Welcome to Houston Super Bowl Travelers. You are now in a city where one out of four people are born outside this country. A recent Vogue article attempted to give you some direction on our global food scene, however, it is laughably bad. Literally, every Houstonian I have showed the article to has laughed out loud at their list. Leading their list is Ninfa's, which Houstonians love, but it is as local as any restaurant here; it is part of the fabric of Houston's food scene and hardly counts as global. If you are looking some truly global eats to try while you are in town, then you have come to the right place. In no particular order, here are our top six choices:
Cuy (Guinea Pig) at Andes Cafe.
There are only two places in the United States where you can try the national dish of Peru and Ecuador, Cuy (roasted guinea pig); Houston is one of them. If you don't want to go quite so exciting, you can try the Hornado (one of our favorites!) which is sautéd pork with a side of stuffed mashed potato. They also have a number of sides such as a flayed, cheese-topped plantain, and roasted corn. You can read our complete article here.
Anything with Noodles at the Uyghur Bistro
Uyghur (pronounced WEE-gur) people are Turkic peoples who live in western China. The Uyghur Bistro in Houston is a family run business that offers authentic Uyghur food. This food is a true east-meets-west fusion of central Asian and Chinese. Try anything with noodles and you can't go wrong. They have a famous chef who makes more than 20 hand pulled noodle dishes. You can read our full article here (so good we had to do two): Part 1 and Part 2.
The Afghan Village serves a variety of Afghan food. If you have never had food from this country, it is something close to Indian, though noticeably less spicy, but with many hints from central Asia. Quabuli Palau and Chicken Karhai are two of the dishes you must try. The former is the national dish which is a test of readiness given to soon to be brides. Also try the Bourane Bajan (Eggplant and Yoghurt dip) or Mantoo (Afghan dumplings) as a starter. One of the noticeable features about the Afghan Village is that we would list it among Houston's most hospitable restaurants. The restaurant is complete with a Dastarkhan (a traditional raised flooring where you sit to eat) which is available by reservation. One cultural tip: in Afghani culture the left hand is dirty, so try to keep that out of the food. You can read our full article here.
Lucy's Ethiopian Restaurant
Lucy's Ethiopian Restaurant also ranks among Houston's most hospitable restaurants. In spite of the high praise we have for the food, and the excellent cultural experience you will have there, the best thing about Lucy's is Suzani, who is as gracious and hospitable as she is interesting to talk to. If you have a moment, ask her about her story. Ethiopian food is eaten with Injera, a spongy flat bread that is used to grab the meat and veggies, and sop up the sauces. If you go at the right time, you can witness them roasting and pouring traditional Ethiopian coffee.
You can read our full article here.
Dandanah Cafe and Grill
This Egyptian restaurant is a full on Egyptian cultural experience. It is naturally open till super late which is a big part of the late night culture in Egypt. They have a selection of broad Arab dishes but include a number of local specialties. If you are looking to try some Egyptian street food, go for the Hawawshi, a meat filled flat bread, or Koshari, a bowl of noodles, lentils, chickpeas, and tomato garnish. For those interested in trying something more off the map, don't worry, they can hook you up with a fried brain sandwich. The must try of must tries is the Fatir. Even if you can't make dinner here, stop by for this fantastic desert (try the chocolate one).
Read the full article here.
La Guitarra Con Sazón
Peru should be on your bucket list if only to try their food. It is one of the most biodiverse countries in the world and is home to a number of different fusion foods with hints from China, the Caribbean, Spain, and local culture. La Guitarra Con Sazón offers a half dozen ceviches, but the best one in our opinion is ceviche nativo which includes shrimp, avocado, and mango. Lomo Saltado (stir fry beef) and their stir fried rice represent their Mandarin Caribbean fusion. If you are looking for something more exotic, try aticuchos de corazon (grilled beef heart). Wash your meal down with Chicha Morada, a sweet drink made from purple corn. Read our full article here.
Thats not all!
This is just our short list. There are dozen's of other great options that are definitely on our list of regular hot spots. If you want to read more about those, just check out our website and follow us on facebook.
Also while you are here, Houston is home to every major world religion. Check out some of our interesting places of worship.