Top 5: Food Head Scratchers

Categories: Top Five

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Jus' Mac.
The world of food and drink can at times be puzzling. Here are five things we wonder about the Houston food scene.

5. Jus' Mac: Is it?
I don't have a problem with Jus' Mac's food. I'm not a big macaroni and cheese guy, but their product (on my only visit) was pretty darn good. But shouldn't a place called Jus' Mac be serving, wait for it...just mac? The cute, catchy name is a bit of a broken promise-Jus' Mac also serves salads, panini, and desserts. For example, I wouldn't open a restaurant, call it "Only Eggrolls," and offer diners crab rangoon and spare ribs as well. I'm jus' sayin'.

4. Dunkin Donuts: I'm waiting
Wasn't Dunkin Donuts supposed to infiltrate H-Town a few years back? I know there are a few scattered around the city, but I thought Dunkin' was about to leave a Starbuck-esque footprint. I'm just wondering if this will ever happen. I long for another mega-chain option, especially one that serves delicious coffee at a reasonable price. Here's an idea, Dunkin can keep the donuts, and just open up little coffee stands around the city. This would also allow Shipley's to continue its donut domination.

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That's one way to spell it...
3. Alfred's: Please come back!
Do you remember Alfred's? Many of you probably don't. But, I do. And, I miss this place that closed many moons ago. Those people unfamiliar with Alfred's should think Kenny and Ziggy's, but less expensive and a little more laid back. Don't get me wrong, I love K&Z's, but Alfred's had so much character and the food was so good. I can still remember eating that delicious matzo soup. Why can't a city the size of Houston have a restaurant like this again? We need it, and as long as we don't have it, it will continue to be a head scratcher for yours truly.

2. Mini Me Food Trucks
I love the monster-size food trucks around town. But they're never on my side of town. How about a mini food truck that spawns from the bigger version? Does this exist? And if not, then why not? If it does, could someone please give me the heads up? Could you imagine a truck like Oh My! Pocket Pies making home deliveries? I'd pay for that transport cost. How cool would it be to have hot pocket pies delivered to your front door? The answer--very cool.

1. Barbecue: What's in a name?
This one absolutely befuddles me. Why must every popular barbeque joint spell "barbecue" differently? I bet you've never even realized it, and until recently, I had no idea either. It's true. Open your eyes and you'll see--Gatlin's BBQ, Pierson & Company Bar-B-Que, Gabby's Barbeque, Pizzitola's Bar-B-Cue, and Lyndon's Bar-B-Q. If I ever master my rib recipe, I'm opening up Kevin's BaR-B-qUe. Hopefully, that domain name hasn't already been taken.



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40 comments
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Calebg
Calebg

Jus' Mac is just broadening their appeal. It's a catchy name and yet you find fault with it? Look at Chili's who doesn't have chili on their menu (Yes they serve Chili) Just stick to the food and don't worry about anything else.

Annoyed Reader
Annoyed Reader

The reason Jus' Mac gave other options OTHER than mac/cheese is that their customers wanted a few more choices OTHER than just mac/cheese. You base a restaurant on what the customers want and feedback as well. I commend Jus' Mac to provide a few more options other than just mac/cheese, although its their primary focus. Gosh, because they serve beer too? really Kevin? Mac and cheese is STILL their primary focus -- maybe a salad isn't so bad, ya know?

EMME
EMME

Jus' doesn't mean just, it is the plural/possessive for Jus which is Mr. and Mrs' Mac's first name. :)

Ugoguurl
Ugoguurl

In defense of Jus' Mac! I am very happy that they serve a few other options besides mac n' cheese. Which if I am not mistaken were only recently added. My husband does not like macaroni and cheese (no matter HOW DELICIOUS it is here!) so if they did not have paninis we would not eat there. If this is your biggest complaint about this restaurant, then I would say they are doing pretty good.

Blake
Blake

Crunkin' Donuts 4 Lyfe!

Jay Francis
Jay Francis

You could also go with "Kevin's Barbe a Cule" (Kevin's Beard to Buttocks). Actually, now I wonder how a Beard To Buttocks Cafe would do. I must mention to T.J. Cookwell's.

A Press Reader
A Press Reader

Jus' Mac: Really, Kevin? C'mon now, let's not split hairs. If Jus'Mac were serving eggrolls, I might find more merit in your point. On a menu with 16 different macaroni entrees and the only two appetizers also being mac-based, I cannot fault a business owner for serving two salads and six paninis on courageously almost all-mac menu. Is the restaurant name a "bit of a broken promise?" Uggh, yes, I suppose. Do I care? No.

EMME
EMME

Barbecue joints often serve hamburgers. So what's the beef with Jus Mac serving sandwiches.

Kevin Shalin
Kevin Shalin

Because I don't know a place called Jus' Ribs. If there was such a place, I'd expect to get just ribs. If you walked in and could get potato salad and brisket and baked beans, you'd be like "what I minute, one of the reasons I came here was the intrigue of going to a place that serves just ribs".

SirRon
SirRon

I went to Sweet Tomato yesterday. Those mthrfkrs.

cheezy
cheezy

I haven't been to Just Mac, but now am tempted to go and ask them why they have more than "just mac" on their menu... hmmm

stwilhelm
stwilhelm

I miss Alfred's and Lee's Den!!!!!

Scott218
Scott218

They should serve caviar and call it Mac 'n' Roe.

Sean Whittaker
Sean Whittaker

Well shoot, now I feel like an id10t. I need to learn to read ALL the comments before spouting off whatever comes into my head.

Megan
Megan

I love this! Somehow get John McEnroe to be their spokesman.....

Jay Francis
Jay Francis

If not him then the guy from Comedy Central with the awful program Tosh 2.0.Mac'n Tosh.

Clint Eastwood, Mac My Day?

Kevin Shalin
Kevin Shalin

I salute you Scott218 for submitting the greatest comment in the history of the universe.

SirRon
SirRon

I can't figure out the puzzle.

Fatty FatBastard
Fatty FatBastard

How do you remember Alfred's? Wasn't that in the 60's? It morphed into Kahn's, which was great. Sadly, it was sold to someone recently, and I've heard it has been going downhill.

Albert Nurick
Albert Nurick

Alfred's was going at least through the 80's. I remember going there as a kids with my dad; best corned beef I've ever had.

y knot
y knot

Alfred's did not morph into Kahn's. Alfred's son opened his own deli and called it Kahn's. He did serve the same recipe Corn Beef and other sandwiches as Alfred's but they were not the same company. Also, Alfreds did not close until the early to mid 90's on Stella Link.

I also miss Lee's Den. It was dirty and smelly, but they had the best egg roll, wonton soup, and shrimp and lobster sauce. Other stuff was good too. Some times you just miss good old Cantonese comfort food. They were also open until 4AM I think.

kylejack
kylejack

Kahn's was started by Alfred and later turned over to Mike (and sold by Mike a few years ago).

Mark H
Mark H

Kahn's wanted to be like his father but was not even close.....Alfred, stacked his corn beef sandwiches, cutting the corned beef across the grain....putting them on that great rye bread... Kahns used a crappy commercial rye bread, cut the corned beef haphazardly, tossing it in a pile, running it thru a cheap little grill oven... Lee's Den was back when all we knew in Houston was Cantonese Chinese food....and you are right, they did have the best egg rolls, shrimp with lobster sauce, soup, etc... The closest thing to it today is China Garden over on Leeland... their eggrolls are some of the best in the city, but still don't compete with Lee's Den...

Kevin Shalin
Kevin Shalin

My last experience at Alfred's was the early 90's...in high school. I was a young man in search of a great bowl of soup...and a knish.

Jessica
Jessica

I recommend McDonalds coffee. $1.08 for a small cup. Consumer reports did a taste test a few years ago and McDonalds beat out Starbucks and I believe Dunkin Donuts

kylejack
kylejack

Beating Starbucks is a cinch because they destroy perfectly good beans with their over-roasting. I find DD better than McDonald's, but McDonald's does serve a decent fast food cup, and higher caffeine, according to the numbers I saw.

Dennis H.
Dennis H.

My dad supplied the bread at Alfred's. After his bakery closed he worked for Alfred's in Town and Country and Stella Link. Miss it? You bet.

Mark H
Mark H

I remember that bread! Especially the rye....your father's company even put a label on the bread! I remember....the name was H.......W....Z... right?

BertWeimmanTVFM
BertWeimmanTVFM

Uwe, the deli manager at Spec's, came from Alfred's; hence all the great German foodstuff at Spec's midtown.

Gerimariaharris
Gerimariaharris

I don't think I have ever laughed hard at a post. Mini Me Food Trucks? Barbie Kew? Great stuff Kevin. It must be interesting living inside your head.

Joanna
Joanna

Maybe they should have called it Mac 'n' More.

Hmm, maybe not.

Sean Whittaker
Sean Whittaker

Love the idea! I'd go with a place that served Mac with fish eggs. You could call it Mac 'n' Roe. It could feature short dudes with big hair perms screaming at the customers.

Sean Whittaker
Sean Whittaker

Gah, just read Scott218's comment below. Great minds something something.

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