I am so behind on updating my blog with my foodie adventures! My goal is to catch up over the holiday break, so bear with me as I post some things from awhile back. Several months ago I attended a Houston Food Blogger Collective board meeting at downtown’s Bovine & Barley restaurant/bar. We had the opportunity to sample Bovine & Barley’s new brunch menu for dinner and as you know this girl loves brunch!
Setup/Location– Bovine & Barley is off of Main street downtown. When I was in college Main street was briefly the Houston hotspot. From the looks of it Bovine and Barley is part of the revitalization attempts for downtown Houston. I am all for it! Spots like Bovine and Barley are right off of the light rail. I would love Houston to become the type of city that uses mass transit for nights out on the town. One day perhaps!
Bovine & Barley’s space is so pretty to me. A huge HTX lighted sign greets you as you enter. I LOVE this sign. This sign alone is the reason I was eager to visit this spot. The space is anchored by a large bar right in the middle with booths and tables on the sides. They also have TVs everywhere for your viewing pleasure. We held our meeting in the loft like private event space upstairs. It is near the DJ booth and overlooks the main dining area. It is a comfortable spot for a small party or meeting.
Drinks: This is a bar so I was not going to skip out on the spirits during my visit. I ordered one of the “Cocktails on Tap”, the French 75 which includes Cognac, Lemon and Champagne for 9 bucks. I was pleased with this price point because it is a few bucks less than comparable bars around Midtown or Montrose. As far as the drink, I really enjoyed it. It is a light flavor, almost like a spiked lemonade, which was perfect for an after work cocktail at a meeting. I, the lightweight, finished that in a few sips!
Food: In creating their brunch menu, it is clear that Bovine & Barley wanted to have unique menu options that you cannot get anywhere else. Each of the items that I tried provided a unique spin on typical brunch foods.
First up, the Bovine Cheese Melt, a fun version of a grilled cheese. Inside you have fried cheese sticks that include some good brisket inside of the sticks. After I slid the egg to the side ( I hate eggs!) this dish was perfect! The thick bread toasts to perfection, providing a great crunch. I ate my leftovers the next day and they were equally as good.
Up next, the Quesadilla Waffle. I was so intrigued with this dish! Before knowing the name we debated among ourselves what the dish most resembled. Is it a quesadilla? A ham and cheese sandwich? A savory waffle? Quesadilla waffle truly describes this hybrid dish. It is a savory waffle stuffed with cheese similar to a quesadilla. I recall ham being included, but the Bovine & Barley menu online does not note that as an ingredient. All the same, the dish is great for those who are not in the mood for a syrupy sweet waffle.
Finally, our tasting also included a beautiful display of Stuffed French Toast. This was probably the most aesthetically pleasing dish, but I am not a fan of strawberry flavorings SO I nibbled around that part. I do not feel like I got a good enough feel for the dish to judge it. My fellow bloggers seemed to like it, so we will go with their opinions of it.
Also, they brought out the biggest onion rings I have ever seen and peppers for appetizers!
Overall: I am all about bars dabbling in the brunch menu arena! It allows us to combine two Sunday favorites, sports and brunch! Bovine & Barley goes a step above your typical sports bar fare and for that the foodie in me is grateful. I hear their happy hour is also good, so I will update my blog once I try it.