March 29th, 2010
The Week That Was 3.28.10
You might look below and think to yourself “The Loop Scoop was slacking last week.” Rest assured, the last thing we were doing was slacking. We have a big week ahead of us because of all the work we put in last week. That’s what we’re telling ourselves anyway. As we are prone to look forward to the Easter holiday and everything that’s in store, let’s take a second to remember The Week That Was. Oh, so far we’ve come…
Second Star to the Left and Straight on to Morning (Paul)
One of the simple pleasures in my life is rooting for the underdog. Whether it’s a band that my hipster heart thinks isn’t getting enough airtime (let’s be honest, if it were getting airtime then I would call them a sell-out) or in this case the local brewery that could. Southern Star Brewery has been getting a good deal of pub lately. Not only that, their product is spreading fast and furiously. Many of my favorite haunts have the Southern Star beer on tap these days. The latest that I’ve seen it in the cooler at has been the Harp. Even the new kid on the block, Diesel Dive Bar, has three of the brews behind the counter including the (vastly overpriced in Diesel’s case) stout Buried Hatchet. No, I don’t want to pay eight dollars for my beer, but I’ll bite the bullet to support the local product. Harp has Bombshell Blonde in a can, though they may have more. I didn’t get that far into my beer flight on Monday night. Two beers is enough for me that early in the week… most of the time. I think my favorite thing about Southern Star and their can distribution is that bartenders almost feel guilty for serving it to you as is. Every time I’ve ordered the beer I’m asked if I would like a glass. No one has ever asked me if I would want my Pabst served to me in a can. For the record, no, I don’t want a glass. I prefer to drink my beer out of a can. It makes me feel classy that way.
Ziggy’s Bar and Grill and Early Saturday Morning Hospitality (Richard)
When making the decision on where to meet my parents for breakfast was delegated to me, I sought out a place that had a fair reputation, but not the kind where the line was likely going to be out the door upon arrival. Ziggy’s in Montrose was this place, with its bright yellow exterior and ample patio space out front, it called fervently on such a beautiful Saturday morning. Catty-cornered from Dean’s Credit Clothing, I came upon the restaurant converted house half an hour before they opened. Tausha, my soon-to-be waitress greeted me warmly, assuring me that I could sit outside and drink my coffee while I waited for my parents to arrive. With the occasional dog walker, Radiohead/Sneaker Pimps duet, or chirping finch being the only noises to accompany me, I was able to sit idly with my Texas Pecan coffee and enjoy an utterly empty Taft and Fairview. My parents arrived an hour later with quite a hunger, so we wasted no time in ordering a few of Ziggy’s healthy breakfast entrees. I got the Eggs Benedict with Cilantro Hollandaise while my parents both ordered the Sweet Potato Breakfast Hash, and Pita Chips with Humus for starters (note: they served an appetizer at breakfast). After enjoying our coffee, tea and delicious miniature feasts for what ended up being 3 and a half hours, we noticed that even at its busiest there was still plenty of space for more patrons, eager for a healthy Saturday meal.
Boldly Going Where Many Generations Have Gone Before (Paul)
For people ingrained with University of Houston tradition, Frontier Fiesta is nothing new. Started back in the 50s, it soon became a hit and was dubbed as The Greatest College Show on Earth back when it was fairly new. After a few decades off, Fiesta was resurrected and once again became the apple of the eye of many a college organization. It’s been a decade since my first Frontier Fiesta and it is always interesting to see how it changes from year to year but is never quite different from that first trip. This year we had the added pleasure of Brian Royo – of No Label Brewing Company and our First Sip – hosting a Barley Wine tasting. Oh, what hoppy goodness that was. Seven different brews from which to sample. From Stone Brewery’s Old Guardian to Real Ale’s Sisyphus, the barley wines ran the gauntlet from hoppy to sweet. There were definitely no complaints from the crew and I when it came to having the opportunity to try the different styles. It’s always important to feel knowledgeable – or at least seasoned – when it comes to drinking. This cannot be overstated.
The Emperor’s New Clothes (Paul)
I think we’ve gone out of our way to establish that I’m not a morning person. Day to day it’s always the greatest battle for me to leave the comfort of my bed for the unforgiving dawn. Exceptions must always be made when it comes to staff meetings (especially when your staff is annoyingly adamant about having a breakfast rendezvous). After debating the establishment where we would meet, we finally agreed on Empire Cafe. For the dozens and dozens of times that I’ve been at Empire, I’ve never had breakfast. That’s not just because mornings and myself don’t get along, it’s because every time I’ve driven by the cafe the line is out the door and then some. Being the impatient soul that I’ve embraced, I don’t like having to wait for food, especially breakfast. Nine is the perfect time to show up in the early hours of Sunday. We beat the rush by a good forty-five minutes, were served promptly and were able to get through a whole slew of Loopster business before the ravens were able to abscond with a scone or three. Stephan remarked that it was his first breakfast at Empire Cafe that the food wasn’t horrible. Having no litmus test for brunch, I can’t reinforce his sentiment. All I know is that my Benedict a la Florentine was a great start to my day. The hollandaise sauce could have been a bit more rich in my opinion, but it was far from insulting.