Why isn't Kenny & Ziggy's (Houston, TX) reviewed on Roadfood?

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Mosca
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Why isn't Kenny & Ziggy's (Houston, TX) reviewed on Roadfood? - Mon, 04/2/12 9:40 AM
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I figure someone has to have an opinion, someone should have tried it. I was watching Diners/Drive-ins/Dives, and they were featured on a "customers tell us to try this place" segment.
 
Just going by the way they present themselves, it's got to be worth a taste. They cure their own corned beef and pastrami, they make all their baked goods (pies, cakes, pastries, bread and rolls, etc) from scratch, the servings are huge...
 
Okay, it's not Texas-regional, but if I were in Houston, and wanted a deli sandwich, and ate at a Subway because I didn't know Kenny & Ziggy's was nearby, I'd be pissed when I found out.
 
Even if it's BAD, someone should try it and say it doesn't live up to the hype!
 
Kenny's & Ziggy's
<message edited by Mosca on Mon, 04/2/12 9:41 AM>

wanderingjew
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Re:Why isn't Kenny & Ziggy's (Houston, TX) reviewed on Roadfood? - Mon, 04/2/12 9:53 AM
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I've been to at least a couple of dozen places over the last 3 or 4 years  that the Sterns have never reviewed (and probably never will) that should be reviewed- it's up to me to review them and I probably never will- I just don't do reviews- just trip reports.
 
I couldn't tell you about Kenny & Ziggy's, but I personally pretty much ignore just about everything on Diners Drive in and Dives (and Man vs Food)- to me these shows are the perfect example of what Roadfood is not
-I miss shows on the foodnetwork like "The Best Of" and "Food finds"- that was truly what roadfood was all about
 
Mosca- you gave me a great Idea to start a new  thread with roadfood worthy places I just haven't reviewed and note the trip report to refer to
 
<message edited by wanderingjew on Mon, 04/2/12 9:55 AM>

Mosca
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Re:Why isn't Kenny & Ziggy's (Houston, TX) reviewed on Roadfood? - Mon, 04/2/12 10:39 AM
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Yeah, I understand about DDD.  Sunday afternoon, bad weather, nothing else on and wasting time, etc. But I think you're wrong lumping DDD together with Man vs Food. Fieri looks like a tool, but his take on what he is doing, the general tenor of the show, is very close to that of Roadfood, and the Sterns' philosophy in general. DDD is really about the love of the food and the experience of sharing it.
 
Check Kenny & Ziggy's website, though. Ziggy is a 3rd generation deliman. His grandfather opened The Rialto, the family opened Berger's, Wally's, and The Griddle, in Manhattan, and his father and uncle opened Genard's on Madison Avenue. His cousin owned Woodrow Kosher Deli on Long Island. Ziggy studied at Cordon Bleu, and worked at Le Gavroche and The Waterside Inn in London. He seems to be about making the very best kosher and Eastern European food possible, and it just happens to be in Texas. I remember reading about delis being "slicer joints"; this guy makes his own deli meats, that's gotta make it worth trying!
 
 
<message edited by Mosca on Mon, 04/2/12 10:42 AM>

1bbqboy
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Re:Why isn't Kenny & Ziggy's (Houston, TX) reviewed on Roadfood? - Mon, 04/2/12 11:02 AM
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If Houston was in Connecticut....

buffetbuster
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Re:Why isn't Kenny & Ziggy's (Houston, TX) reviewed on Roadfood? - Mon, 04/2/12 11:07 AM
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Mosca-
When you say reviewed, do you mean that someone wrote about it in the Roadfood forums or an official Roadood review that is listed under restaurants?

Twinwillow
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Re:Why isn't Kenny & Ziggy's (Houston, TX) reviewed on Roadfood? - Mon, 04/2/12 11:21 AM
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I must agree with Mosca regarding the roadfood worthiness of DDD.
 
Recently, some of Dallas' best little spots have been filmed by Guy Fieri's DDD show here in Dallas. They will be aired over a period of time later this month.
 
I'm very familiar with the particular places he visited and I can tell you personally, they're all terrific Roadfood worthy little joints! Especially, Il Cane Rosso and Motor & Maple.
 
Regarding Kenny & Ziggy's, they had plans to open a store here in (deli poor) Dallas but essentially, they discovered the fact that Dallas' retail landlords are way too greedy.
 
Speaking personally, if I ever found myself in Houston, Kenny & Ziggy's is the first place I'd hit!

wanderingjew
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Re:Why isn't Kenny & Ziggy's (Houston, TX) reviewed on Roadfood? - Mon, 04/2/12 11:29 AM
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My point is, Roadfood is much much more more than "Diners Drive Ins and Dives" I know that is the direction it's taken post website and I won't begin to explain why.
 
I just  can't picture Guy Fieri walking into Durgin Park or Joe's Stone Crab  or The Fort  or even an old school midwest cafe like Kaffe Stuga in Harris MN even though all of these places are classic roadfood restaurant.
 

Twinwillow
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Re:Why isn't Kenny & Ziggy's (Houston, TX) reviewed on Roadfood? - Mon, 04/2/12 1:10 PM
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Wanderingjew ~ Although I very much respect your valued opinion and most everything you post here, my personal opinion is that, high profile and relatively expensive restaurants such as Durgin Park and Joe's Stone Crab are not exactly Roadfood restaurants.
To me, they're more of the world class and world renown type of restaurants that do not fit my idea of the "roadfood" persona.
 
DDD does just that. They feature the smaller, out of the way hidden gems that only the "locals" are familiar with. 
 
To me, these are exactly the type of places that I seek out and truly fit the Roadfood image. 
<message edited by Twinwillow on Mon, 04/2/12 3:37 PM>

bethgrd
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Re:Why isn't Kenny & Ziggy's (Houston, TX) reviewed on Roadfood? - Mon, 04/2/12 1:57 PM
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MOSCA: I too don't usually watch DDD but saw the episode re this place yesterday and was BLOWN AWAY by how authentic and great the food looked. Really want to go there but won't gt to texas anytime soon. The chef was amazing!! Also saw an episode prior to that w Kid Rock and Detroit area smoked meats place that looked fabulous. Unfortunately i have started eating mostly vegetarian!  The kasha varnishkas at the deli place looked great.

joerogo
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Re:Why isn't Kenny & Ziggy's (Houston, TX) reviewed on Roadfood? - Mon, 04/2/12 2:25 PM
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Hey Tom,
 
The "Pointy Haired Guy" hasn't let me down yet.
 
I like that he gives you the recipes(they are available on the website also).  On Saturday I made osso bucco based on the recipe from Grandpa's.


Mosca
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Re:Why isn't Kenny & Ziggy's (Houston, TX) reviewed on Roadfood? - Mon, 04/2/12 2:29 PM
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bb, neither; it's not reviewed as a restaurant, and a search turns up a sole reference, deep inside a thread where is wasn't given as a go-there, but the o/p found it on her own and went (and reported favorably).
 
I think I understand what you're saying, wj. In a larger sense, though, I also think that anything that gives a traveler a worthwhile option has to fall on the plus side of the ledger, in the end.

Mosca
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Re:Why isn't Kenny & Ziggy's (Houston, TX) reviewed on Roadfood? - Mon, 04/2/12 2:31 PM
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Joe, YEAH. Folks, watch the clip and tell me that's not Roadfood, by any definition!
 
Money quote, @ 5:25 of the video: "This is lost food, and if no one perpetuates it it's gonna disappear forever."
<message edited by Mosca on Mon, 04/2/12 2:38 PM>

Twinwillow
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Re:Why isn't Kenny & Ziggy's (Houston, TX) reviewed on Roadfood? - Mon, 04/2/12 3:25 PM
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I request my last meal must be served by Kenny & Ziggy's.
And, must include Kasha Varnishkas!

Mosca
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Re:Why isn't Kenny & Ziggy's (Houston, TX) reviewed on Roadfood? - Mon, 04/2/12 3:30 PM
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Twinwillow, the recipe is on the DDD website. I don't know kasha all that well; is 13.5 cups of chicken stock the right amount for 2 1/4 boxes of kasha and 1lb of bowtie pasta? Or is it a bad conversion?

wanderingjew
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Re:Why isn't Kenny & Ziggy's (Houston, TX) reviewed on Roadfood? - Mon, 04/2/12 4:06 PM
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Twinwillow


Wanderingjew ~ Although I very much respect your valued opinion and most everything you post here, my personal opinion is that, high profile and relatively expensive restaurants such as Durgin Park and Joe's Stone Crab are not exactly Roadfood restaurants.
To me, they're more of the world class and world renown type of restaurants that do not fit my idea of the "roadfood" persona.

DDD does just that. They feature the smaller, out of the way hidden gems that only the "locals" are familiar with. 

To me, these are exactly the type of places that I seek out and truly fit the Roadfood image. 

 
I understand what you are saying but that would mean that since  at least 90% or more of the people that go to Katz's Deli in NYC are tourists  that its world reknowned, hi profile  and not Roadfood (you can even use the same analogy with Strouds or Arthur Bryants in KC or Primanti's in Pittsburgh. I'm just saying that DDD is only a very small composite of what I consider Roadfood (and I'm not going to back track into the "What is Roadfood" argument again) 
 
And, yeah, I do find the pointy haired one very annoying- that's probably why I just tune the show out.
 

Twinwillow
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Re:Why isn't Kenny & Ziggy's (Houston, TX) reviewed on Roadfood? - Mon, 04/2/12 4:24 PM
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Mosca, my friend, I can make kasha varnishkas in my sleep! But, because I live alone, I usually only use a cup of groats to make kasha varnishkas just for myself.
 
First off, buy a box of Wolff's (brand) kasha (buckwheat groats) in the large sized WHOLE groat and buy a box of farfalle (bow-tie pasta). Just follow the instructions on the box of Wolff's buckwheat groats. Very Important: What I do differently is, I sought of make it like a risotto. First, before I add the chicken stock, I saute chopped yellow onion and a little garlic in my lipid of preference. Grapeseed oil is my favorite for this dish. EVOO is too strong tasting. Although, if you have "light" olive oil, you can use it. Then I add the groats as directed on the box. Like risotto, I "toast" the groats by stirring them in the hot pan along with the onions and garlic for a few minutes adding kosher salt and (white) pepper to taste. Then, I add the chicken stock and already boiled varnishkas (bow-tie pasta) to the pot and bring to a boil while stirring and then cover and simmer on a low flame according to the instructions on the box.
They're usually fluffy and fully cooked in less than 15 minutes.
 
 
<message edited by Twinwillow on Mon, 04/2/12 4:47 PM>

Twinwillow
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Re:Why isn't Kenny & Ziggy's (Houston, TX) reviewed on Roadfood? - Mon, 04/2/12 4:30 PM
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Wanderingjew - We seem to have a clash of opinions. I think both of us have made some valid points and I will leave it at that. 

Mosca
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Re:Why isn't Kenny & Ziggy's (Houston, TX) reviewed on Roadfood? - Mon, 04/2/12 5:20 PM
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Thanks, Twinwillow! How much chicken stock, and how soupy is it when done? Is it dry like halushki?

The Travelin Man
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Re:Why isn't Kenny & Ziggy's (Houston, TX) reviewed on Roadfood? - Mon, 04/2/12 5:30 PM
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I have been to Kenny and Ziggy's and found it to be better than average Jewish-style deli - and certainly the best available in the Houston area, if that is what you seek. It is not cheap, but, as you say, they do cure their own pastrami and corned beef, which is a rarity these days. It took me two tries to actually like the place, though. My first experience must have been on an off night, and I found the whole place entirely overpriced and forgettable. I was in the same area again the last time I was in Houston (a few years after my first visit), and I was lacking for options and figured I would give the place another shot. Still, for me, it took me being in Houston for two weeks of traveling to consider having Jewish-style deli in Houston.
 
As to why it is not reviewed....from what I can gather (a) the editorial staff is too small to hit every part of the country; (b) I suspect that they would have to be in Houston for a relatively extended period of time before they would consider eating Jewish-style deli, given all of the other choices that are far less available in their home-based area of the northeast - i.e. BBQ, Tex-Mex, etc; and (c) Houston is comparatively less traveled than other parts of the country by the editorial staff.
 
It is possible for users to submit a review, but I know I tend not to take those as seriously as I take editorial staff reviews (or reviews from the people I know and trust).  

Twinwillow
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Re:Why isn't Kenny & Ziggy's (Houston, TX) reviewed on Roadfood? - Mon, 04/2/12 5:45 PM
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Mosca, follow the preparation directions on the Wolff's box. It should be fluffy like a rice dish. Not,soupy!

Variations: 
http://www.nytimes.com/20...dining&oref=slogin   (My favorite). Watch the video!

http://www.google.com/sea...p;biw=1440&bih=821


<message edited by Twinwillow on Mon, 04/2/12 5:57 PM>

Mosca
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Re:Why isn't Kenny & Ziggy's (Houston, TX) reviewed on Roadfood? - Mon, 04/2/12 6:17 PM
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Thanks, Twinwillow; thanks, TTM! TTM, I did really more mean "discussed in the forums", as there are only a few staff who write the formal reviews. And,  I value your taste as consistent and well reasoned; that is exactly what I was looking for. Yeah, if you're going to Texas, you aren't really looking for NYC deli. OTOH, if it's good... Thanks, again!

Twinwillow
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Re:Why isn't Kenny & Ziggy's (Houston, TX) reviewed on Roadfood? - Mon, 04/2/12 6:26 PM
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Yes, I think people coming to Texas are not coming for Jewish deli food. They want, (and rightly so) BBQ!

wanderingjew
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Re:Why isn't Kenny & Ziggy's (Houston, TX) reviewed on Roadfood? - Mon, 04/2/12 6:34 PM
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Mosca


 Yeah, if you're going to Texas, you aren't really looking for NYC deli. OTOH, if it's good... Thanks, again!

You can barely find NYC deli in NYC anymore. 

Twinwillow
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Re:Why isn't Kenny & Ziggy's (Houston, TX) reviewed on Roadfood? - Mon, 04/2/12 7:07 PM
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Growing up in NYC, I can remember there being a deli in every neighborhood in all the 5 boroughs as well as Long Island!

MetroplexJim
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Re:Why isn't Kenny & Ziggy's (Houston, TX) reviewed on Roadfood? - Mon, 04/2/12 8:11 PM
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As Houston is a good-sized metro area (it recently passed Philly as the 5th. largest) there are plenty of fine vittles to be had there.  Another "local chain" I enjoy when visiting there is James Coney Island ( http://jamesconeyisland.com/index.php ).  I wish James' and Kenny & Ziggy's would travel up I-45 and open places in the Metroplex.

mr chips
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Re:Why isn't Kenny & Ziggy's (Houston, TX) reviewed on Roadfood? - Mon, 04/2/12 10:58 PM
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I find it curious that a jewish deli in Houston is not reviewed but one in portland is. I think TTM 's analysis is correct. And a lot of towns suffer because of their proximity to other more popular places. San Antonio used to have a lot fewer restaurant reviews than Austin and tucson always seems to have more reviews the the Phoenix area.
<message edited by mr chips on Wed, 04/4/12 2:20 AM>

acer2x
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Re:Why isn't Kenny & Ziggy's (Houston, TX) reviewed on Roadfood? - Mon, 04/2/12 11:58 PM
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I was there about 2 years ago. I was unimpressed with their corned beef and pastrami sandwiches;however, my friend had the stuffed cabbage(prokas) platter with kasha varnischkes and it was top rate. The corned beef and pastrami were machine sliced and just average to me and did not approach the hand sliced versions of Katz's or even Herschel's in Philly.

Twinwillow
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Re:Why isn't Kenny & Ziggy's (Houston, TX) reviewed on Roadfood? - Tue, 04/3/12 1:05 AM
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Corned beef and pastrami should only be sliced by hand!

The Travelin Man
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Re:Why isn't Kenny & Ziggy's (Houston, TX) reviewed on Roadfood? - Tue, 04/3/12 9:05 AM
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Like I said, it took me going back a second time to appreciate the quality of the corned beef. It doesn't taste at all like the mass-produced Hebrew National (or just National) brand stuff that you find at many places. Is it the best I've ever had? No. Is it the best in Houston? Probably.
 
mr chips - Houston is far too large an area to have such little representation in the "official" reviews. It just doesn't seem to be a town that the editorial staff visits often, whereas it does seem as though they get to Portland more frequently. I have taken to sourcing out BBQ spots in Texas from a local blogger who hasn't steered me wrong yet. All he does is BBQ, though, so if I want something else, I have to source that out from somewhere else.

joerogo
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Re:Why isn't Kenny & Ziggy's (Houston, TX) reviewed on Roadfood? - Tue, 04/3/12 9:10 AM
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Here is the top 10 for Pittsburgh:
 
1) Robert Wholey & Co. - Pittsburgh, PA (0 Miles) 
Must Eats: fish sandwich, Soup 2) Primanti Brothers - Pittsburgh, PA (0 Miles) 
Must Eats: double egg and pastrami sandwich, hot sausage, Baloney, Egg, and Cheese Sandwich, Roast Beef and Cheese 3) Sunseri Brothers - Pittsburgh, PA (0 Miles) 
Must Eats: Visionary bread, olives 4) DeLuca's - Pittsburgh, PA (0 Miles) 
Must Eats: chocolate chip hotcake sundae, "The Steel City", breakfast mixed grill, French Toast 5) Enrico Biscotti Co. - Pittsburgh, PA (0 Miles) 
Must Eats: biscotti, macaroons, focaccia, Italian White Bean Soup 6) Wiener World - Pittsburgh, PA (1 Miles) 
Must Eats: fish sandwich, hot dog 7) Fat Heads South Side Saloon - Pittsburgh, PA (1 Miles) 
Must Eats: Chicken Wings, South Side Slopes Headwich 8) Original Hot Dog Shop - Pittsburgh, PA (2 Miles) 
Must Eats: French fries, hot dog 9) Union Grill - Pittsburgh, PA (2 Miles) 
Must Eats: Turkey Devonshire, Pierogies 10) Prantl's Bakery - Pittsburgh, PA (3 Miles) 
Must Eats: Burnt Almond Torte, Roses in the Snow, Pepperoni Roll
 
 
Still a very powerful list of eateries mind you, but it doesn't even begin to show the breath of RF offerings in Pitt.
 
The Pointy Haired Guy is nauseating for the most part, but he is showing RF that is inspiring instead of long lived or popular.

MetroplexJim
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Re:Why isn't Kenny & Ziggy's (Houston, TX) reviewed on Roadfood? - Tue, 04/3/12 9:48 AM
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For those of you who like Middle-Eastern cuisine (I do not care for it), Houston is a "Mecca" for such.  This is due to the petroleum industry being centered there; the middle-eastern OPEC countries send their petroleum engineers and managers there for their "graduate education".  In fact, the only Saudi Arabian Cousulate outside Washington is located in Houston near the Galleria (and across the street from James' Coney Island, which is how I "discovered" James'). 

Twinwillow
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Re:Why isn't Kenny & Ziggy's (Houston, TX) reviewed on Roadfood? - Tue, 04/3/12 11:08 AM
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Jim, we have many more Middle Eastern restaurants (Mostly, Syrian and Lebanese) in Dallas than we have Jewish Deli's.
One thats very popular and my personal favorite is, Afrah.
We also have a large amount of Middle Eastern grocery stores as well.
 
Dallas is truly becoming an "international" city with very large populations of Vietnamese, Thai, and many other South East Asians. And, an unusually large Indian population. And of course, Mexican and Central American people. Especially, Guatemalans.
But, what we need in Dallas is more Italians and Greeks!
<message edited by Twinwillow on Tue, 04/3/12 12:31 PM>

1bbqboy
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Re:Why isn't Kenny & Ziggy's (Houston, TX) reviewed on Roadfood? - Tue, 04/3/12 11:17 AM
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Texas could just buy Greece and move the whole country
to somewhere in between  Dallas and Houston.
Make it a giant amusement park , better and bigger than the London Bridge in Arizona.
 

Twinwillow
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Re:Why isn't Kenny & Ziggy's (Houston, TX) reviewed on Roadfood? - Tue, 04/3/12 11:41 AM
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1bbqboy


Texas could just buy Greece and move the whole country
to somewhere in between  Dallas and Houston.
Make it a giant amusement park , better and bigger than the London Bridge in Arizona.


 


MetroplexJim
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Re:Why isn't Kenny & Ziggy's (Houston, TX) reviewed on Roadfood? - Tue, 04/3/12 12:03 PM
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1bbqboy


Texas could just buy Greece and move the whole country
to somewhere in between  Dallas and Houston.
Make it a giant amusement park , better and bigger than the London Bridge in Arizona.



Just be sure to build a "bullet-train" line paralleling I-45 just in case I need to get through it in a hurry!
 
And, while we're at it", move the Greek Isles to the Gulf.  That way we can drill on dry land!
 
(Actually, high speed rail connecting Dallas, Ft. Worth, Austin, San Antonio, & Houston is one of the few routes, along with DC - Baltimore - Philly - NYC - Boston, where rail can be faster than air and actually show a profit).

MetroplexJim
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Re:Why isn't Kenny & Ziggy's (Houston, TX) reviewed on Roadfood? - Tue, 04/3/12 12:16 PM
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Twinwillow


Jim, we have many more Middle Eastern restaurants (Mostly, Syrian and Lebanese) in Dallas than we have Jewish Deli's.
One thats very popular and my personal favorite is, Afrah.
We also have a large amount of Middle Eastern grocery stores as well.

Dallas is truly becoming an "international" city with very large populations of Vietnamese, Thai, and many other South East Asians. And, an unusually large Indian population. And of course, Mexican and Central American people. Especially, Guatemalans.
But, we need is more Italians and Greeks!


Two bad DeliNews too closed.  Aside from DeliNews (Preston & Campbell), any others to recommend.
 
Curiously enough the middle-eastern Mrs. Metro doesn't much care for her "native" cuisine.  I guess because her family has for several generations been educated in Britain and the U.S., the primary cuisine they have prepared even "at home" in Riyadh is Western Continental.

Twinwillow
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Re:Why isn't Kenny & Ziggy's (Houston, TX) reviewed on Roadfood? - Tue, 04/3/12 12:18 PM
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MetroplexJim


1bbqboy


Texas could just buy Greece and move the whole country
to somewhere in between  Dallas and Houston.
Make it a giant amusement park , better and bigger than the London Bridge in Arizona.



Just be sure to build a "bullet-train" line paralleling I-45 just in case I need to get through it in a hurry!

And, while we're at it", move the Greek Isles to the Gulf.  That way we can drill on dry land!

(Actually, high speed rail connecting Dallas, Ft. Worth, Austin, San Antonio, & Houston is one of the few routes, along with DC - Baltimore - Philly - NYC - Boston, where rail can be faster than air and actually show a profit).

 
I'm 100% for the high speed rail system between the Texas cities you've mentioned but, thanks to Texas politics it will never be built! At least, not in our life time.

Twinwillow
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Re:Why isn't Kenny & Ziggy's (Houston, TX) reviewed on Roadfood? - Tue, 04/3/12 12:25 PM
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MetroplexJim


Twinwillow


Jim, we have many more Middle Eastern restaurants (Mostly, Syrian and Lebanese) in Dallas than we have Jewish Deli's.
One thats very popular and my personal favorite is, Afrah.
We also have a large amount of Middle Eastern grocery stores as well.

Dallas is truly becoming an "international" city with very large populations of Vietnamese, Thai, and many other South East Asians. And, an unusually large Indian population. And of course, Mexican and Central American people. Especially, Guatemalans.
But, we need is more Italians and Greeks!


Two bad DeliNews too closed.  Aside from DeliNews (Preston & Campbell), any others to recommend.

Curiously enough the middle-eastern Mrs. Metro doesn't much care for her "native" cuisine.  I guess because her family has for several generations been educated in Britain and the U.S., the primary cuisine they have prepared even "at home" in Riyadh is Western Continental.

 
Sorry Jim. the original Deli-News at Preston and Campbell is still "it" in Dallas. Deli-News Too morphed into a separate entity known as, Ed's Deli. It (deservedly) closed after a couple of years. Gio's Deli has taken the former Ed's Deli space but it's not even close to the quality or "deli feeling" of the (original) Deli-News at Preston & Campbell.
<message edited by Twinwillow on Tue, 04/3/12 12:33 PM>

Bossa Nova
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Re:Why isn't Kenny & Ziggy's (Houston, TX) reviewed on Roadfood? - Sat, 04/7/12 5:32 PM
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Kenny & Ziggy's is a very good deli.  I've been 4 or 5 times (my sister lives in Houston) and enjoyed it every time.  It is better than many (but not all) of the deli's here in NJ.