The stars at night are big & bright...

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Post
buffetbuster
Porterhouse
2008/04/21 09:27:12
..Deep in the heart of Texas!!!

My cousin Johnny (aka Big Tex) and I will be spending the week driving around the Lone Star state. We will be doing plenty of sightseeing and eating, with the trip culminating with the Roadfood bus tour in Austin next Saturday. This should be a lot of fun!

Friday April 18

Our plane landed at Hobby Airport in Houston around 10:30PM, so the dining options were limited once we got out on the road. We spotted a Whataburger (open 24 hrs) and pulled in there. Johnny has never been to one and I have only ever been to the Feltner's Whataburger in Russellville, Arkansas. Anyway, the food was fine for under the circumstances, with the best being the greasy onion rings. I didn't care for my burger at all, but the strawberry shake was huge and extra thick. The service was friendly, but real slow and it took us much longer to eat than we had hoped.

Unfortunately, our hotel was new and our GPS wouldn't accept the address. We made a navigational error and ended up on the wrong side of the city. Whoops! We didn't get to our room until after 1:00AM.
No big deal.....we know better things are ahead!

Much more to come.....
buffetbuster
Porterhouse
RE: The stars at night are big & bright... 2008/04/21 09:51:04
Saturday April 19

Even though we didn't get a lot of sleep, we arrived at La Mexicana at 7:00AM when they opened.

We liked this place as soon as we walked in the door. Beautifully decorated, ultra-friendly staff and a huge menu. We were anticipating a really good meal and we weren't disappointed. It started off with chips and salsa.

Neither the red or green salsa were overly hot, but both still had a strong flavor. I could have eaten a lot of these!

Being the brave one, Johnny went for the menudo, which is only available on weekends.

While we were both glad to have tried it once, I don't think either one of us will be ordering it again anytime soon! Johnny was much happier with his delicious migas.


It is hard for me to pass up Huevos Rancheros for breakfast and the version here was especially good.

I sopped up the leftover salsa with the extra tortillas we were given. Also, as an ala carte item, I ordered a tasty taco chorizo con huevo, which looked like:


Despite the beautiful baked goods by the check out counter we were quite full and passed on them. Now, I do wish we had grabbed something for the road.

http://www.roadfood.com/Reviews/Writeup.aspx?ReviewID=2691&RefID=2700

Just a few blocks from La Mexicana, we spotted a donut/kolache place.

It was packed, which we took as a good sign. We bought some kolaches to take back to the room, but unfortunately, we didn't like anything we tried.

Much more to come.....
leethebard
Sirloin
RE: The stars at night are big & bright... 2008/04/21 10:20:51
Thanks for sharing. Great mexican food,freshly prepared is a real treat. Now I'm hungry!!!
kland01s
Filet Mignon
RE: The stars at night are big & bright... 2008/04/21 11:00:21
Looking forward to you taking us around Texas! Food looks great so far!
RE: The stars at night are big & bright... 2008/04/21 11:12:13
quote:
Originally posted by buffetbuster

Saturday April 19

Even though we didn't get a lot of sleep, we arrived at La Mexicana at 7:00AM when they opened.

Apparently your reputation preceded you...

No menudo for me, but I'd be happy with that plate of huevos.

Brad
blinky193
Hamburger
RE: The stars at night are big & bright... 2008/04/21 14:48:33
Hey Big Kolache! How's it going? Looks like you guys are having a great time so far...

I am just curious though, didn't you wonder why all those police cars were in the parking lot at La Mexicana? Or was it too early to notice?? I guess you figured a crime wasn't taking place, at 7:00 in the morning! They must have good donuts in there!
Hope you have a nice week. See ya later........... Ok, i'm going back to work now.......lol

Ps. You are not going to believe this, but the Bay City Rollers are playing on the radio right now!
buffetbuster
Porterhouse
RE: The stars at night are big & bright... 2008/04/21 18:03:35
The reason there are so many cars outside of La Mexicana is that I took my photo on the way out. But just like what I saw at Goody Goody Diner in St. Louis a few months ago, this place apparently let the police in a few minutes early. Since spotting police cars in the parking lot is usually a good Roadfood sign, I always like to see that. Of course, if I pull up and see the sirens on and the police have their guns drawn, I would generally consider that a BAD Roadfood sign.

Blinky193-
Thanks for the nice comments. Now get back to work!!!
uncledaveyo
Double Cheeseburger
RE: The stars at night are big & bright... 2008/04/21 18:19:07
That food looks pretty killer, thanks BuffBus!
wanderingjew
Sirloin
RE: The stars at night are big & bright... 2008/04/21 19:22:38
Buffetbuster
Great Report so far-

I've never had Menudo before- and truthfuly I don't know if I'd want to- but
La Mexicana looks like my kinda place!
Ort. Carlton.
Filet Mignon
RE: The stars at night are big & bright... 2008/04/21 19:51:02
quote:
Originally posted by buffetbuster
Saturday April 19 Even though we didn't get a lot of sleep, we arrived at La Mexicana at 7:00AM when they opened. Being the brave one, Johnny went for the menudo, which is only available on weekends.


Buffetbuster,
That sure looks gooood. It's been too long since I had a decent bowl of menudo. I'm going to check out as many Mexican eateries here to see just who serves it and who doesn't, and visit each one in turn.
It's probably an easy parallel to see that if I like livermush, I would also go for menudo. Why, I've even got a couple of 45s by them.
Tripically Balefully Bowllessly, Ort. Carlton in Spicy Athens, Georgia.
Ort. Carlton.
Filet Mignon
RE: The stars at night are big & bright... 2008/04/21 19:54:07
Buffetbuster,
While I'm at it, thanks for a great report! Am I correct in assuming that there is more to come? I'll be back to see.
Momentarily Unhungrily, Ort. Carlton in Well-Fed Athens, Georgia.
buffetbuster
Porterhouse
RE: The stars at night are big & bright... 2008/04/21 23:44:06
wanderingjew-
I think menudo was one of those things that Johnny wanted to say he tried once in his life and now he can say it. I did have one bite of it and although the taste wasn't bad, it was the texture more than anything else that seemed so foreign.

Ort-
I'm not the least surprised that you enjoy menudo. And there is plenty more to come!
buffetbuster
Porterhouse
RE: The stars at night are big & bright... 2008/04/22 00:14:47
Saturday April 19 cont.

After going back to the hotel to shower and get ready for the day, we drove to east of the city and the San Jacinto Monument. This is a 570 foot structure, with 220 ton star on the top.

This is to commemerate the battle that won Texas its independence from Mexico. They had a very well done movie about the history of the war and the battle and had a nice little museum. Still, the highlight was taking the elevator to the top for the view.

To the right, you can see the USS Texas and to the top left, you can barely see the Houston skyline in the distance. But what I will probably most remember from my trip out here is driving past the miles and miles of chemical plants and oil refineries in the area. I have never seen anything like it!

Time for lunch and we arrived at the Avalon Diner at a few minutes before noon and snagged two precious seats at the counter. Shortly, there was a considerable wait for a seat, so we got here just in time.

There is nothing about the strip mall exterior that says good Roadfood,

but the inside definitely says small town lunch counter.

Both Johnny and I got lemonades and we watched our waitress fresh squeeze the lemons. This is excellent lemonade!

We both also ordered malts, with me getting the banana and Johnny getting the butterscotch, which was especially good.

Here is our waitress using the milkshake mixer right in front of us, which is always a good sign!


We were both in the mood for burgers. Johnny got the bacon cheeseburger

with a side of thin, lightly battered onion rings. Loved them!


For me, I got the mushroom swiss burger

along with the lunch counter classic grilled cheese.


All of the food we had here was well above average. The guy sitting next to Johnny was by himself and spent a good portion of the time eavesdropping in on our conversation. He finally inquired about our trip, so we told him about our plans. What was odd was he said he ate at Avalon Diner every weekend. Yet, he asked us about the malts/shakes, onion rings and lemonade, because he had never tried them. Very strange!

http://www.roadfood.com/Reviews/Writeup.aspx?ReviewID=2973&RefID=2995

After stopping at the University of Houston bookstore where I bought a t-shirt, we had one more place to visit before going back to the hotel.

Much more to come.....
signman
Double Chili Cheeseburger
RE: The stars at night are big & bright... 2008/04/22 01:45:57
Great looking onion rings from Avalon. Can't wait for the next installment.
John A
Filet Mignon
RE: The stars at night are big & bright... 2008/04/22 07:36:38
You guys are doing it again BB, off and running on another of your terrific trip reports.
ann peeples
Sirloin
RE: The stars at night are big & bright... 2008/04/22 09:06:02
As usual,BB,a pleasure to follow you along on your trip...
billyboy
Double Chili Cheeseburger
RE: The stars at night are big & bright... 2008/04/22 16:03:19
BB, Col. Steve Austin doesn't have a thing on you and your cousin! You guys make it happen! Bigger, Stronger, Faster!! I love that view from the San Jacinto monument and those lemonades and burgers from the pharmacy looked fantastic.
CajunKing
Sirloin
RE: The stars at night are big & bright... 2008/04/22 16:34:24
BB

Good Looking food and surroundings, those malts look really good.

Have a great week+ in TX

joerogo
Filet Mignon
RE: The stars at night are big & bright... 2008/04/22 19:30:02
BB, Love the Huevos Rancheros for breakfast. Then again I could eat breakfast three times a day.

Looking forward too more.
uncledaveyo
Double Cheeseburger
RE: The stars at night are big & bright... 2008/04/22 19:58:12
I second the "great looking O-ringz"
buffetbuster
Porterhouse
RE: The stars at night are big & bright... 2008/04/23 17:04:00
Saturday April 19 cont.

We headed downtown to stop at James Coney Island.

Since there was no parking available near by, Johnny circled the block a few times, while I got in line.

Here is what we ended up with: two with chili, mustard and onion and two more with cheese added. Since Johnny loves onion rings, I grabbed him an order of that, too.

These were firm little wieners in a really tasty chili sauce. Good fresh onions, too. And although I usually like cheese on coneys, in this instance, I preferred the ones without. The onion rings were darker and crunchier than the ones from the Avalon Diner, but we still gave them a thumbs up.

http://www.jamesconeyisland.com/

After catching up on the sleep we missed the night before, we set out for dinner. We made the hour long drive up to Huntsville and visited the New Zion Baptist Missionary Church and their bbq.

Not only is this place reviewed here on Roadfood, I had someone tell me about this place in Toledo a few months ago. We were expecting the place to be quite busy, but when we arrived around 5:15 in the afternoon, we were the only customers. The building is low-slung with uneven floors and half of the only room being an open kitchen. Service is ultra-friendly and beautiful gospel music plays in the background. I went for the two meat plate, with sausage and brisket. Johnny got the three meat plate and added ribs.

The sausage had a crusty outside and a snap when you bit into it and the brisket was nice and tender. But the ribs were too tough, so says Johnny. We both got the yummy mustardy potato salad, but neither one of us cared for the bland beans.

For dessert, they had either pecan pie or buttermilk pie. Here is my buttermilk

and Johnny's supersweet pecan.

They originally gave me the pecan and when I corrected them, they told us to keep the extra piece of pecan for free. Since I don't like pecan pie, this made Johnny VERY happy.

This place has terrific Roadfood atmosphere, but frankly, the food was just a bit above average. If you are passing though Huntsville, it is worth a stop. But, I wouldn't drive out of my way again.

http://www.roadfood.com/Reviews/Overview.aspx?RefID=4157

Though we were tempted to go out later that night, we were both still tired and decided the rest was more necessary.

Much more to come.....

Nancypalooza
Filet Mignon
RE: The stars at night are big & bright... 2008/04/23 17:16:50
Oh my stomach started growling at the picture of the dogs and rings. Dayum. And I would have such a hard time deciding between lemonade and a shake that I would also have to get both, I believe.
The Travelin Man
Filet Mignon
RE: The stars at night are big & bright... 2008/04/23 18:31:32
Excellent report on Houston - one of my favorite cities. I am a fan of Avalon Diner - good burgers and the homemade shakes. I am told that the fresh-squeezed lime-aid is even better than the lemonade. Somewhere I have a photo of the diner, which is neatly decorated that I would gladly post - but, it doesn't seem to be in my flickr account.

I have always wanted to go to Huntsville for the church barbecue and it just never fit into my travel plans. Now, it appears that it need not be the necessity I thought.

Houston is a great burger town, Buddy...I hope there are some more burger photos coming soon!

ETA: Duhhh....you had burgers at Avalon.
buffetbuster
Porterhouse
RE: The stars at night are big & bright... 2008/04/23 21:37:29
Travelin Man-
We have had some really good burgers on this trip so far, but the big prize got away. I feel I let you down, but we never could make it up to Ponder.

Johnny and I just returned from a dinner with ChiTownDiner at Hoover's. As good as the food was, the company was even better. He is a real pleasure to be around!
plb
Double Chili Cheeseburger
RE: The stars at night are big & bright... 2008/04/23 21:43:28
Small world. I happened to be in Houston last week and ate at: La Mexicana, Avalon Diner (had the grilled cheese), New Zion Baptist Missionary Church (I agree, great atmosphere but so-so food), and visited the San Jacinto Monument (and the battleship Texas nearby). Also ate at Goode (too dry brisket and OK sausage), Otto's (very good burger), Lankford Grocery, Taste of Texas, and House of Pies. Sorry no pictures, my wife took the camera on her trip to Egypt that week (she get to go to the other side of the world and I got to go down the road to Houston).
Ort. Carlton.
Filet Mignon
RE: The stars at night are big & bright... 2008/04/23 21:54:58
Buffetbuster,
Thanks a gazillion for another glowing report. At least you didn't get that way by going on a tour of a leaking nuclear reactor....
With Atommyfull Of Late Lunch, Ort. Carlton in Ionic-Columned Athens, Georgia.
The Travelin Man
Filet Mignon
RE: The stars at night are big & bright... 2008/04/24 10:23:45
quote:
Originally posted by buffetbuster

Travelin Man-
We have had some really good burgers on this trip so far, but the big prize got away. I feel I let you down, but we never could make it up to Ponder.

Johnny and I just returned from a dinner with ChiTownDiner at Hoover's. As good as the food was, the company was even better. He is a real pleasure to be around!


No worries, Amigo. It is you who should feel let down! Besides, I was a little bummed when you added Penn Drug to your list of accomplishments. I was pretty sure that I was the only who tracks the places they've been who had that one! I can still hold on to Ponder!

Besides, I am not sure which place you "missed" out on more - Ponder Steakhouse or Williams Smokehouse? When I first read your report, I remembered you saying something about wanting to go there - and it made me reminisce about the place. IMHO, Williams had the preeminent BBQ in the Houston area.

I will politely wait for the photos, but can I assume that you had the chicken fried steak at Hoover's?
mr chips
Filet Mignon
RE: The stars at night are big & bright... 2008/04/25 00:57:36
As always, a great report. Wish i were with you. See you sometime.
Nancypalooza
Filet Mignon
RE: The stars at night are big & bright... 2008/04/25 06:56:03
chips I have a feeling most of us who are at home this weekend will be wishing we were with bb and the others. :)
Sundancer7
Fire Safety Admin
RE: The stars at night are big & bright... 2008/04/25 08:33:35
BB, I spent six months in Houston and I had a chance to visit the tower out on the east end and I also did the elevator thing. Great view of the harbor. I never knew that so many oil places existed until I drove out there. Miles of them.

My Houston experience was difficult but I had a chance to enjoy many of their taco and kolache places. Some good doughnut places around also.

Paul E. Smith
Knoxville, TN
buffetbuster
Porterhouse
RE: The stars at night are big & bright... 2008/04/25 18:28:52
Sunday April 20

Johnny and I got up early to make the five hour drive to Texarkana. We decided we would just find a breakfast place on the way. Getting no further than Humble before we needed gas, we found a donut/kolache place called Donut Junction in a strip mall. These kolaches were significantly better than the ones from the day before. The bread was soft, warm, with a nice sweet taste and the inside fillings tasted fresh. Here is the inside of a sausage & cheese kolache.

As good as the kolaches were, I thought the donuts were just average.

While driving through the town of Nacogdoches, we got a flat tire. With expert skill, Johnny had the flat fixed and us back on the road in no time.

Arriving in Texarkana right at noon, we faced a big after church crowd walking into Bryce's Cafeteria.

I seriously love cafeterias and the food here is especially good. Here is a view of what I ended up with on my tray.

From top left clockwise: deviled eggs, chopped spinach salad, chocolate chess pie, banana cream pie, dinner roll, chicken & dumplings with green beans and mac & cheese, squash casserole, water and sweet ice tea. The standout here was the salty/porky green beans, made the way our grandmother used to make them.

For Johnny, he went for the fried chicken, with mac & cheese and broccoli.

The fried chicken had a nice crunchy crust and juicy meat, but didn't have the flavor of an elite fried chicken. The mac & cheese was nice and cheesy and the broccoli cooked until it was soft and limp.

The sweet squash casserole was a big hit with both of us.


Dessert-wise, the biggest hit was the phenomenal peach cobbler.

The peaches tasted fresh (although they most likely weren't this time of year) and the cobbler part had a crisp outside and soft inside. We both thought that this cobbler was the best we have ever had.

Johnny's other desserts were the just average custard coconut pie and the super sweet karo coconut pie.


My desserts were the wonderful banana cream pie and the ultra-dense and rich chocolate chess pie.


Although we didn't love everything, there were enough well above items that we give Bryce's Cafeteria a huge thumbs up!

http://www.roadfood.com/Reviews/Writeup.aspx?ReviewID=290&RefID=290

Much more to come.....
buffetbuster
Porterhouse
RE: The stars at night are big & bright... 2008/04/25 18:39:05
Travelin Man-
Yeah, I really wish we had been able to eat at Williams Smokehouse, but what can you do. Hopefully, they will rebuild and I can eat there on my next trip to Houston.

Sorry about Penn Drug.....is there anyplace else you would like me to avoid?

plb-
That is a small world. I really, really wanted to love the food at the church in Huntsville, but it just wasn't anything special. Too bad!
CajunKing
Sirloin
RE: The stars at night are big & bright... 2008/04/25 19:44:47
oh man that choc chess pie looks awesome.....

dutchgirl
Junior Burger
RE: The stars at night are big & bright... 2008/04/26 09:29:06
Originally posted by buffetbuster

Saturday April 19 cont.

After going back to the hotel to shower and get ready for the day, we drove to east of the city and the San Jacinto Monument. This is a 570 foot structure, with 220 ton star on the top.

This is to commemerate the battle that won Texas its independence from Mexico. They had a very well done movie about the history of the war and the battle and had a nice little museum. Still, the highlight was taking the elevator to the top for the view.

To the right, you can see the USS Texas and to the top left, you can barely see the Houston skyline in the distance. But what I will probably most remember from my trip out here is driving past the miles and miles of chemical plants and oil refineries in the area. I have never seen anything like it!


These pictures almost brought a tear to my eye - fond memories of school field trips and severe childhood anxiety over that long elevator ride to the top. I grew up in this area - now in DFW, but it's funny how things can take you back - like this and those James' Coney Island dogs!
Thanks for such a wonderful report and trip down memory lane!
Dutchgirl
joerogo
Filet Mignon
RE: The stars at night are big & bright... 2008/04/26 17:55:34
BB, I have a very good friend who served on The Texas in WWII. That Ship saw a lot of action. He still talks about it almost every day. Thanks for the great Pics.

On a lighter note. While your off galavanting all over Texas, I just want you to know I got your back on the Home front.

Just got back from The South Side

[img]

I had the Double D. I only had one, even though the say nothing beats a pair of Double D's. Sausage, chipped steak, pepperoni, provolone, fried onions, hot peppers and sauce.

[img]

Well I don't want to hijack your great thread but I thought you might be homesick.
buffetbuster
Porterhouse
RE: The stars at night are big & bright... 2008/04/27 10:10:46
joerogo-
Thanks for holding down the fort, while I was gone! Between you and BuddyRoadhouse, you sure are making me want to get down to Fat Head's again ASAP!

dutchgirl-
I genuinely appreciate you letting me know what fond memories the Houston pictures brought you. That really made me feel good!
enginecapt
Filet Mignon
RE: The stars at night are big & bright... 2008/04/27 10:41:34
Just looking at that sandwich makes me want to jump on a plane to Yinzerland. N'at.
buffetbuster
Porterhouse
RE: The stars at night are big & bright... 2008/04/28 11:29:36
Sunday April 20 cont.

After arriving in Dallas, we made our first stop at Celebration

to have a late lunch. This is a nicer place, with dark interior lighting and unusual copper tables, which will be plain to see in some of the photos.

The meal started off with a nice assortment of bread.

My favorite was the blueberry muffins, while Johnny went for the jalapeno cornbread.

Next for me was a bowl of tortilla soup, which was nothing really note worthy. Since our main courses came out so quickly, I gave up on the soup early and never went back.

This place is a little strange in that, while Johnny and I ordered seperate entrees, the vegetables were served family style. The two we really enjoyed were the beautiful and lightly cooked broccoli

and the crunchy, salty fried okra.

Some colorful fruit salad came with dinner.


For our entrees, Johnny tried the extremely tender pot roast, which came with a side of horseradish sauce. He very much enjoyed the combination.


Since the menu says that a local newspaper picked them to have the best fried chicken in Dallas, I went for that.

It had a such a brittle crust, it reminded me of what I recently ate at Chicken House in Kansas. Very good fried chicken.

Lots of interesting dessert options here. Johnny went for the chocolate cream pie and I ordered the yummy banana pudding.


Along with all the good food, the young guy who waited on us did a great job. Another very, very good meal!

http://www.celebrationrestaurant.com/

Now being pretty full and fairly tired from all the driving, we checked into our hotel in Grand Prairie, between Dallas and Fort Worth.

Much more to come.....
Nancypalooza
Filet Mignon
RE: The stars at night are big & bright... 2008/04/28 11:38:00
Oh that banana pudding would pass my dad's 'banana in every bite' test. Cliff my man, you know how to use your time. :)
Twinwillow
Sirloin
RE: The stars at night are big & bright... 2008/04/28 12:06:30
Lucky you! For visiting Celebration while in Dallas. Lucky me! For working only 1/2 mile away. I eat lunch (and, sometimes dinner) there at least 2-3 times a week. been my favorite spot for 25 years. Btw, their fried catfish is the equal, if not superior to all others.
Sfreader
Double Cheeseburger
RE: The stars at night are big & bright... 2008/04/28 12:11:48
The photos of the rings and malt at Avalon Diner are making me hungry!

Keith
buffetbuster
Porterhouse
RE: The stars at night are big & bright... 2008/04/28 13:15:47
Sunday April 20 cont.

After napping at our hotel for a few hours, we were ready to go out for a late dinner. Being a Sunday night, options were limited. So, we drove to Fort Worth and Joe T. Garcia's.

For dinner, you have two options, enchiladas or fajitas. Everything is served family style, which Johnny and I like, since we are always sharing anyway. Here are my cheese enchiladas,

which tasted just fine, but his beef and chicken fajitas were excellent.

He actually used some of the tortillas, but I spent most of the meal just picking delicious pieces of tender beef off of the plate.

Another item we both thought was wonderful was the made in house guacamole, here seen with the hot pico de gallo.


Also coming on the side were a couple of loaded tacos

and the nachos and chips.

The nachos had small cut of pieces of jalapeno and we wish we had received a much bigger portion of those.

http://www.roadfood.com/Reviews/Writeup.aspx?ReviewID=422&RefID=422

Since it was late by now, we headed back to the hotel for the night.

Much more to come.....
buffetbuster
Porterhouse
RE: The stars at night are big & bright... 2008/04/28 13:45:36
twinwillow-
I can certainly see why you like Celebration so much. Now here is a VERY important question. I had a tough decision to make and went with the banana pudding over the peach cobbler. Did I make the right decision? You are very lucky to live/work so close.

Nancypalooza-
Your dad sounds like a smart man! What is interesting about banana pudding is that it can come in so many different styles and variations. But what they served to me here at Celebration is exactly what I want.

The Travelin Man
Filet Mignon
RE: The stars at night are big & bright... 2008/04/28 13:47:34
quote:
Originally posted by buffetbuster

Sunday April 20 cont.

After arriving in Dallas, we made our first stop at Celebration



You do know how jealous I am of this whole trip, right?

For some reason, I thought it was Celebration that won the entire chicken fried steak competition that was done by occasional Roadfood.com contributor Scott -- DFW on his site[url='http://www.dallasfood.org/modules.php?name=News&file=article&sid=71']DallasFood.org[/url]. Turns out that they didn't win, but they came darn close to Top 10 (out of 50 that were reviewed in the Dallas area alone). I haven't had much time to do a lot of exploration eating in Dallas the last couple of times that I have been there, but I would like to check out a few of the places that he recommends.

Joe T. Garcia's almost makes me wish that I liked Tex-Mex at all. I don't suppose you made it to Railhead BBQ in Fort Worth while you were out there? That is quickly becoming my favorite BBQ in the Metroplex.
Sundancer7
Fire Safety Admin
RE: The stars at night are big & bright... 2008/04/28 14:16:12
I hate I missed the Texas thing this year. Mamaw Smith's 86th birthday party was Saturday night with a bunch of her friends and family at Louis on Broadway in Knoxville. Best spaghetti sauce in the USA. I could not miss it.

I wish I could have been with my friends Bushie, Traveling Man and Buffet Buster.

Did Rick F make it?

I have talked to Al about a six month meet up with those who wish instead of a annual Presidents day thing in February.

Paul E. Smith
Knoxville, TN
buffetbuster
Porterhouse
RE: The stars at night are big & bright... 2008/04/28 14:20:00
Paul-
We wish you could have joined us too, but family obigations always come first. I hope Mamaw Smith had a great birthday!

Yes, I was quite happy to RickF. and Janet come walking through the door at Threadgill's on Friday. They were also on the tour on Saturday.
ChiTownDiner
Filet Mignon
RE: The stars at night are big & bright... 2008/04/28 15:12:26
Cliff - What a great review to date...I love the reviews and the photos together.

Paul - RickF is doing great...got to speak with him on the tour. It was nice of Bushie to spend part of the day with us!
Bushie
Filet Mignon
RE: The stars at night are big & bright... 2008/04/28 21:26:06
Dang, what a trip!!! You and ChiTown both really did it up right. Thanks for your great reports, and please don't stop.

Sundance, I saw Rick, too. He looked good. Also met Janet, who is very sweet. We talked about previous escapades with you, but of course we had to leave out the juicy parts because she was there.
cecif
Double Chili Cheeseburger
RE: The stars at night are big & bright... 2008/04/28 22:15:28
Too tired to say more than.... WOW! (Awesome as always, BB...)
buffetbuster
Porterhouse
RE: The stars at night are big & bright... 2008/04/29 08:24:33
Monday April 21

We decided to sleep in on this day for two reasons. Johnny has been feeling really tired and sick, so we thought the extra rest would do him some good. And small town boys like us would undoubtedly be overwhelmed by the Dallas rush hour traffic. So we didn't head into the city until around 9:30.

We arrived at the legendary Sonny Bryan's just before they opened at 10:00AM.


Lots of interesting things on the menu board I would love to try.

Johnny went for the two meat plate (brisket and sausage) with sides of cole slaw and onion rings.

I can't remember if his meat came sauced or unsauced and he applied it before I had a chance to snap the photo. Johnny enjoyed everything on his plate, but his favorite was the Texas sized onion rings. He saved one for me, but I didn't particularly care for it.

I went for the brisket sandwich with sides of potato salad and beans.

The brisket was nice and tender and although not on the level of some of the great barbecue parlors I would eat at later in the trip, this is still high quality 'que.

To drink, both of us got Big Red, which was a first for us. I think I remember Michael Stern calling it "Bazooka gum flavored soda pop". They also had Triple XXX root beer on the soda fountain, but we didn't see it in time.

I have no doubt that my opinion of the food was enhanced by the terrific Roadfood atmosphere of the place. Everywhere you look, there was something interesting to look at or take a picture. The seats themselves are old classroom desks,

that a couple of big boys like Johnny and I easily fit.

The people here were also very nice. When I was ordering, I noticed a nice cake in a pan set aside, so I inquired about having a piece. They told me it was something the owner baked for an employee birthday. On the way out, as I was buying a t-shirt, the owner asked if we wanted a free piece of the carrot cake to take with us.

http://www.roadfood.com/Reviews/Writeup.aspx?ReviewID=416&RefID=416

We headed downtown and spent a few hours visiting the Sixth Floor Museum at the Kennedy assassination site. You can't take any photos inside the building itself, so here are couple familiar views from the outside.



Neither Johnny or I said too much while we were here and talked very little about it afterwards. I still have mixed feelings about the place. It was very odd to be somewhere for the first time, yet you felt you knew so intimately from reading about it and seeing it in news and movies for years. While I was very glad I came here and saw it, I don't think I would ever came back. Such a tragedy.

Much more to come.....
Nancypalooza
Filet Mignon
RE: The stars at night are big & bright... 2008/04/29 09:28:33
Cliff have you ever heard of Sarah Vowell? You might like a book of hers, 'Assassination Vacation.'
buffetbuster
Porterhouse
RE: The stars at night are big & bright... 2008/04/29 09:34:53
Nancypalooza-
No I have not heard of her.....thanks for the tip.
i95
Double Chili Cheeseburger
RE: The stars at night are big & bright... 2008/04/29 09:37:17
I wonder how Lee Harvey Oswald liked his eggs.




wanderingjew
Sirloin
RE: The stars at night are big & bright... 2008/04/29 09:40:00
quote:
Originally posted by i95

I wonder how Lee Harvey Oswald liked his eggs.


I think he preferred White Eggs over Brown Eggs
Nancypalooza
Filet Mignon
RE: The stars at night are big & bright... 2008/04/29 09:41:55
With ketchup on them.
i95
Double Chili Cheeseburger
RE: The stars at night are big & bright... 2008/04/29 10:03:12
Alright, I was serious. In the immortal words of Jim Mora, you people are "sick...sick in the head."
signman
Double Chili Cheeseburger
RE: The stars at night are big & bright... 2008/04/29 10:58:39
Maybe this is where he ate.

www.leeharveys.com
porkbeaks
Double Chili Cheeseburger
RE: The stars at night are big & bright... 2008/04/29 11:27:04
quote:
Originally posted by signman

Maybe this is where he ate.

www.leeharveys.com


Lee Harvey's was voted:
Best Bar in Dallas for 2006 by Dallas Observer Readers!
Best Onion Rings, Dallas Observer 2007
Best Outdoor Head, Dallas Observer 2007

Do you think there was a category for "Indoor Head" pb
buffetbuster
Porterhouse
RE: The stars at night are big & bright... 2008/04/29 13:50:09
Monday April 21 cont.

As soon as we were done looking around Dealey Plaza, we went straight to Mecca

for a late lunch. We barely made it in time, since they close early, at 2:30PM.

For some reason, this restaurant just didn't fit into my preconceived notions of the area. It felt more like a Nashville meat & three. The service was super friendly and I knew I really liked the place as soon as I saw bread pudding w/ whiskey sauce listed as a vegetable!


Johnny was eager to try the chicken fried steak

with green bean casserole and especially good made from scratch mashed potatoes. Believe it or not, this was the first time he has had chicken fried steak. Thanks to ChiTownDiner later in the trip, it would be far from the last!

Since I had barbecue for lunch and knew we were having barbecue for dinner, I wanted something without meat for a change. Having only had a cheese pimiento sandwich one time before, I decided to try it.

This was a fine sandwich, but obviously no match for what I ate at Henpeck Market outside Nashville on last year's bus tour. Good fried okra was my side dish.

Being a big vegetable lover, Johnny went for the bread pudding for dessert.

He thought the sauce was a little overwhelming for the dish, but otherwise enjoyed it. I went for the peach cobbler

which was just okay.

I very much enjoyed the atmosphere at Mecca and wonder if I had ordered better, would I have liked it more. Still, I would definitely go back.

After a quick stop at the SMU (Southern Methodist University) bookstore, we headed back to our hotel before the rush hour traffic got too bad.

Much more to come.....
CajunKing
Sirloin
RE: The stars at night are big & bright... 2008/04/29 14:41:04

Wow, there really was someone on the grassy knoll!!

Cliff & Johnny

Looks like you are having a great trip have safe travels and good eats!
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