George Bernard Shaw, in his four-act dramatic play, “Man and Superman,” writes “There is no love sincerer than the love of food.”
I think it goes without saying that I really love food.
Last weekend, some gal pals and I decided to head to Houston for Houston Restaurant Week. Week is a bit of a misnomer as the “week” stretches from Aug. 1 through Sept. 7.
Founded in 2003, the event is a fundraiser for the Houston Food Bank with the equivalent of three meals donated for every brunch, lunch and dinner purchased from the special menus at the participating restaurants. Great food for a great cause is a win-win in my book.
The event website has all the participating restaurants and links to their menus. Restaurants offer fixed price menus that include three-course brunches and lunches for $20 per person and four-course dinners, some for $35 and others for $45 per person. I absolutely love it because it presents an opportunity to try new places that I might not ordinarily go to, and I find that they feature their signature dishes on the restaurant week menu.
We decided to try the Highland Village Gauchos Do Sul, a traditional Brazilian style steakhouse. It was absolutely fabulous. This was my very first trip to a Brazilian steakhouse but it certainly won’t be my last. The food and preparation hearken back to the gauchos, the cowboys of South America, who cooked their meat “churrasco” style, which means it is slow-roasted over an open flame. This style of cooking lent itself to their long days of working in the field.
Once seated I could fully appreciate the hip blend of the modern with a splash of traditional inside the restaurant. We sampled succulent steak, sweet shrimp, tender lamb and so much more.
The food just kept coming and coming, each dish more delectable than the last.
As the food, laughter and libations flowed I became fully aware of how important it is to share your sincere loves with those who you sincerely love, especially after the nightmarish slog the last few months have been.
One of my favorite parts of the meal was the grilled pineapple, which was as delicious as it was unexpected. The juicy sweetness of the rich yellow flesh was made even more so when caramelized over the grill and dusted with cinnamon and sugar. I couldn’t wait to get home, fire up the grill and try it out for myself.
I will admit there is a bit of a learning curve when grilling pineapple, but the practice that finally resulted in perfection was well worth it.
If you get the chance to venture to Houston during restaurant week, know that everywhere we went observed social distancing and enhanced cleaning.
If that isn’t your speed, they are also offering restaurant week selections for pick up and delivery.
If you can’t make it to Houston right now, please keep in mind that our food banks need support more now than ever.
As we all continue to navigate these challenging times, please also continue to support restaurants when you can.
As I wrote this I was reminded of the sage words of composer Joss Whedon: “Humor keeps us alive. Humor and food. Don’t forget food. You can go a week without laughing.”