BONUS ROUND: HRW has been extended through September because of Harvey. Get out there and eat your heart out to help out the Houston Food Bank!
PRAISE BE. It’s here. Houston Restaurant Weeks has commenced, and now until Labor Day, 280 restaurants have prix fixe menus for lunch, dinner and brunch for $20, $35/$45 and $22, respectively. It’s inarguably a great deal, but even better: A portion of the proceeds go to Houston Food Bank. So have your charity and eat yummy food too.
It’s pretty amazing, for just so many reasons. However, there’s a strategy to it for sure. Obviously you can’t make it to all 280 eateries, but if you do, so so proud. For the rest of us mortals, check out my tips.
Step 1. Invest in some stretchy pants or flowey dresses.
Let’s be real. None of these set menus are going to be best for your beach bod. Accept it, and lean into the fattening dessert that concludes all of your meals. I’m the type of person that, when asked “And do we need to see some dessert menus this evening?”, I say, “Is wine a dessert?” SO, I’m really treated when it comes to HRW’s dessert options.
But also dessert aside…. don’t forget that it’s THREE full courses for dinner and two for lunch. Tuck. In.
Step 2. Clear all your plans from now until Labor Day. You’ll be busy eating.
Your nephew’s baptism party? You can skip it. I mean, like go to the church service, but come on. He won’t remember whether you came or not. Your sibling might, but they’ll understand when you Instagram your delicious fajitas from El Tiempo.
Going out of town? Forget about it. Hopefully you booked Southwest and can keep that credit. If not, well then you should of booked Southwest, what were you thinking? You only have yourself to blame.
Birthday dinner with the BF? OK, I’m not a monster. You can go… as long as it’s at one of the participating HRW restaurants and he doesn’t mind splitting the two entrees you want but couldn’t decide between.
Importing noon meeting at work? Quit. You don’t need that negativity in your life.
Step 3. Consult the website to pick a roster of your must-go restaurants that are participating.
Make it a long list with information like: part of town, vegetarian friendly? (if that’s important to you), hours, etc.
Keep this list in your phone and whenever hunger hits, out it comes. Good. You’re only 5 minutes from Fleming’s.
This is actually super helpful for me, because 280 restaurants is a lot, and if you don’t do appropriate research and just go to the website each time, then you might not ever get past the As, and there are some really, really good deals down past the beginning of the alphabet. Scroll, baby, scroll.
Bonus: The website lets you do an advance search to zero in on different types of cuisine or neighborhood. So if you’re a
free spirit non-list person, there you go.
Step 4. Document appropriately.
- Snapchat. Can we make a HRW filter? You know, one that makes your face/body 15 pounds heavier.
- Instagram. Link your Facebook account and share that ish there too.
- Live Tweet. “YUM! Just got my app at Grotto. #Drool #HRW #YAASQUEEN
- Foursquare. I know, no one checks in anymore because stranger danger, but risk it. Yolo.
Step 5. Remember that at the end of the day, you helped feed our city’s hungry. Go you.
It’s sometimes frustrating when your pick has an hour-long wait or the waiter seems like a jerk because he won’t substitute your shrimp for avocado, but perspective. This is among the most influential, widespread and ironically charitable event Houston does (how funny is it that we help feed the hungry by stuffing our own faces?). Shake off the frustration you might have this month to remember what’s really important: Food. For EVERYONE, not just you.