My Houston Restaurant Weeks Experience

“Established in 2003, it is a fun-filled dining event benefiting the Houston Food Bank.”

Houston Restaurant Weeks is a “for-charity” event that many restaurants in the greater Houston area participate in. This event allows you to dine at more expensive restaurants, for very reasonable prices. Houston Restaurant Weeks is great because it allows you to enjoy yourself and at the same time, benefit others. See a breakdown of prices, donation rates, and meals generated:

MEAL PRICE

RESTAURANT DONATES 
TO FOOD BANK

NUMBER OF MEALS GENERATED
BY FOOD BANK FROM DONATION

$20: 2-3 course lunch

 $3 donation

9 meals

$20: 2-3 course brunch

$3 donation

 9 meals

$35: 3-4 course brunch

$5 donation

 15 meals

$35: 3-4 course dinner

$5 donation

 15 meals

$45: 3-4 course dinner

$7 donation

 21 meals

Cleverley Stone founded this event in 2003 and so far Houston Restaurant Weeks has raised more than $2.9 million to fight hunger in Houston. The donations go to Houston Food Bank, which is “the nation’s largest size Feeding America food bank and source of food for hunger relief charities in 18 southeast Texas counties.” The Houston Food Bank was founded in 1982 and provides 64 million nutritious meals annually.

This year, the event began on August 1st and will last until September 2nd, so check it out!

To learn more about Houston Restaurant Weeks and the Houston Food Bank, see: Houston Restaurant Weeks: About Us.

My Experience – The Flight & The Food

I was lucky enough to be chosen by my company (the makers of Hertz NeverLost and My Explore) to come to Houston and take part in Houston Restaurant Weeks! Since I grew up just south of Houston (about 65 miles), this news was very exciting to me!! Traveling for work and getting to enjoy amazing food while doing it, who wouldn’t love that?! 🙂

The Flight

Normally, when I travel back and forth from Houston to Dallas (where I live now), I drive about 5 hours to get there. I haven’t flown in about three years and I had never done it alone! So, this was a new adventure for me! I have to admit, everything that you have to do in order to finally board your plane, can be a bit hectic. However, I’m VERY proud of myself for accomplishing all of the steps. For instance, I had to do all of the following by myself for the first time:

The Takeoff

  • Park my car at Dallas Love Field Airport
  • Figure out where to check my bags
  • Learn how to smoothly pass through security
  • Find the correct gate
  • FLY BY MYSELF

The Landing

  • Navigate William P. Hobby Airport now that I’d landed
  • Figure out where to pick up my luggage
  • Find the shuttle that goes to the Hertz location
  • Pick up my rental car
  • Drive to my hotel

I’m not sure how big of an accomplishment some people will think this is, but I’ve talked to a few people in my life and we all agree that this is a very important step in the career of a young businesswoman. Traveling alone is a part of growing up and becoming an independent adult! I’m only 22-years old and now that I’ve done this successfully, I can definitely see more trips in my future!

Take a look at some of the things I experienced on my first flight alone! (Click to scroll through as larger images)

The Food

Once I got settled into my hotel in Houston, it was time to start thinking about the food I would soon eat! I arrived Wednesday night and decided to take it easy and relax. I made dinner reservations for Thursday night and lunch reservations for Friday afternoon. I was beyond excited!

Dinner

I chose to have dinner in the Memorial City area of Houston, at Perry’s Steakhouse & Grille. Perry’s Steakhouse & Grille started as a “modest meat market” in 1979. Since then, it has “grown into a renowned group of award-winning restaurants presenting you with a stunning array of culinary creations.” The Memorial City Location features:

  • An outstanding menu
  • An elegant atmosphere
  • An eclectic ambiance
  • Eight private dining rooms
  • A cocktail lounge and piano bar
  • A 20-foot tall climate-controlled wine tower

This restaurant had a very romantic atmosphere, which made it the perfect spot to share a meal! The menus at participating restaurants for this event are normally a scaled down version of the restaurant’s actual menu, but don’t let this bother you! The options are still amazing! Also, the portions at Perry’s were HUGE!

I split a three-course meal with a friend and we had more than plenty  to eat, plus leftovers!! Our first course was the Caesar Salad, our second course was the Perry’s Famous Pork Chop, and our third course was the Milk Chocolate Peanut Butter Candy Bar. Also, we opted to order extra sides and for those we chose the Macaroni & Cheese and the Au Gratin Potatoes. This was one of the best dinners I have EVER had! My favorite foods were the macaroni & cheese and the pork chop. The macaroni & cheese had some sort of Alfredo sauce on it for extra taste. The type of noodles combined with the unique flavor, made for a very tasty pasta dish! The pork chop was huge, tender, and delicious! The server cut the dish into three portions for us and explained which parts we should eat first and what we should put on it. For example, he recommended eating one portion with a side of applesauce that came with it. As for the other parts, I just mixed it in with my mac & cheese and potatoes!

Doesn’t this look appetizing??

Dinner

Macaroni & Cheese, Au Gratin Potatoes, Perry’s Famous Pork Chop, and the Milk Chocolate Peanut Butter Candy Bar

Watch this slideshow to see some other great pictures from the dinner I went to at Perry’s Steakhouse & Grille.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Lunch

For lunch, I had plans to meet up with my grandmother, who loves Italian food! So, we chose to eat at Arturo’s Uptown Italiano, near the Galleria Mall in Houston. “Arturo’s Uptown Italiano is presented by veteran Houston restaurateur Bill Sadler. The truly elegant interior features golden hues and stone walls, cherrywood floors, red booths, a handsome bar and soft lighting.” See a list of some things offered from the menu:

  • Antipasti
  • Salads
  • Pasta
  • Seafood
  • Steaks
  • Dessert
  • Wine

This restaurant was very cute! I immediately liked the vibe that I got when I walked in, from the decorations to the way the restaurant was lit! Since I was still a little full from last night’s delicious meal (yes, I really was) and my grandma had a big breakfast, we decided to share our lunch. This worked out well for us! Our first course was the Mozzaralla Di Bufala Caprese, our second course was the Fettuccine, and we chose the Cannolis for our third course! The first course was buffalo mozzarella, heriloom tomatoes, and fresh basil. To be honest, it wasn’t really for me, but it was okay! The second course was supposed to be Grilled Shrimp Fettuccine, but they let us substitute the shrimp for chicken, because I don’t like seafood. Both the chicken and the pasta were really good! However, my absolute favorite part of this meal was the Cannolis! They were filled with a really tasty cream and had fruit on the side. Mhmm, so good! Overall, I really enjoyed this lunch! But, dinner still wins in my book!

Take a look at my lunch experience!

Lunch at Arturo's Uptown Italiano

Lunch at Arturo’s Uptown Italiano

Watch this slideshow for a few more pictures from Arturo’s:

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

All in all, this experience has been amazing and I’m SO glad that I got to participate in Houston Restaurant Weeks!

If you get a chance, you should definitely check out some of the amazing deals!

I have to catch my flight back to Dallas! Hope everyone had a good weekend!

Melissa Woodring 🙂

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One comment on “My Houston Restaurant Weeks Experience

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    August 3, 2014 at 11:25 am #

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