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The restaurant of the week is Fred's Italian Corner at 2278 W. Holcombe Blvd. between West University and the Texas Medical Center in Houston.
Having a difficult time finding a seat is a sure thing if you show up on any weekday at noon. Customers line up at the front counter to give Fred their orders for lunch, but waitor service is the order for dinner.
Satisfied customers, walls covered in rave reviews from city and college newspapers and awards are what draw large crowds to the tiny Italian eatery. To speed up the process, Fred takes the orders at his seat beside the kitchen. Waitors mysterously match plates to customers after they find seats, and they bring fresh bread and salad to the table. Try Fred's for dinner, or in the mid-afternoon for a less hectic experience.
The Linguini Grilled Checken with Alfredo is outstanding. Ordering this sizeable serving and a soft drink from Fred's help-yourself refrigerator will cost you around $10, and will be worth every penny.
In addition to many pasta dishes, Fred's serves lasagna and pizza. Call (713) 665-7506 for more information.
Update: Cafe Piquet at 6053 Bissonnet in Southwest Houston, just east of Hillcroft, will be moving soon to a new location near their current address. We will update the information soon.
The small cafe, set in the corner of a storefront shopping center, serves Cuban dinners and sandwiches. It's sign may be difficult to spot among the many Latin stores and shops. Look near the middle corner of the "L" shaped center.
The Pechuga a la Plancha, chicken breast grilled with onions, is excellent. A favorite beef dish is Picadillo.
Most of the plates are served with white rice, black beans and plantains. The cost, if you add a drink, will range from $7 to $10. It's worth spending a little extra to try some of the Cuban appetizers on the menu, such as the Mariquitas, plantain chips with garlic.
The owners, Neno and Nelly, operate the restaurant daily and can be found running the kitchen and the cash register, and visiting with the many regular customers that crowd around tables for lunch each day.
Upcoming Review | John's Broiler Burger at 723 Telephone Road
An excellent and inexpensive place to get breakfast specials, plate lunches and Greek gyros.
More Houston Area Restaurants
HOUSTON INSTITUTE FOR CULTURE | www.cultural-crossroads.com