LOCAL Houston | The City Guide June 2017 - Page 30

OPEN | By Brian Tagtmeier BEAVER’S | GALLERIA CUISINE: All-American 6025 Westheimer | 713.714.4111 | www.beavershouston.com Mon–Thurs: 11am–10pm, Fri: 11am–11pm, Sat: 10am–11pm, Sun: 10am–9pm A big fan of Beaver’s in the Washington Corridor, I was excited by the news that they were opening a new location in the Galleria area. Taking over the spot formerly occupied by Texadelphia, owners Todd Johnson and Jon Deal have made some serious transformations to the space. A new back patio area with picnic tables, games and an Airstream turned to full bar provides fun for the whole family. The Beaver’s Den up front caters to the “older” children with a full-blown whiskey bar. The menu under Executive Chef Arash Kharat features many of the Washing- ton favorites – Texas Deviled Eggs, smoky queso and tots-n-shots. Kharat’s influence comes through in the seafood, grilled and BBQ items available at Beaver’s West. I started with the tuna tower (Yellow fin tuna, citrus ponzu, avocado, toasted sesame, seaweed salad, cucumbers and wonton chips). A very light ponzu allowed the tuna to shine. Next, grilled oysters topped with bacon, chimmichuri and ponzu were perfectly smoky and delicious. An off-menu combination of grilled Brussels sprouts is one that Kharat promised would make it full-time. Again, with a good char and combination of flavors, even a carnivore would be satisfied. Speaking of carnivores, Kharat’s BBQ sampler met my high expectations. He has two smokers that allow him to produce consistently good BBQ. The brisket had a good smoke ring and was fork tender, the pulled pork well sauced, the sausage link had great flavor not overwhelmed by the jalapenos, the ribs came off the bone easily with good char. Accompanied by the truffle mac and pickled veggies, I was impressed with the whole plate. Finishing with Beaver Balls (panko fried brownie balls, powdered peanut but- ter and sauce) made a complete meal. It’s Texas. What isn’t better deep-fried? Overall, with everything it offers, Beaver’s West provides a destination for every customer. Grilled oysters with bacon chimichurri, and pico topped w Parmesan ISLAND GRILL CUISINE: American/Mediterranean Woodway | Bellaire | Bunker Hill | www.islandgrillhouston.com Mon–Sat: 7am–4:30pm; Sun–Sun: 8am–4:30pm After nearly 17 years, Faysal Haddad, the owner of Island Grill, has established himself as one of the best at providing healthy and delicious food. In opening his fourth location – in Rice Village, in the space formerly home to Ruggles Café and Little Liberty – Island Grill is a welcome addition to the neighborhood. While focusing on Mediterranean cuisine, the menu is diverse, with a great Angus burger, pizzas, pastas and sandwiches. It also features a breakfast menu with fantastic omelets, breakfast pitas, pancakes and large (but healthy) egg dishes. Throw in the Juice Bar with plenty of tasty and nutritious drinks, and it becomes a destination after a workout or for brunch. It’s impossible, though, to come to Island Grill and someone at the table not have a pita. The chicken pita with extra garlic sauce was the perfect choice. Overflowing with marinated grilled chicken and veggies, it was exceptional. The Kabob plate with a mix of beef and chicken would be a perfect dish for sharing. I paired it with the hummus and Greek salad. The tender beef and very garlicky 30 L O C A L | june 17