in restaurant management to travel around India learning how to cook. Hoping to one day open a restaurant of his own, Patel returned to the United States and became interested in pizza, buying his own pizza stone and experimenting with new recipes, which fused Indian flavors with the traditionally Italian pies. He opened Bombay Pizza Company with the help of his mother, Sonali, who also inspired the Sonu's Rita pizza, which combines house-made cilantro-mint chutney with a margarita pizza. Soon after the restaurant opened, it was awarded Houston Press's Best Pizza in 2010. In addition to pizza, the menu features Indian street fare such as the kati roll with tandoori chicken and paneer and traditional Italian dishes such as lasagna and chicken parmagiana.
Today, Bombay Pizza Company has two locations, the original in Houston and a second, larger location in Sugar Land. Both eateries feature saffron-hued walls, the soft glow of Thomas Edison–style filament light bulbs, and photos of Bombay residents performing daily activities including washing clothes, fishing, and playing chess. The Sugar Land location also features an outdoor patio, microbrews on tap, and a private dining area.
Walk into any of BreWingZ Sports Bar and Grill's 19 locations, and you'll be faced with many decisions. First, of course, is the food: the sports bar's crisp, juicy wings come in more than 25 different sauce flavors from classic suicidal hot to orange ginger. The mozzarella cheese sticks are carved from a cheese brick, breaded, and fried to order. And then there are the salads, sandwiches, burgers, and wraps. The family-friendly restaurant even gives kids an extensive selection with six child-friendly dishes, some of which include the same signature items their parents enjoy. But once you've ordered your food, there are a few more dilemmas: Which of the plentiful beers do you choose? Which game on the many massive HD televisions do you watch? Which one is the fork, again? Luckily, the spot's easygoing atmosphere and bounty of entertainment doesn't quite necessitate speedy decision making.
Cuisine Type: Wings/American
Reservations: Not offered
Handicap Accessible: Yes
Number of Tables: 50+
Parking: Parking lot
Most popular offering: Wings
Alcohol: Full bar
Delivery / Take-out: Metered street parking
The aroma of exotic spices and herbs swirls through Naseeb Indian Restaurant, reaching diners as waiters present North Indian cuisine at maroon-clothed tables. There, modern pendant lights illuminate platters of tandoori-baked chicken, lamb, and shrimp, plus traditional biryanis of long-grain Basmati rice and slow-cooked proteins. The cooks use Punjabi-style recipes to create six styles of tandoori naan, old-fashioned vegetable curry, and vegetarian dishes, which come with Indian cheese, creamy sauces, and the hearty type of vegetables backyard shrubs never seem to produce for some reason.
Though Diego Cantina's over-the-top decor welcomes diners inside, its authentic Mexican cuisine crafted from fresh ingredients urges them to stay. Alejandrina Garza and her three children opened Diego's Cantina in an attempt to bring their Mexican heritage to Sugar Land. Described in Living magazine as a "little piece of Tampico, Mexico [the Garza family] left behind," the restaurant impresses visitors with its oversized replicas of Mayan hieroglyphics and paintings. Bathed in soft lighting emanating from chandeliers and tabletop candles, diners eat traditional dishes fueled by family recipes while sipping on beverages served from a blue, glowing tequila bar.
The original Ragin Cajun joint opened in 1974, treating visitors to hearty po' boys, spicy red beans and rice, and authentic boiled crawfish. Today, visitors make the pilgrimage to one of four area locations, plopping down at tables clad in red-checker cloth to sup on meals of Gulf shrimp and crab, grilled rib eye, and homemade bread pudding. The intense flavors and ocean-fresh cuisine of southwestern Louisiana unfold in a dining room decked with vintage signage, college-sports memorabilia, and buzzing neon. Ragin Cajun also keeps customers in the know with a Craw Club and can customize buffet catering packages for off-site Acadian feasts, filling banquet halls with food, DJs, live zydeco bands, and complimentary gift bags filled with silent Xs.