What I did this weekend in the Cliff Notes version. You’re welcome!
1) Ate blue crabs. If you’ve ever eaten crabs, or any kind of shellfish for that matter, you know it’s a lot of work for a little bit of meat. On the off chance you were wondering, you can rest assured that blue crabs are no different. Nevertheless, we had a coupon for them at Ragin Cajun which hasn’t always been my favorite cajun food joint. I don’t hate it, but it’s always seemed like the “Joe’s Crab Shack” of Houston cajun food. I know that will annoy the entirety of the Houston food population, but before y’all fire up your Ford F-150’s and race off to the comment board, let me say that I’ve been eating there more often of late and am having a slight change of heart.
The service is great, the beer is cold, the food is growing on me, but the atmosphere gets me every time — I love their relaxed, laid-back attitude and all-around good time! But I digress.
The blue crabs were fifty thousand kinds of awesome! We had both boiled and barbecued crabs, some delicious Frenchman Street tacos (think cajun-style fish tacos) and my all-time fave dirty rice. I hadn’t cracked a crab claw since the Cretaceous period but it was the most fun I’ve had eating out in a long time. Swizzled some beers. Watched some Olympic swimming. Passed on the vegan cookies (wtf?). And had a damn good time!
Fun fact: I learned that Ragin Cajun’s new side bar, LA Bar, is actually not an abbreviation of “Louisiana”, which would be purely logical being that it’s a CAJUN restaurant and all. Instead, it’s actually a reference to Lake Arthur, Louisiana, a place I was certain did not exist. I mean, my people are from Baton Rouge and I cannot tell you how many thousands of miles I’ve traveled between Houston and Baton Rouge in my lifetime. THOUSANDS! And never once had I heard of “Lake Arthur”. I’d heard of Port Arthur and Lake Charles, but not Lake Arthur. However, after one swipe at the Google, I was proven wrong and learned that there is, in fact, a Lake Arthur, Louisiana, namesake of Ragin Cajun’s new bar. I guess I have to go now…and shouldn’t I get a free drink or something out of it?
2) Went to a first birthday party. The daughter of one of my best friends turned one last week and, as such, a party was required. My friend has amazing taste and, thankfully, she decorated in a fantastically tasteful fashion which was much appreciated, by me anyway. There were 55 adults and a slew of kids and, since it monsooned in Houston all weekend, there were 70+ people crammed into their house. Thankfully, there was alcohol which was also most appreciated by me. We ate,watched E put her hands in her little cake and wipe it all over her face, oohed and aahed, and called it a day. As first birthday parties go, it could have been a lot worse and I had a good time talking to all our friends I haven’t seen since the baby shower (i.e., in a year). I guess I’ll see y’all again next year! 😉
3) Ate at Olivette at the Houstonian to celebrate my mom’s 65th birthday. I refrained from photo taking for once, but all I can say is go. The petite filet with bacon jam was outstanding, as was the service. It might be one of my new favorite places in Houston.
4) Played Cranium and lost, but not without a fight! A bunch of my friends got together for game night and, being that the majority of them went to grad school at Rice and/or are attorneys, we ended up playing Cranium. I got there in the middle of the second game, but I can tell you with utmost certainty that it was a hard-fought night and our team did not go down without a fight, namely from my friend who’s an attorney and who I thought might file a petition with the US Supreme Court over one particular question. She was hyper-aggressive in her defense of our team and I decided then and there that, if and when I should ever need legal counsel, she is hired!
Despite our best efforts, we lost. And, as it was previously decided that the losing team would do the can-can on video, we danced. I would post the video here, but I’d be banished to eternal damnation and since I’m not a fan of the heat, I’m going to refrain. But it’s A-W-E-S-O-M-E!
We also hung out and drank beer on the best patio in Houston that is complete with a cow head with glowing red eyes. Fantastic.
5) Ate brunch. A few of my girlfriends and I have started a brunch club, mostly because the five of us love to get together for brunch and “no return” lunches, so we just said we were now an official brunch club. Members only. 🙂
Today we went to Max’s Wine Dive for the crack that is known as their Fried Egg Sandwich. I am a sucker for a good fried egg sammie and Max’s never disappoints. It’s served with truffle-oiled homemade potato chips and is pretty much the best thing I’ve had in my mouth in a long time. 😉 The best part of the day: one of my friends was carrying his work beeper and, needless to say, we razzed him mercilessly. Seriously, who still carries a pager?! “Hit me on the hip, yo!” I’m pretty sure his beeper needs its own Facebook page under the newly-created category “So 1992”.
Unlike most brunch places, Max’s features “make your own mimosas” where you buy the bottle of champagne and they give you little carafes of fresh orange and grapefruit juices. We plowed through no fewer than six bottles and it probably goes without saying that we had a fabulous time! Fantastic food + fantastic people = the perfect end to a great weekend.