Monday, May 30, 2011

Houston's HIWI Co-founder Randy Twaddle

With much excitement, I recently saw a client of mine, Randy Twaddle, on the History Channel's "How the States Got Their Shapes" with Brian Unger.  I about fell out of my chair upon seeing him appear on this random show I happen to be watching.  Here he's being interviewed by Brian Unger about Houston's infamous no zoning laws in front of the Beer Can house, which is rare for a metropolitan city in the US.

It's just strange how I've noticed Randy's ubiquitous presence in Houston once meeting him.  A very talented and successful artist known for his drawings and designs in art exhibits nationwide, co-founder of ttweak, and co-creator of HIWI (Houston, It's Worth It), as well as a designer of rugs exhitibed and sold at Carol Piper Rugs.  He's gone out on his own now, he'll be presented in the Moody Gallery at  2815 Colquitt  Houston, 77098 next Saturday, June 4, @6-8pm.

He's an amazing artist!  Go check him out at!

I would have no idea how this piece is put together, but he apparently traces the transistor, modifies/sections off the piece, then carefully pours coffee onto the canvas.  Goregous! 

Sunday, May 15, 2011

Food Truck Festival

It would seem, the food truck phenomenon is officially here in Houston. Most early FT innovators made their presence known at this years FT Festival this past weekend on HCC's west loop campus. Buzz worthy names like Bernie's Burger Bus, Oh My Gogi, Frosted Berry, all present with long lines or crowds formed at their windows waiting patiently for their number.

Oh My Gogi
With minimal options and at Oh My Gogi's suggestion, I ordered the beef quesadillas.  I rate it a 3 on a 5 scale.  Rebecca thought it was a 5!  I didn't like the sweetness.  It had kimchi in it too, interesting, I wonder what the non asians thought about it.  The guys at Oh My Gogi are not Korean.  Actually, I heard they're from Austin.  Most Houston-former-Austinites are familiar with these guys.  Before Reb tried the quesadilla she said she had tried the truck before in Austin and said it was ok.  Apparently she's changed her mind and loves it, said she's going to try to make the quesdilla at home.

Eatsie Boys
Also, minimal selections left, we ordered the Philly Cheesesteak at the suggestion of Eatsie Boys.  I thought this was really good, warm, crispy bread, steak was flavorful, and the cheese was different.  Not your typical cheese that comes with a philly cheese steak sandwich, but I did like it.  It looked like thousand island, but tasted subtly cheesy.  My rating was a 4, Reb's was 3.  I liked the branding of the Eastie Boys truck the most.  The guys were just oozing coolness.  The guy that helped us order had 80s looking pink sunglasses and he made them look really cool.  They seemed fun.

Green Seed Vegan
We got Kale chips and a brownie tasted healthy, not very good.  I liked the idea, but I don't recommend this truck at all.  They need to keep developing their items and make them tastier.

Fusion Taco 
At Fusion Taco's suggestion, we got the lettuce beef wrap and sweet potato fries.  To my surprise this was not only really good, but the best in my opinion.  This came in 4th for Reb, but I gave it a 5.  We both agreed the lettuce wrap was really good.  Good flavors, texture, cilantro, basil, yum, so good. The sweet potato fries were really good too.  Crispy and dressed with this creamy spicy sauce, that was delicious.  Fusion Taco is awesome, definitely a go try! 

Angie's Cake Balls

By the time we got here, there were only 3 flavors left.  Angie suggested the Ginger Beer and we liked that one.  We also got the vanilla on chocolate and that was disgusting to me.  It was all mushy and not worth the caloreis so, I spit it out. :)

I mostly just went to the known namers, the others I didn't want to waste stomach space on.  I thought Fusion Taco was awesome.  Oh My Gogi, I was disappointed by.  It wasn't horrible, but it wasn't great in my opinion.  I will give it another try, next time the Korean beef taco.  Frosted Betty was present, but sold out. 

I thought FT Festival idea was fun.  We got there late so it wasn't as great, but it doesn't matter because once you're finished eating, you really just end up leaving because there wasn't much else to do.  Regardless, I'm so glad I got a chance to go to this event.  I've been wanting to try these specific food trucks.  You probably don't know this, but I read an article in a foodie magazine about how many restrictions these food trucks have.  This FT phenomenon is just hitting Houston, now probably at the beginning of the tipping point, but they need a lot of support.  So, go and find one and grab lunch there because it's fun, cheap and good!

I'll definitely be at this Food Truck Friday event, starting June 24.  Hope to see ya there!

Friday, May 13, 2011

District 7 Diner in Midtown

My first visit at District 7 Midtown, is that weird?  I've never known anyone to have gone there till I met Buddy.  He says they have a really good Mahi Mahi burger, so that's where we decide to go.  I order the Kobe beef burger at our server's suggestion and he got the seared tuna burger.  I'm always reluctant to try seared tuna anywhere other than a sushi or fine dining restaurant.  As we all know, I'm very sensitive to fishiness.  I tried his tuna burger and I didn't taste a hint of fishiness, that means it was good!  My Kobe burger was fairly good, not really Kobe, couldn't be.  I think all these restaurants having a Kobe item on their menu, which really isn't, I think, only raises expectations and aims to disappointment.  I digress.

Fries were nice fat diner fries.  I asked the owner, who's extremely outgoing and friendly, his name and I forgot it but it starts with a "P".  I'm sorry, bad blogger!  But, apparently, he used to own Table Seven off of Shepherd near BRC.  He said he sold it, but it was probably a good thing.  I blogged about Table Seven, had the blackened tostada, which was really good.  However, my lunchmates didn't like what they got, minus the other that had the same blackened tostada.  They have additional District 7 diners, one in the heart of downtown, for business professionals and another near the ball park. 

My overall experience was good.  Atmosphere has a good energy, busy and crowded, and food is good, staff good.  Definitely a great spot for downtown folks.

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Charming 2-3/2 bungalow $339,900 (Houston Heights)


On a tree-lined street in Houston Heights, rests a charming 2-3/2 expanded bungalow, boasting great space, open floor plan, abundance of natural light, and bright rooms. Interior features include bay windows, original hardwoods, and an updated kitchen, pantry, breakfast room and bathroom. Exterior features include ample storage space under the expansion, a relaxing outdoor deck and a secluded Arbor deck great for entertaining or retreating to. All info per seller.

Listing Price: $339,900 Address 1406 Columbia St
City Houston
Zip Code: 77008-4533
Subdivision: Houston Heights
Property Type: Single Family Homes
Status: Active on Market
Bedrooms: 2 - 3 Bedroom(s)
Baths: 2 Full & 0 Half Bath(s)
Garage: 0 Car
Stories: 1 Story
Style: Traditional
Year Built: 1930 / Appraisal District
Building Sqft: 1,743 / Appraisal District
Lotsize: 5,000 / Appraisal District
Maintenance Fee: $0 annually
Mrkt Area: Heights
Key Map® : PAGE 453W
MLS# / Area: 37772158 / 9-Central North

Soo Kim
Greenwood King Properties

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Revival Market in the Heights

Just opened a few months back.  Ryan Pera resigned from The Grove joined Morgan Weber of Revival Meats to open Revival Market in the old McCain's Market located on Heights and White Oak.  They sell locally reaised meats, prepare charcuterie (including freesh and cured sausages, pate and confits) and make their own condiments.  They also feature a deli, Slow Dough Bread Co and cheeses selected by Houston Dairy Maids, and also include ready-to-eat foods for carryout.

On opening I hadn't heard very good things, heard it was overpriced, it needs a lot of work, and hardly any seating, not to mention the food was just ok.  Needless to say, I didn't need to lower any expectations.  I was envisioning something just a little more decorated than McCains, but basically the same thing.  I took Jay with me and arrived first, which was great because I thought it was really cozy and cute inside, gave me enough time to walk around and snap some photos.  Lots of cool things, flavored olive oil like Oil & Wine in City Centre, but not as heavy of selection.  Locally grown veggies and fruits, that means healthy, but expensive.  I just thought it was really neat inside, they had herbs, teas, oils, veggies, fruits, cured meats, dairy, deli, sandwiches, etc.  Nice little local Heights shop.

At the suggestion of staff, I got the BLT with coleslaw and Jay got the Dog with salad.  I also got a cupcake, shoot, i forgot the name, it was the salt something.  Chocolate cake with a hard creamish top.  I liked my sandwich, I thought the bread was so soft and good.  The rest of it was a nice combination, thin, but good.  Jay got the dog, which I had a taste of and the bread was similar to that which comes with a bagel dog, good!  His salad was fine and the cupcake was fine.  I wouldn't be going there specifically to get a cupcake or anything, it is a cured meats market. 

To confirm the rumours, it was a bit pricey. They had the Vietnamese Sandwich, which is normally $3, for $8!!  That's outrageous!  Can't be better than a Vietnamese place, I'll have to try it next time.  Their seating area was small, maybe five small two top tables and a handful outside, but that was fine with me.  I thought it was a lot more beefed up than the old McCain's. It seemed full and the decor was nice.  They had much more items than McCain's sad little set up, I liked it, nice atmosphere.  They also get a decent crowd and staff, friendly.

By the way, they also had kimchi in the fridge!  I ased the guy behind the deli about it, he said the wife of the owner is Korean!  I like his taste! :)  Ok, definitely a go try.

Revival Market
550 Heights Blvd
Houston, TX 77008