Messin' with Texas

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mar52
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Re:Messin' with Texas 2012/06/04 16:15:53 (permalink)
Loving your report as always.
 
I'd like to chime in on the elote.
 
Elote at first was the term for corn on the cob.  It morphed somewhere to also include the bowl of corn kernels.
 
I've had the elote cob and bowl in Baja California. The difference was world's apart.  The cob is roasted corn, slathered with mayonnaise then doused with lime juice, chili powder and Cojita Cheese which is a sharp cheese similar to parmesan.  Some places also squirt it with a liquid hot sauce.
 
The bowl of elote I had in Tijuana was a bowl of canned corn kernels topped with a dollop of mayonnaise, squirted with lime juice and topped with the Cojita and chili powder.  Not really good at all.
 
The absolute best elote I've had was in Boyle Heights, CA AKA East Los Angeles on Cesar Chavez Boulevard which used to be known as Brooklyn Avenue.
 
It's the elote of my dreams.  The description is quite similar to the cob elote described above with one difference.  They used what they called Field Corn.  Corn that has changed from being a sweet, right off of stalk cob to a pasty, carb tasting dense kernel that was outstanding with the toppings.
 
Search it out.  It's worth it.
#61
Michael Hoffman
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Re:Messin' with Texas 2012/06/04 16:27:18 (permalink)
Field corn is better than sweet corn. At least it is when you're a kid and you swipe it from the field where it's growing and eat it right there at the stalk.
#62
wanderingjew
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Re:Messin' with Texas 2012/06/04 18:14:14 (permalink)
Wow, I didn't know that the one item I considered one of the least favorite of the trip would be such a hot topic. Mayo or Sour Cream (or both) I don't think either would make it any more palatable for me.
 
I do find it interesting in Milwfoodlover's video, they refer to crema, which they substitute using both sour cream and mayo, When I make my mahi fish tacos at home (when I go into extreme health kick dieting) for the white sauce I use one part low fat mayo, two parts low fat sour cream along with whole food's mexican fiesta spices and freshly squeezed lime juice..
 
Buffetbuster,
 
it's possible the Elvis Pie at the Texan Cafe could be in the # 1 pie spot for the year- we'll see- the year is barely half over.
 
 
 
#63
wanderingjew
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Re:Messin' with Texas 2012/06/04 18:56:53 (permalink)
Sunday April 29
 
 
I returned downtown for one last good cup of coffee at Halycon and one final walk around the downtown area. 
After returning to my hotel north of town I had one more meal left before I continued on to San Antonio to fly back home...
 
No one should leave Texas without a good bowl of red....present company included..
 

 
Well....they're open
 
Texas Chili Parlor
 
Recommended by Bushie  when I first visited Austin back in 2005 for CAT duty, Texas Chili Parlor eventually made it's way to The Stern's 500 places to eat Book... After a 7 year absence I'm really looking forward..
 
Once again before I entered, the sign across the street caught my attention..
 

 
 You all know I'm looking at the Austin's best coffee sign- I know the rest of you are looking at the "bacon cookies and and ice cream" sign.
 
Anyway, back to Texas Chili Parlor
 
The interior of the place  looks exactly like what I would expect a  chili parlor to look like.
 

 
at least one that's in Texas...
 
I began with a side of Chips and Queso
 

 
The chips were very pedestrian, however the queso had a slight jalapeno bite....
 
However this is why I'm here....
 

 
A nice big beefy bowl of chili....with a side of raw onion and jalapeno....no beans....no cheese....just the basics...
 
With the option of ordering "X" "XX" or "XXX" (you need to sign a waiver for the last one)  , you can even order habanero, white chili or black bean and elgin sausageI ordered the "XX" - certainly spicy but not overbearingly so.....The cumin laced bowl of red is everything that it lives up to be.....
 
After lunch I drove back to San Antonio to fly home.....the story doesn't end there...
The rest of the trip is just a rant- Of course the trip began with transportation issues back in Arizona and it's going to end with transportation issues...
 
As I was boarding the plane, I was forced to check my carry on bag (on Southwest- checked baggage is free)  even though I've carried it on board many times in the past- no big deal. When I arrived in Chicago to change planes, I realized I couldn't take a photo of my Chicago Style Dog at the Airport's  Gold Coast Hot Dog concession stand which might I add, had some of the nastiest cheese fries I've ever had ( Weiners Circle or Poochie's they aint) I should have just had two dogs instead...
 
The clincher is they had to do a plane swap for my  flight back to Providence (that flight was still in Atlanta!)
So instead of arriving in Providence before just before 11pm, I ended up getting home just after 2am. ...Thankfully I had planned on taking the morning off at work anyway.....
 
I will conclude with epilogue and foot notes (for both Arizona and Texas)  later in the week 
post edited by wanderingjew - 2012/06/04 21:50:29
#64
Foodbme
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Re:Messin' with Texas 2012/06/04 19:11:35 (permalink)
That Bowl of Red looks like the real deal!
#65
billyboy
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Re:Messin' with Texas 2012/06/05 01:25:54 (permalink)
WJ, love this report! Thanks! When you showed that sign across the street all I saw was poutine, chicken & waffles and a Chicago hot dog and thought, "This must be driving WJ crazy!"
#66
wanderingjew
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Re:Messin' with Texas 2012/06/05 08:09:46 (permalink)
Billyboy
 
Its stuff like that which "keeps Austin weird"
#67
ScreamingChicken
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Re:Messin' with Texas 2012/06/05 08:13:40 (permalink)
Hmmm...the bowl of chili plus the unusual offerings across the street got me thinking:
 
French fries + chili + cheese curds = "Texas Poutine"?
#68
billyboy
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Re:Messin' with Texas 2012/06/05 09:44:24 (permalink)
WJ, I forgot to ask you:  was the bowl of Texas Red made with ground beef, chunks of steak/sirloin, etc..., or a combination of both?  There's a place in NYC (of course!) that makes what they call a Bowl O' Texas Red (no beans, tomatoes or ground beef) with chunks of beef, chiles and spices and I can't get enough of it!  Curious as to how accurate/how far off the mark it is.
#69
wanderingjew
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Re:Messin' with Texas 2012/06/05 10:25:14 (permalink)
Billyboy
 
I didn't mention it, but when I first visited 7 years ago, it seemed to be all chunks, when I last visited it seemed to be more of a combination- either way it was still just as good as I remembered. If I return, I may venture out and try the XXX
#70
Foodbme
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Re:Messin' with Texas 2012/06/05 18:16:22 (permalink)
ScreamingChicken
Hmmm...the bowl of chili plus the unusual offerings across the street got me thinking:
French fries + chili + cheese curds = "Texas Poutine"?

Your recipe is 2/3 correct!
Substitute Home Fries (NOT Hash Browns) for French Fries and you've got it!
#71
Dr. L.
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Re:Messin' with Texas 2012/06/06 01:12:54 (permalink)
May I gently correct you:  The town across from Del Rio, is Acuna.  Piedras Negras is 50 miles further south along the border, across from Eagle Pass, TX. 
 
I graduated HS in DR and hunted dove in Eagle Pass, WBW.
My old stompin' grounds.
#72
ann peeples
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Re:Messin' with Texas 2012/06/06 18:00:14 (permalink)
WJ, you had some mighty fine eats on this leg of the trip! Please accept my thanks for the wonderful report, and letting me live vicariously thru your travels.
#73
Michael Hoffman
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Re:Messin' with Texas 2012/06/06 18:15:13 (permalink)
You done good Dale. Thanks for a terrific report.
 
By the way, Lisa and I expect to be in Connecticut next week. We hope we'll be able to work in a visit.
#74
wanderingjew
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Re:Messin' with Texas 2012/06/06 19:34:24 (permalink)
Ann,
 
My pleasure...
 
Michael
 
I'll be in Pittsburgh from 6/15 thru 6/18
If you and and Lisa will  be in Eastern CT or RI before or afterwards let me know and perhaps we can meet for dinner.
#75
Michael Hoffman
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Re:Messin' with Texas 2012/06/06 19:57:27 (permalink)
We'll be getting to Connecticut on the 13th, and I hope we'll be there through the following Tuesday or Wednesday. We'll see what happens. After eating in and around New Haven (Pepe's, Louis Lunch, etc.) we'll be in the eastern end of the state.
#76
will_work_4_bbq
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Re:Messin' with Texas 2012/06/06 22:20:19 (permalink)
Great report - both parts!  I really enjoyed it.
#77
wanderingjew
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Re:Messin' with Texas 2012/06/07 08:05:45 (permalink)
Michael,
 
give me a shout, Tuesday the 19th or Wednesday the 20th would certainly work if you find yourselves in Eastern CT on one of those evenings.
 
Lynn
 
Thanks. Now that I'm done with this report. I'm probably going to start doing a few restaurant reviews- and hopefully will get those out of the way by the end of summer. BTW Miss Myra's Pit BBQ in suburban Birmingham will be one of them
 
I'll try to do the epilogue and footnotes this evening.
 
#78
wanderingjew
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Re:Messin' with Texas 2012/06/07 20:45:55 (permalink)
Epilogue and Footnotes
 
This will be copied to both trip reports..
 
Non Roadfood Highlights:
 
-No Rain!
-Chase Field with the Roof open
-San Xavier Mission
-Tucson Mountain Park
-Sabino Canyon
-Fiesta Week in San Antonio
-Getting together with Foodbme and Bushie
 
Non Roadfood Disappointments:
-transportation issues at the beginning (long long rental car lines) and end of the trip (flight home delayed 3 hours)
-temps averaging 15-20 degees above average during the entire trip
-only 2 floors open at the LBJ Library due to renovations
 
Roadfood Highlights
 
Sonoran Dog at El Guero Canelo - Tucson
Carne Asada Tacos at Pico De Gallo - Tucson
Chips and Salsa at Rosita's Place Phoenix
Horchata at Rosita's Place Phoenix
Green Corn Tamales at La Tolteca Restaurant and Market- Phoenix
Bean Burger at Chris Madrid's- San Antonio
Beef Barbacoa Puffy Tacos at Taqueria La Huasteca-  San Antonio
Beef Rib at J Mueller's - Austin
Chicken Fried Steak at Hoover's Cooking - Austin
BBQ at Smitty's Market- Lockhart TX
Best Ice Cream at Sands of Time Ice Cream- Austin TX
Best Pie- Elvis Pie at Texas Cafe- Hutto TX
Best Coffee at Crave- Tucson AZ
 Runner Up at  Halycon- Austin TX
Best Beer- Kilt Lifter at Four Peaks Brewery- Tempe AZ
 Runner Up- Black Lager (Rahr and Sons in Ft Worth TX)- at a bar - Hutto TX
 
 
Roadfood Disappointment
 
-Travelin Manned at the Tamale Store in Phoenix AZ
-Corn in a Cup at Taqueria La Huasteca in San Antonio TX
-Chipotle Cole Slaw at J Mueller's in Austin TX
-Coconut Cream Pie at City Cafe- Elgin TX
-Missing out on trying King Ranch Casserole at Monument Cafe- Georgetown TX
-Being too full to check out the BBQ at City Market- Luling TX
 
 
 
 
 
#79
will_work_4_bbq
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Re:Messin' with Texas 2012/06/07 21:18:19 (permalink)
Fabulous trip!  I'd say the highlights far outweighed the disappointments.  But here is the unanswered question.....did you and Bushie wear Hawaiian shirts???  Sort of like a mini-Glee Club West?
#80
iceomat
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Re:Messin' with Texas 2012/06/08 01:51:05 (permalink)
WJ, that place across from the Texas Chili Parlor is called Frank and one of my good friends is part owner (he's a bacon and sausage nut). I've heard good things about the place, but unfortunately I've never been there.
#81
Foodbme
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Re:Messin' with Texas 2012/06/08 03:20:26 (permalink)
THANX! for including me in your Non-Roadfood Highlights. It was a pleasure meeting you as well even though I can't cover territory as fast as you when walking! Do you enter Speed Walking Races to keep in shape for your trips?
 
I'd like to meet up with any other Roadfooder's who come to the Valley of the Sun anytime. Just let me know when you'll be here.
Again WJ, your trip reports are outstanding both in narrative and photography. Thank You!
#82
wanderingjew
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Re:Messin' with Texas 2012/06/09 10:25:51 (permalink)
Lynn
 
I came prepared, however considering the fashionista that Bushie is he decided to break the mold and try something different.
 
iceomat
 
That's a coincidence.
Outside of the usual "regional Texas" offerings I'm amazed at the variety of restaurants in Austin.
 
Foodbme
 
Wish I could say I kept in shape for my last trip- that was a complete disaster. I have almost 11 weeks till my next big trip- and besides next weekend for the Pittsburgh tour- I'm preparing. In fact now that allergy season is over  I think I'm going to wake up early and do my walks in the morning instead of the evening.
post edited by wanderingjew - 2012/06/09 10:26:55
#83
Ahi Mpls.
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Re:Messin' with Texas 2012/06/09 12:54:54 (permalink)
 Man alive are you ever getting LAZY! 
  My friend Google Earth tells me that you walked a bit under 43 miles. What the heck is wrong with you?
 Unless you walked to J Mueller's... that would help. 
 
 "Corn in a Cup, The corn is on a string and ATTACHED to the cup"  
 
 I hope your drink wasn't trying to tell you something important.
      
#84
blackirondude
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Re:Messin' with Texas 2012/06/09 20:12:26 (permalink)
We did a trip through Austin and the Hill Country this spring and loved it.
 
Texas barbecue is amazing (love the flavor oak smoke imparts).  
 
Great report!
#85
agnesrob
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Re:Messin' with Texas 2012/06/10 08:41:07 (permalink)
I always look forward to reading your reports WJ! Thanks for posting!
#86
wanderingjew
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Re:Messin' with Texas 2012/06/10 11:24:41 (permalink)
Dawn
 
43 miles just isn't enough. I'd have to walk that in one day every day to burn off the stuff that I ate.
 
blackirondude
 
Texas style Q is certainly my favorite too. 


 
 agnesrob
 
good to hear from you- thanks
#87
kaszeta
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Re:Messin' with Texas 2012/06/29 23:50:50 (permalink)
Thanks for the thread, you gave me several good leads in San Antonio.
Having had two trips to Austin, one trip to San Antonio, and another to Houston in the last month, once the dust settles and I catch my breath, I'll probably have my own Texas thread to contribute.
A few places overlap, (JMueller, Smitty's, Chris Madrids, to name a few... indeed, if I was a week later I would have seen you at JMueller)
#88
Twinwillow
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Re:Messin' with Texas 2012/06/30 12:51:37 (permalink)
TGILIT!
#89
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Re:Messin' with Texas 2012/06/30 13:50:57 (permalink)
Brilliant report wanderingjew. Absolutely brilliant. I live in Austin and you hit central Texas like a runaway truck. A few notes:

One spot you missed in San Antonio that deserves your attention is Mendez Cafe. Tiny little cafe near the railroad tracks.Locals only spot and my favorite Mexican in a city with 1000s of good joints https://maps.google.com/maps?oe=utf-8&client=firefox-a&ie=UTF-8&q=mendez+cafe+san+antonio+texas&fb=1&gl=us&hq=mendez+cafe&hnear=0x865c58af04d00eaf:0x856e13b10a016bc,San+Antonio,+TX&cid=0,0,13844422363719236664&ei=JTbvT9fsFumM2gXbnazbCg&ved=0CIYBEPwSMAM&oi=local_group

John Mueller is truly putting out the best barbecue in Austin if not the state. I’ve never tried a side dish there [would only take up meat space] but that beef rib is really something special. Austin is waiting with bated breath for the showdown between him and Aaron Franklin of Franklin Barbecue. Mueller challenged Franklin to a showdown to decide once and for all who the king of Austin bbq is. I covered the affair http://www.scrumptiouschef.com/food/index.cfm/2012/3/9/John-Mueller-Throws-Down-The-GauntletChallenges-Aaron-Franklin-To-Battle-For-Barbecue-Supremacy

Hoover’s puts out a good plate of Texas chow, it’s a block from my house. Next time try Galloway Sandwich Shop [bad name-it’s a soul food joint] it’s a few blocks south of Hoover’s in a “bad” neighborhood. Mr. Galloway, his wife and his mom tag team the kitchen and put out a bunch of southern favorites straight out of antique cast iron pans. It’s under the radar but is my favorite meat n 3 in town.

Joe’s Bakery is an Austin classic. Next time you visit try the barbacoa, I’ve been on a barbacoa binge these past couple years and it’s one of the best versions in town.


Love Ross’ cafe up in north Austin. Their fried catfish is some of the best in town. Head next door to Mickey’s Thirsty I, next visit. It’s an old timey dive bar that opened up in 1933. Very cool little spot. Sometimes Mickey gets up on the tiny stage and wears out the harmonica.

I’m in the Black’s camp when it comes to Lockhart barbecue. Smitty’s sausage is good but I’ve had tough brisket there too many times. Another great Texas bar is right around the corner: Lilly’s. It’s dark, cold and they serve cheap beer.

Thanks for taking the time to write your trip up and add all those killer photos. Austin looks like a million bucks. Now if we could just dial the heat back a notch.
#90
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