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Can you translate?

I'm seeing: a turtle, a preacher, sinning cream, music, and large.

don't apply for translator at the UN. a marinated pork sandwich, no sour cream with and large drink. the horchata varies but i'd say it has milk, cinnamon, vanilla, etc.

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Ninfa Laurenzo and her husband had a tortilla factory in East End. Her husband died suddenly in 1969, and the tortilla factory wasn't doing well, so she closed it and started the restaurant that becam

Speaking of Taco Bell...I lived in Atlanta during the '90s and the best Mexican restaurant there during that time was...Taco Bell.    Yeah...the others there were that bad.

Angus fajitas for two at La Mexicana are simply amazing.

brains?? :unsure: i don't think barbacoa is suppose to have any brains in it at all.....

Barbacoa's generally cheek, face, and head meat from cattle. Brains are "sesos". The true breakfast of champions is sesos y lengua (brains and tongue). :P

Laredo Taqueria (Washington @ Snover, or the other locations at Fulton @ Patton and on Cavalcade just west of Fulton) serves really good barbacoa - actually, just about everything they serve is good. I'm particularly fond of the spicy fajitas - they're already plenty spicy, but add a dollop of the incendiary salsa verde and your sinuses will clear very quickly. The tacos are cheap, and they really pack the hungry diners in at lunchtime - there's usually a line at the counter you order and receive your food at that's almost out the door.

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This is a little off topic, but the best cheap but delicious food is at Dodo's chicken. It's a columbian restaurant on richmond near the beltway. People come from all over the city to eat the roasted chicken, beans and rice, and arepas. It looks like a little hole in the wall, but TRUST ME it's awesome!!! The family that runs it is so nice, and the name comes from a nickname from one of their children. (Called the father DoDo) I prefer this place to Americas(which is fabulous). You get a wing and breast + 2 or 3 sides and a drink for under 7 bucks. The columbian restaurant next door is pretty good too, but I can't remember the name. I live in Canada now, so I haven't been for a few years. My husband goes back whenever he's in Houston on business. BTW I am a white attractive female and I have gone here by myself, and it's always busy no matter what time of day it is.

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There used to be Fandango's. It had really great fajitas and tortillas. Too bad its gone now. :(

Ah, Fandango's, home of the perpetual half-off-fajitas-for-two coupon every week in the newspaper (or maybe it was buy one dinner, get one free - effectively the same thing). I was a poor college student when Fandango's opened, and my girlfriend and I ate quite a few meals there on the strength of that coupon. I've had better fajitas, but you sure couldn't argue with the price.

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Ah, Fandango's, home of the perpetual half-off-fajitas-for-two coupon every week in the newspaper (or maybe it was buy one dinner, get one free - effectively the same thing). I was a poor college student when Fandango's opened, and my girlfriend and I ate quite a few meals there on the strength of that coupon. I've had better fajitas, but you sure couldn't argue with the price.

I liked the food and the price was good too.

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I go to the Escalante's Highland Village OFTEN (probably tooooo often haha)...and actually like Blanco's Taco + Tequila quite a bit (although the queso is not your standard queso as it's more creamy like a cheese soup almost)...but cannot wait for the new Ninfa's to open at BLVD Place! (and Los Tios is opening a block away in the Randall's Plaza on San Felipe...

I will finally have quite a few mexican options walking distance to my condo and work!!!!! yahOOooOoOoo

 

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20 hours ago, gene said:

I go to the Escalante's Highland Village OFTEN (probably tooooo often haha)...and actually like Blanco's Taco + Tequila quite a bit (although the queso is not your standard queso as it's more creamy like a cheese soup almost)...but cannot wait for the new Ninfa's to open at BLVD Place! (and Los Tios is opening a block away in the Randall's Plaza on San Felipe...

I will finally have quite a few mexican options walking distance to my condo and work!!!!! yahOOooOoOoo

 

I wouldn't hold out much hope for the Ninfa's.  Every one I've been to has been sub-par.  I haven't been to the one on Navigation, though.

 

Is Los Tios going into the space at the end where Ciao Bello was?

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1 hour ago, august948 said:

I wouldn't hold out much hope for the Ninfa's.  Every one I've been to has been sub-par.  I haven't been to the one on Navigation, though.

 

Is Los Tios going into the space at the end where Ciao Bello was?

 

YES! Exactly! Apparently the Adair Family owns the chain now and when the space close to Adair Kitchen opened up they jumped at the chance to put Los Tios there! 

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On 3/5/2019 at 11:28 AM, august948 said:

I wouldn't hold out much hope for the Ninfa's.  Every one I've been to has been sub-par.  I haven't been to the one on Navigation, though.

 

Is Los Tios going into the space at the end where Ciao Bello was?

 

The Ninfa's on Navigation is more for the experience than the food (kinda like Joe T. Garcia's in Fort Worth), tbh, because the El Tiempo next door has far better food. Not to say the food at Ninfa's on Navigation is bad (and it's quite a bit better than Joe T's), it's just there is so much better Mexican food, even from Ninfa's own family. And the Ninfa's chain is not affiliated with the Navigation location or the Laurenzo family at all any more, hasn't been for a long time. Some of them can be fairly passable, the one on Memorial at Dairy Ashford is okay (though I prefer Los Tios at Memorial and Kirkwood), but I went into one Ninfa's down on the Gulf Freeway and Bay Area about 10 years ago, ordered enchiladas suizas, and got some fluorescent green translucent sauce that was obviously right out of a can. It was worse than public school cafeteria food.

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I didn't realize El Tiempo was associated with Ninfa's in any way until I noticed the giant portrait of a lady named "Ninfa" in El Tiempo.  What is the history of the restaurants?  I'm sure someone here knows

 

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Ninfa Laurenzo and her husband had a tortilla factory in East End. Her husband died suddenly in 1969, and the tortilla factory wasn't doing well, so she closed it and started the restaurant that became Ninfa's on Navigation. She introduced fajitas in 1973, and is credited by some with popularizing them in Texas, leading to their national popularity. Ninfa's expanded to several locations in the Houston area, and then other parts of Texas, through the 80s. The business went bankrupt in the late 90s, and she sold off the name which was used to open franchises, though she kept the ownership of and right to the name of Ninfa's on Navigation. In 1998 her son Roland opened the first El Tiempo on Richmond. A second Laurenzo restaurant with pretty much the same food as El Tiempo opened on Main Street in downtown in 1999, but it was called Tres Caballeros Cantina instead. I'm not sure when it closed, probably sometime around when the light rail construction curtailed the initial Downtwon revitalization that had started in the late 90s. I think the second location specifically named El Tiempo opened sometime in 2000, on the south side of I-10 outside of 610, but had to close due to I-10 widening.  Mama Ninfa died in 2001. New El Tiempos have been popping up ever since. Apparently they also own Tony Mandola's Gulf Coast Kitchen now?

Edited by Reefmonkey
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As mentioned, the Ninfa's on Navigation is not affiliated with or remotely similar to any of the other Ninfa's.  I think it is pretty fantastic and better than El Tiempo at a lot of things.  I think El Tiempo does great fajitas and that is about it.  El Real does the best cheese enchiladas in the city.  Los Tios does solid ones as well.  El Tiempo does the best fajitas (with Lupe pretty solid up there as well).  Irma's does the best Mole.

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4 minutes ago, Reefmonkey said:

Ninfa Laurenzo and her husband had a tortilla factory in East End. Her husband died suddenly in 1969, and the tortilla factory wasn't doing well, so she closed it and started the restaurant that became Ninfa's on Navigation. She introduced fajitas in 1973, and is credited by some with popularizing them in Texas, leading to their national popularity. Ninfa's expanded to several locations in the Houston area, and then other parts of Texas, through the 80s. The business went bankrupt in the late 90s, and she sold off the name which was used to open franchises, though she kept the ownership of and right to the name of Ninfa's on Navigation. In 1998 her son Roland opened the first El Tiempo on Richmond. A second Laurenzo restaurant with pretty much the same food as El Tiempo opened on Main Street in downtown in 1999. I'm not sure when it closed. I think the second location specifically named El Tiempo opened sometime in 2000, on the south side of I-10 outside of 610, but had to close due to I-10 widening.  Mama Ninfa died in 2001. New El Tiempos have been popping up ever since. Apparently they also own Tony Mandola's Gulf Coast Kitchen now?

https://www.tonymandolas.com/our-story/

 

Quote

Ninfa Laurenzo and Grace Mandola
Phyllis Mandola is the daughter of Mama Ninfa, a beloved Houston restaurateur. On the opening day of her famous restaurant, Ninfa placed an apron on Tony and sent him to the kitchen. He prepared the first order of tacos al carbon and Phyllis served it to the very first customer. Tony’s mother, Grace Mandola, was a formidable cook in her own right who cherished sharing her favorite recipes with the family. Both Ninfa and Grace left a legacy of hard work, dedication, and creativity in the kitchen.

This rich history combined with the couple’s love of Cajun culture and cuisine was the foundation for Tony Mandola’s Blue Oyster Bar. The restaurant features fried seafood, gumbo, shrimp étouffées and other Cajun specialties. The couple later opened Tony Mandola’s Gulf Coast Kitchen in Houston’s River Oaks Center, serving as a more sophisticated extension of the Blue Oyster Bar.

 

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5 minutes ago, kbates2 said:

As mentioned, the Ninfa's on Navigation is not affiliated with or remotely similar to any of the other Ninfa's.  I think it is pretty fantastic and better than El Tiempo at a lot of things.  I think El Tiempo does great fajitas and that is about it.  El Real does the best cheese enchiladas in the city.  Los Tios does solid ones as well.  El Tiempo does the best fajitas (with Lupe pretty solid up there as well).  Irma's does the best Mole.

 

Now that you mention it, the fajitas really are the standout at El Tiempo and pretty much all I get. I used to also like their crab enchilada, but haven't ordered it in forever. For some reason I also want to think that it used to have snapper as well as crab in it. And I like El Tiempo's frozen margaritas with sangria, but I think Ninfa on Navigation's margaritas on the rocks are better than El Tiempos' rocks. And agree on El Real and Los Tios enchiladas. I think Sylvia's does a good job too. Haven't tried Irma's, always looking for a good mole.

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1 hour ago, Reefmonkey said:

 

The Ninfa's on Navigation is more for the experience than the food (kinda like Joe T. Garcia's in Fort Worth), tbh, because the El Tiempo next door has far better food. Not to say the food at Ninfa's on Navigation is bad (and it's quite a bit better than Joe T's), it's just there is so much better Mexican food, even from Ninfa's own family. And the Ninfa's chain is not affiliated with the Navigation location or the Laurenzo family at all any more, hasn't been for a long time. Some of them can be fairly passable, the one on Memorial at Dairy Ashford is okay (though I prefer Los Tios at Memorial and Kirkwood), but I went into one Ninfa's down on the Gulf Freeway and Bay Area about 10 years ago, ordered enchiladas suizas, and got some fluorescent green translucent sauce that was obviously right out of a can. It was worse than public school cafeteria food.

 

Now that you mention Memorial at Dairy Ashford, our favorite there is La Hacienda.

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18 minutes ago, Reefmonkey said:

 

Now that you mention it, the fajitas really are the standout at El Tiempo and pretty much all I get. I used to also like their crab enchilada, but haven't ordered it in forever. For some reason I also want to think that it used to have snapper as well as crab in it. And I like El Tiempo's frozen margaritas with sangria, but I think Ninfa on Navigation's margaritas on the rocks are better than El Tiempos' rocks. And agree on El Real and Los Tios enchiladas. I think Sylvia's does a good job too. Haven't tried Irma's, always looking for a good mole.

 

Sylvia's does do a really great job, I don't go enough but her enchiladas are great pretty much across the board.

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12 minutes ago, august948 said:

 

Now that you mention Memorial at Dairy Ashford, our favorite there is La Hacienda.

 

There are people in our neighborhood who rave about that place. We went once when we hadn't been in the neighborhood all that long. I don't know if we went on an off night, or ordered the wrong things, but never went back. That was 12 years ago, so maybe its better now. One place I really like, though its more interior Mexican than Tex Mex, is Las Ventanas at Memorial and Highway 6. Good food and the best ambiance, a beautiful patio. I think they're owned by the same people who used to own Las Alamedas.

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9 minutes ago, Reefmonkey said:

 

There are people in our neighborhood who rave about that place. We went once when we hadn't been in the neighborhood all that long. I don't know if we went on an off night, or ordered the wrong things, but never went back. That was 12 years ago, so maybe its better now. One place I really like, though its more interior Mexican than Tex Mex, is Las Ventanas at Memorial and Highway 6. Good food and the best ambiance, a beautiful patio. I think they're owned by the same people who used to own Las Alamedas.

 

I'll have to give Las Ventanas a try.  Is it in that enclave of restaurants at the corner of hwy 6 and I10?

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On 3/19/2019 at 10:50 AM, august948 said:

 

I'll have to give Las Ventanas a try.  Is it in that enclave of restaurants at the corner of hwy 6 and I10?

 

You should. My wife and I went there once. They had the greatest waiter ANYWHERE. The place was packed, absolutely packed, and there was exactly and totally one waiter. Yes, one waiter. And that's all they needed. This guy was awesome. No one, and I mean no one, was dissatisfied. He didn't seem to move at any kind of lightning speed. Yet he had time to chat with us for a moment, our drinks were always filled, our plates were cleared promptly and we didn't have to wait for a check. Utterly amazing.

 

Oh yeah, LOL!, the food was outstanding, too. I had the snapper veracruz and it was awesome. I forgot what my wife had, but I do remember she loved it. 

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On 3/19/2019 at 10:31 AM, kbates2 said:

 

Sylvia's does do a really great job, I don't go enough but her enchiladas are great pretty much across the board.

 

Throughout my 53 year life, I'd guesstimate I've eaten at Whataburger perhaps 300 times. I've eaten at Sylvia's perhaps 150 times, and Whataburger had a good 25 year head start on them. We started going there not too long after her original restaurant opened in 1998. And we followed her when that restaurant moved to Westheimer at Dairy Ashford. One year I know we ate there an average of at least twice a month.  We went there so often that they just stopped asking what we wanted to drink and just brought it when we walked in the door. 

 

I've had most of her enchiladas and oddly enough, the only one I didn't like was the basic, run of the mill cheese enchilada. LOL! Usually that's what I order to test a Mexican restaurant the first time I go. I figure if you can't make a basic cheese enchilada., you can't make anything else. My favorite Sylvia's enchiladas are the Hidalgo with red sauce, the El Paso, the Mexico City and the Morelia. When I go for lunch though, I get the carne gusiada. It's the best I've ever had, and I've had lots of carne guisada. Theire rice used to be the best I'd ever had too. But  unfortunately they've changed the type of rice they used, going to a shorter grain and it's just not as good.

 

Two or so years ago, Sylvia closed her Westheimer restaurant. We've been to the Eldridge one several times, but not nearly as much as before. Perhaps a dozen times in two years. The Eldridge one is a little far. Oh well.

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1 hour ago, Firebird65 said:

 

Throughout my 53 year life, I'd guesstimate I've eaten at Whataburger perhaps 300 times. I've eaten at Sylvia's perhaps 150 times, and Whataburger had a good 25 year head start on them. We started going there not too long after her original restaurant opened in 1998. And we followed her when that restaurant moved to Westheimer at Dairy Ashford. One year I know we ate there an average of at least twice a month.  We went there so often that they just stopped asking what we wanted to drink and just brought it when we walked in the door. 

 

I've had most of her enchiladas and oddly enough, the only one I didn't like was the basic, run of the mill cheese enchilada. LOL! Usually that's what I order to test a Mexican restaurant the first time I go. I figure if you can't make a basic cheese enchilada., you can't make anything else. My favorite Sylvia's enchiladas are the Hidalgo with red sauce, the El Paso, the Mexico City and the Morelia. When I go for lunch though, I get the carne gusiada. It's the best I've ever had, and I've had lots of carne guisada. Theire rice used to be the best I'd ever had too. But  unfortunately they've changed the type of rice they used, going to a shorter grain and it's just not as good.

 

Two or so years ago, Sylvia closed her Westheimer restaurant. We've been to the Eldridge one several times, but not nearly as much as before. Perhaps a dozen times in two years. The Eldridge one is a little far. Oh well.

 

Speaking of Sylvia's, right next to it on Eldridge is Poblano's.  They're not too bad, either.

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On 3/2/2019 at 6:55 PM, ekdrm2d1 said:

I’ve been switching from Molina’s in Bellaire and Escalates in Meyerland.  Molina’s carries mole sauce which isn’t offered at your typical Tex-Mex.

 

On a strawberry margarita kick. Escalates uses strawberry purée

I love Molina's and it's my go-to, only because I was raised near the one on Westheimer. Also the vinegar salsa is my love jones.

I have a hard time convincing others that it's good though.

 

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5 hours ago, corbs315 said:

I love Molina's and it's my go-to, only because I was raised near the one on Westheimer. Also the vinegar salsa is my love jones.

I have a hard time convincing others that it's good though.

 

 

It tastes like Taco Bell fire sauce and its awesome.

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1 hour ago, kbates2 said:

 

It tastes like Taco Bell fire sauce and its awesome.

 

Speaking of Taco Bell...I lived in Atlanta during the '90s and the best Mexican restaurant there during that time was...Taco Bell. 

 

Yeah...the others there were that bad.

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12 hours ago, august948 said:

 

Speaking of Taco Bell...I lived in Atlanta during the '90s and the best Mexican restaurant there during that time was...Taco Bell. 

 

Yeah...the others there were that bad.

 

That's more common than you'd think in parts of the country that aren't accustomed to having a plethora of very good Mexican restaurants to choose from. When I was in college, I had a classmate that had grown up on the East Coast, and her frame of reference for Mexican restaurants was Taco Bell, because that was pretty much all there was to choose from where she was from. She was pretty amazed by what was available in Houston when she got here, and that was 30+ years ago. It's only gotten better since then. 

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Cotija works pretty well - it's a crumbly hard white cheese.  Try the mole enchiladas at La Mexicana - they come with cotija.

 

 

Edited by mollusk
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You can still find me at https://www.blancotacostequila.com/locations/houston-tx/ for happy hour many weeknights ;) i walk over after i get home from work....

amazing and cool bartenders (and this is coming from someone that doesn't drink haha! they do have this amazing non-alcoholic watermelon drink i get alot ) and great service and love the food as it's quite different from the usual tex-mex. They have a great cheese enchilada platter on their regular menu that is only 11.00 

 

 

Edited by gene
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