100 Favorite Dishes: No. 70, Moules-Frites at the Broken Spoke

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​This year leading up to our annual Best of Houston issue, we're counting down our 100 favorite dishes in Houston. This list comprises our favorite dishes from the last year, dishes that are essential to Houston's cultural landscape and/or dishes that any visitor (or resident) should try at least once.

It's a given that the mussels should be good at a Belgian restaurant. But at the Broken Spoke, you get much more than a solid pot of mussels; you also get some of the city's best fries and owner Catherine Duwez.

In addition to making a thick, lemon-zinged mayonnaise for your frites, Duwez will warn you ahead of time if the mussels are too small to really be enjoyed. Right now, however, they're ideal: fat and plump and almost too big to be believed. La Complet Belge is my favorite way to enjoy the duo of mussels and fries, because it comes with a pint of Stella Artois to round it out -- and all for $25, which is only $5 more than just the pot of moules marinières alone.

And if you're adventurous, Duwez will whip up a special dipping sauce for the mussels with her wonderful mayonnaise. In the style of Antwerp, the sauce is meant for the mussels only -- "not the fries!" as she will quickly point out -- and is made by whipping mayonnaise together with malt vinegar. The combination is addictive, especially on the briny-sweet, super plump mussels that I pop like candy until the pot is empty.

The list so far:

No. 100: Dumplings at Heights Asian Cafe
No. 99: Mixta Pizza at Friends Pizzeria
No. 98: Veggie tacos from Radical Eats
No. 97: Bean pie from Conscious Cafe
No. 96: Swiss chard crepes from Giacomo's Cibo e Vino
No. 95: Eggs Mia Bella at Mia Bella
No. 94: Mulligatawny soup at the Queen Vic
No. 93: Helado de Lúcuma from Pollo Bravo
No. 92: Black bean burger from Natachee's
No. 91: Chupacabra pizza from ERA
No. 90: Roast chicken from El Norteño
No. 89: Eggs El Salvador from Brasil
No. 88: Frank the Pretzel from Eatsie Boys
No. 87: Caldo Tlalpeño from Tacos del Julio
No. 86: English pea soup at Brasserie 19
No. 85: Falafel from Zabak's
No. 84: Buttermilk-fried pork loin with fried eggs at Canopy
No. 83: Grillades and grits from BB's Cajun Cafe
No. 82: Haemul dolsot from Seoul House
No. 81: Pandan waffles at Parisian Bakery III
No. 80: Pita bread and hummus at Phoenicia
No. 79: Goat pepper soup at Peppersoup Cafe
No. 78: Melon and Texas feta salad from Beaver's
No. 77: Hot Italian beef from BB's Beef & Hot Dog
No. 76: Bacon-avocado burger from Facundo Cafe
No. 75: Pancakes from Fountain View Cafe
No. 74: Hobnobs from Fluff Bake Bar
No. 73: Chu chee eggplant from Nidda Thai
No. 72: Sausage sampler from King's Biergarten
No. 71: Shawarma from Abdallah's

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Location Info

Broken Spoke Cafe - CLOSED

1809 Washington, Houston, TX

Category: Restaurant

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My Voice Nation Help

I wish this place had better bread. It's a little bit lame. Last time I went (several months ago) I thought it was stale.


Gotta say, there's a little place called Jeannine's that has great moules frites...same kitchen staff from an unlikely place I used to like-- name of Cafe Montrose.


You knew what you were getting into when you picked Belgian. I'm surprised you got off so easy today.

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