So hear me out. I spent the weekend in Beaumont, Texas. On purpose. AND had an amazing time! Most Houstonians know about Beaumont, it’s the smaller city to the east of us that we pass on our way to Louisiana. I honestly had never stopped in Beaumont or even thought about it. So when the Beaumont Convention and Visitors Bureau invited me to come explore the city I jumped at the chance to see what the city has to offer. From the food to the attractions, Beaumont really has a lot of great stuff! Check out my recap of my Weekend in Beaumont Texas.
Where to Eat
This was very much a foodie trip! Our hosts packed in so many restaurants in a short weekend. We ate GOOD, so good that I had to stick to salads when I returned home. I honestly enjoyed all of the places we visited and the takeaway was that Beaumont has good food. I think we all recognize that the I-10 corridor has great food once we cross over in to Louisiana, but I am here to tell you it starts before then! Here are some places that I would argue are worth the stop.
Tacos La Bamba
Our first stop in Beaumont was Tacos La Bamba! Here, we grubbed on tortas, tacos, quesadillas and so much more. I absolutely loved all of the bites. For locals, be sure to stop by during their $1 Taco Tuesday!
On Saturday morning we made a quick stop to the original Rao’s Bakery. A Beaumont institution since the 1940s, patrons can expect great pastries and desserts. I devoured the mini cinnamon roll and took one to go! Their kolaches were also great with a nice soft breading.
So at this point, your girl was getting full, but they said brunch was next and obviously I am not saying no to a brunch! J. Wilson’s is a sit down restaurant serving up American fare! So many plates came out and I will not even lie and say I remember all that I tried! There were a few standouts though like the waffles, creamed spinach, hash browns AND the oyster nachos!
Carmela’s Mexican Restaurant
At this point of the list you are probably thinking, “did she really eat at ALL of these places.” Why yes I did!! Some stops were just for the highlights though. For example, here at Carmela’s we were simply here to try their highly rated queso! They threw in some fajitas as well. I thought it was pretty on par with the Mexican restaurants we like back at home. The decor was a little more kitschy, which I am generally a fan of! If you are in Beaumont and looking for queso, I would recommend a stop to Carmela’s for sure.
Amelia Farm and Market
This stop was a bit different, while they did offer food and drinks Amelia Farm and Market’s venue itself is the draw. The restaurant is literally on a family’s hog farm. So as you can imagine much of the bites include pork. We dined at picnic tables outside during sunset. I did step inside for a bit and will say between inside and outside, Amelia Farm and Market would make a great wedding or party venue!
Chaba Thai Bistro
After stops to Carmela’s and Amelia we rolled in to Chaba Thai Bistro. And I do mean rolled! I appreciated the inclusion of a Thai restaurant which highlights the diversity of the city. Here, the owners are creating Thai dishes that you are familiar with like red curry chicken, then putting their own spin on favorites like pad kee mao. I kid you not, I would make a stop in Beaumont just for that pad kee mao. Amazing flavors throughout the beautiful dish.
Katharine and Company
On Sunday we enjoyed brunch at Katharine and Company a beautiful restaurant in a historic building downtown. Katharine’s hosts a brunch every second Sunday and folks were lined up for it! Our lunch featured pancakes, avocado toast, These were all good, but the highlight has got to be the desserts!
At one of the stops, we each found a box of personalized treats with our Instagram handles from Sachi’s Sweets. I packed the box and ate them when I got home. I have to say not only did the treats keep well for almost a week, but they were delicious! Sachi’s Sweets specializes in cakes (birthdays and weddings) in the Beaumont area.
As much as we ate, there were plenty of other places that we missed! You guys know I love stopping through black owned restaurants when I visit a city! In Beaumont, Patillo’s came highly recommend. The BBQ joint opened in 1912 making it the oldest black owned bbq restaurant in Texas.
What to See
Beaumont is home to several breweries. During our visit, we stopped at just one Pour Brothers. What I found most impressive was how you get your beer! Guests are provided with a pour card (think like Dave & Busters). They are then given access to the taps to pour as little or as much as they want. If you just want to taste a beer before pouring a whole glass you can do this! It will also stop you if it thinks that you have consumed one too many. I need this to become a thing everywhere, perhaps with wine!
Houston favorite, Little Woodrow’s recently added a location in Beaumont! I stopped in briefly towards the end of one of the nights. This location is larger than some of the ones back home and has features like hammocks that put you in the mind of places like Axlerad back in Houston.
The Logon Cafe
Once a computer store back in the day, Logon Cafe now is a bar where locals can enjoy live music. As an ode to their previous life in the computer business, the bar includes old computer parts. During our visit, a band from Tyler performed and were pretty good. A few people who went to Lamar University messaged me and said that Logon Cafe was their spot back in college. So the good news is that Logon lives on folks!
The marsh is actually a wastewater treatment plant that doubles as a tourist attraction. Here, visitors can enjoy birding i.e. bird watching which is one of Beaumont’s biggest attractions. Apparently, two bird migratory patterns go through Beaumont meaning that birders can see pretty much every bird in Texas in this one city. To aid in birding activities the city added a boardwalk that takes you deep in the marsh that has the most bird activity.
During our visit, a few of us enjoyed yoga in the Cattail Marsh Wetland Education Center with beautiful views of the marsh. They also host events like paint and sips in the education center. For the birders, you can use the Ebird computer inside the center to record your bird finds. Finally, if you are a runner, you can take the track around the marsh for a total of 13 miles.
Cattail Marsh is located inside of the Tyrrell Park. The park also includes a botanical gardens, golfing and a horse stable.
Downtown (Museum and Historic Buildings)
Before heading out we did a brief walking tour of downtown Beaumont highlighting historic buildings like City Hall and the historic Jefferson Theater. Downtown Beaumont includes a children’s museum, the Art Museum of Southeast Texas and the Fire Museum of Texas. The later includes the largest working fire hydrant decked out in 101 Dalmatians spots.
You can also stop over at the Historic Crockett Street for nightlife and restaurants. Crocket Street is a historic street that kind of puts you in the mind of New Orlean’s Bourbon street. The stories of the old Crockett Street are a bit much for me to share on this family friend blog! Currently, it is home to restaurants and bars.
Just outside of Beaumont on the west side of I-10 you will find the Gator Country attraction. There guests can get up close and personal with real live gators. I did not have time to stop on the way home, but our hosts wanted to make sure we all saw a gator on this visit. SO, they brought one to the brewery (no food is served there). I am risk adverse so I refused to hold or even touch the baby gator, BUT I lived vicariously through my sister who did!
Where to Stay
MCM Elegante Hotel
Well I was a horrible blogger when it came to getting good photos of my hotel! The MCM suffered a bit of damage during Tropical Storm Imelda and is currently under construction. Even with the “pardon my dust” warnings, the hotel is clearly a unique gem. Our rooms were on the 8th floor which features a concierge suite that serves breakfast in the morning, snacks in the evening and a open bar. The 9th floor includes hot tub king suites. So again, some unique amenities that you may not have encountered in a hotel before.
Whewwww this weekend was a lot! It reminded me of my “famous” Houston tour! These trips are a marathon not a sprint, but I made it through and truly enjoyed the weekend. Beaumont has plenty of great restaurants, plus things to see and do. So the next time you are thinking of heading east on I-10 think about stopping in Beaumont for a bit.
One final note, our trip just happened to be at the start of Beaumont’s second annual restaurant week. Hosted every November, Beaumont’s Restaurant Week aims to highlight locally owned restaurants and their unique cuisine.