UPDATE: CLOSED EARLY 2008
To suggest that this restaurant exudes testosterone is an understatement — start with the name, the dark wood interior, and the bar that seems to have usurped The Remington (f/k/a/ Ritz Carlton) as the place to hang for the over sixty guy looking for some action. (And there’s some to be had judging by the young women we observed.) If J. Howard Marshall and Anna Nicole decided to return to earth for another meal, they’d likely pick Bob’s.
Bob’s has been a Dallas institution for years. In Houston, it has taken over the old Tony’s location on Post Oak. Other than the front door being in the same place, you wouldn’t recognize the restaurant from the Tony’s days. Gone are the rich velvety tones, replaced by the aforementioned dark wood and muted colors. The bar features prominently when you walk in the door; the ubiquitous televisions and attractive bartenders continue the guy theme.
We’d heard that the service could be shaky, but our reservation was honored right on time, and everyone from the waitress, sommelier, and busguys was very attentive. We were seated in a very comfortable booth with a great view for people watching. And for those who have trouble seeing, the rooms are well lit. Don’t expect the sexy warmth of Flemings or Capital Grille; this place feels more like a country club grill room. The very large jar of pickled red peppers and cucumbers on each table is an interesting, somewhat odd touch that one can only assume has been a Bob’s tradition for many years.
The menu is standard steakhouse fare. The calamari was disappointing, as were the two salads that we tried — tomato, red onion, and blue cheese and a mixed greens salad with a creamy blue cheese dressing. The main culprit — blue cheese crumbles that rivaled those you’d find in bulk at Costco. The restaurant redeemed itself with the steaks and sides. We tried the NY strip and the filet — both were great, as good as we can recall at any steakhouse in Houston. A nice touch is that every entrée comes with a potato dish — either baked, (s)mashed, or pan fried with onions and green peppercorn sauce. Although the latter is a signature item, the smashed potatoes were delicious, and the largest portion we’ve ever seen. The creamed spinach was as good as most, as were the onion rings. And we can’t fail but mention perhaps the coup de grace in continuing the men’s club theme–the signature whole glazed carrot that adorns every entrée. The men at the table felt weird eating it–need we say more? Bigger sometimes is better, so it’s a good thing there were four of us as the warm brownie with peanut butter ice cream was definitely a dessert to be shared, and share we did with spoons a flying.
It doesn’t seem this town can have too many steakhouses and, judging by the packed dining room, Bob’s will likely be around for awhile, particularly with the aging of the baby boomers.
1801 Post Oak Boulevard
We headed to Galveston on a recent weekend for Galveston Uncorked. With souvenir wine glasses in hand, we strolled through the Strand area, stopping at various retail establishments for wine tastings. A fun event, even though the quality of the wine was less than stellar. We did have occasion to eat at a few places, the latter two of which were very good suggestions from Janet, our Galveston Editor —
Benno’s — lunched at this very casual, Seawall seafood joint where you order at the counter various fried and Cajun style seafood offerings at reasonable prices; we enjoyed the fried seafood platter (shrimp, oysters, fish, and crab balls) and the fried stuffed shrimp (mini missiles of crab stuffing and shrimp); the hush puppies were a particularly good version; absolutely no dress code
Luigi’s — dined at this bustling, upscale (at least for Galveston) Italian restaurant on the Strand; the calamari was chewy, but we very much enjoyed our entrees — mushroom lasagna (gooey and rich, in a bechamel sauce, loaded with various varieties of mushrooms) and grilled shrimp and scallops served on a bed of sautéed spinach; service was a little shaky — we waited at the door for awhile before one of 3 hostesses appeared, and our waiter felt the need to brag to us about selling to another table the bottle of wine he had tried to convince us to buy (did we care? and, if the half carafe of Chianti that he recommended is any indication of his wine expertise, we’re glad we passed); toward the end of the evening, the singing owner let loose with a couple booming operatic refrains
Mosquito Cafe — had breakfast at this casual cafe on 14th street; we had to stand in line awhile, but it was worth it; while we waited for our food, we munched on a delicious sundried tomato and blue cheese scone; then moved on to generous servings of a standard breakfast (scrambled eggs and bacon) and a vegetable omelet (roasted tomatos and creamed spinach); the owner was particularly friendly and accommodating, stopping by each table to make sure everything was o’kay