I have long been in love with CITYCENTRE, so when they asked MsIndependent to host a holiday themed culinary crawl as part of a day of holiday activities in the area; I jumped at the opportunity faster than you could say jiggle bells! Five restaurants and eateries signed on to host a hungry group of men and women, foodies and food bloggers, to and afternoon of food, cocktails, and desserts.
*Some of the pics below are from bloggers that attended the crawl. These images are linked back to their blog well applicable.*
Bowl & Barrel is a modern American tavern featuring house-made specialties and boutique bowling. It's not the typical fluorescent lighting, neon carpet, and greasy food you might come to expect when bowling. This is a more modern atmosphere with trendy rustic and industrial finishes, and elegant lighting with sleek leather benches. The full-service restaurant offers an impressive array of reimagined gourmet classics, and an extensive drink menu.
Handcut Fries with Mini Burgers
Cornish Hand Pies filled with ground beef and HP sauce.
Meatballs: Meatloaf with Tomato Jam, Pork and Beans, and Buffalo Chicken with blue cheese drizzle.
And to top off our delicious start to the crawl we also enjoyed mimosas.
OLIVE & VINE features a variety of over 35 different olive oils, balsamic vinegars, and specialty oils from all around the world. Guests are encouraged to sample everything in the store, explore exotic flavors, and expand all the culinary possibilities that may follow. What I love most about Olive and Vine is that it's owned by a husband and wife team, Wayde and Susan Burt. Their knowledge of oils is incredibly extensive and we were all ears as we listened to Wayde explain the differences in how the oils are processed and what makes them unique. Judging by all the ohh's and ahh's as everyone sampled the oils, OLIVE and VINE found some new fans that day!
We were able to sample hummus made with chili pepper oil which was divine, and everyone left with their own personal bottle of oil and balsamic vinaigrette!
Seasons 52 is a grill and wine bar that highlights sensational flavors with its seasonally-inspired menu and award-winning international wine list. This stop on our tour was a highlight on the crawl, and an impressive showing of just how imaginative Seasons 52's menu truly is.
Warm Beet Salad: California Golden Beets with Laura Chenel goat cheese, toasted pistachios, and micro basil, finished with chive oil and 15-year aged balsamic
Artisan Cheese Fondue: with cave-aged Gruyere, cheddar, and a basket of assorted breads
Cranberry & Sage Cocktail: Prairie Organic Gin, white cranberry juice, fresh cranberries, lime, and a candied sage leaf
Wine: Las Rocas (Garnacha), Calatayud, Spain
Flatbreads: Braised Short Rib & Aged Cheddar Flatbread (Seasonal- Winter): with picked red onion & beet confetti, horseradish sour cream, and micro cilantro. The second flatbread ( not pictured here) is the Roasted Roma Tomato Flatbread: with fresh mozzarella, and basil chiffonade.
Duck Wing “Lollipops”: with Korean “gochujang” red chili glaze
Caramelized Bosc Pear & Burrata Board: with prosciutto, arugula, 15-year aged balsamic, and fresh honeycomb.
For dessert we had the Pumpkin Pie mini indulgence. Other bit size flavors includes the Chocolate Ganache Brownie, Key Lime Pie, Pecan Pie, Belgian Chocolate S'more, Chocolate Peanut Butter Torte, Raspberry Chocolate Chip Cannoli, and the Carrot Cake with Cinnamon Honey.
Straits Restaurant offers a menu that includes four main Singaporean cuisine groups: Malaysian/Indonesian, Chinese, Indian, and Nonya, and a few others. The sleek dining area and peaceful patio make this restaurants a feast for your eyes as well as your mouth.
Southeast Asian Trio Sampler: Beef Satay, Crispy chicken on bed of rice & a Honey Walnut Prawn with micro greens.
Chef Sean came out and introduced his creations as we snapped pics and live streamed the experience. Food this beautiful deserves an audience.
Milano bar features an intimate speakeasy atmosphere that is classy, dapper, and the perfect backdrop for some of the most talented mixologists in Houston. Ever since our last Culinary Crawl through CITYCENTRE I have become a diehard fan of the gentleman that craft these fantastically unique elixirs, all with a side of kindness and cool.
Meet Brandon- the man of the hour. When our group of 18 predominately women swarm into the bar, Brandon met us with a smile, talked us through his oh so cool process of crafting our drinks, and took requests. We had our choice of either vodka or whiskey with which to make our spirited holiday cocktails, and with those spirits we capped off our crawl with plenty of good cheer.
If you have never had a cloud of cinnamon smoke swirl around a glass of cognac, please live your life to fullest and make that happen asap.
Each of our culinary crawlers were given a treat bag to hold any of the giveaways or menus the restaurants might offer, along with a social media cheat sheet complete with restaurant handles and hashtags. Check out our reviews from Houston food bloggers that joined us on the crawl, and see more pics from the tour when you search #GlistenDineAround on social media.
We had a wonderful time and hope to bring you many more tasty tours of the city in 2017.