LOCAL Houston | The City Guide JULY 2016 - Page 23

FOOD | ARTS | COMMUNITY | STYLE+LEISURE One of Houston’s great dining pleasures and a Rice Village institution, the Spanish/Cuban restaurant has been going strong, operated by the same family since the ’80s (now onto the third generation, with daughter & sommelier Jessica running the wine program)! This is not a common occurrence, dear readers! So grab a dark wood booth along the wall or one of the many white-clothed tables in the spacious (but very traditional) dining area and enjoy some fantastic wine, the famous paellas and the extensive list of tapas and wine. Go ahead, order a few tapas or start with a margarita before that bottle of wine – you deserve it. El Meson is a comfortable place where you can enjoy a meal made with ingredients that speak for themselves, have a conversation where you can actually hear the rest of your party, have a glass of wine with the owners and mingle with new friends who have called El Meson a second home for years. We can’t emphasize enough how much of a treat it is to have a restaurant like this, especially in our town where restaurants come and go quite quickly. Please, do go and see for yourself. So here we have the perfect summer pair, the WHITE SANGRIA and CRABCAKE. Hot d@mn, that crab was so good. Excuse us. So fresh, and perfectly cooked melt-in-your-mouth crab, slightly crisp on the outside and dressed in sliced pineapple and mint chiffonade. It also has a nice kick from the ginger & grapefruit reduction which pretty much yells summer when it hits your mouth. So does this impeccable sangria. Simple, with quality ingredients (much like the entire menu at El Meson), you’ll notice the absence of fruit pieces in this effervescent treat. El Meson makes it with the excellent Spanish liqueur Licor 43, a crisp & dry white wine, some orange juice and a splash of soda water for a nice added pop. That Licor 43 drops more citrus and hints of vanilla into the delightfully refreshing (but not sweet) drink. This is just one of many perfect pairs available to enjoy at El Meson. Here’s to another 35 years. By Mike Cook Photography by Sarah Miller EL MESON | 2425 University Blvd. | Houston, TX 77005 | 713.522.9306 www.elmeson.com | Info@elmeson Mon–Sat 11am–10pm, Sun 12–9pm july 16 | L O C A L 23