The Eatsie Boys Cafe: As Colorful As the Characters Who Run It

Categories: Local Spotlight

Photos by Troy Fields
The assembled cast and crew of the Eatsie Boys Cafe.
Every once in a while, I'll visit a place that's too colorful to simply paint with words. The Eatsie Boys Cafe -- the new brick-and-mortar outgrowth of the original Eatsie Boys food truck -- is one such spot.

It's also the subject of this week's cafe review, which means that our talented photographer Troy Fields went out to capture the Eatsie Boys's vibrant environs with pictures that are worth several thousands of words. In this week's slideshow, you can see the graffiti murals by local artist Skeez181 and the colorful thicket of umbrellas that sprouts from Eatsie Boys's patio -- prime real estate while the weather is this inviting.

Big Shrimpin': a Gulf Coast banh mi.
You can also check out the scene in the busy kitchen, where chef Matt Marcus and his crew have been drawing attention for their interpretations of Vietnamese dishes like pho and banh mi into creations like the fried shrimp-stuffed sandwich called "Big Shrimpin'" and the chicken broth-based matzoh ball pho.

You'd think I'd be growing tired of Vietnamese fusion dishes, but the cuisine lends itself to so many iterations and interpretations that I don't see it wearing thin...yet. That "yet" will inevitably happen when someone comes along and mangles into existence a Southwest-infused spring roll for Chili's, but that time is still blissfully far away in some as-yet-unwritten future.

For now, the clever minds at work inside the Eatsie Boys Cafe are simply infusing their food with passion -- a passion that stems at least in part from a rich food scene in Houston, a culture that's flush with ideas to inspire those who are eager, curious and creative. That's the Eatsie Boys in a nutshell.

Read more about the Eatsie Boys Cafe in this week's cafe review or explore the cafe -- inside and out -- in our slideshow.

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Their nasty signs directed at library patrons are enough for me to never want to eat there.


that shrimp banh mi soudns good, but did i read that right? it's $12? for what looks like 4 shrimp? that's kind of steep, no?

kshilcutt moderator editor

@melissa I must have missed those. What do they say?


@Matthew That has to be some sort of typo, it has to be. This is Houston, we have a plethora of choice that keeps prices down.


@Matthew Yes, I ordered that sandwich and it was definitely not worth the $.  We spent nearly $40 on a lunch for 2 and left unsatisfied.  The french fries (sold separately) and desert cookie were the highlights of the meal.  

Bruce_Are topcommenter


I'll assume the high price is because the sandwich is all artisan and stuff.

For $5.50 you can get a shrimp banh mi from Nobi that appears to be about twice the size.  And for $5 more chase it down with an Old Crustacean.


@kshilcutt @melissa the sign says outdoor seats are reserved for Eatsie Boys customers. Not sure how that is offensive...


@Bruce_Are @Matthew You can pay three times as much at Niko Nikos for a wait in line and mediocre food among Hispano-Greeks.


@Bruce_Are @Matthew I'm not going to get into a price war mainly because they are dumb and also that's what fatty fat bastard is for: to come in and tell us all how he paid 34 cents for the same thing back in 2003 at some shithole no one has ever heard of

That said, I LOVE Nobi. A LOT.  They catapulted themselves to my top 10 beer bars in town in a single visit. Their food on it's very best day can't touch Eatsie Boys.  I don't mean that as an insult.  And I don't mean that to say it's not good, because it is.  It's leagues away from Eatsie Boys.

I do remember my Big Shrimpin being larger than the one pictured though.  I barely finished it.  and I think it came with a salad as well.

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