100 Favorite Dishes 2013: No. 67, Bad-Ass Hambur-Torta at Pistolero's

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Photo from Pistolero's
The bad-ass hambur-torta is neither a hamburger nor a torta. Discuss.
This year, leading up to our annual Menu of Menus issue, Kaitlin Steinberg counts down her 100 favorite dishes as she eats her way through Houston. She'll compile a collection of the dishes she thinks are the most awesome, most creative and, of course, most delicious in town. It's a list of personal favorites, things she thinks any visitor or Houstonian ought to try at least once and dishes that seem particularly indicative of the ever-changing Houston foodscape. It's a list to drool over.

My dad was recently in town for a visit, and after eating fairly healthy food on the first several days of his trip, we were feeling pretty proud of ourselves. We hadn't yet given in to our normal father/daughter dining whims, which tend to include a lot of carbs and a lot of ice cream. I was trying to figure out where to take him next when he stood up from the sofa across from me and uttered a shocking proclamation:

"I want a burger. Like, a big, crazy burger with everything on it. A big, meaty, over-the-top burger."

At first I was confused, and I assumed he was kidding.

"OK, OK, hang on," I said, rolling my eyes. "Give me a second. I'm trying to think of a really good salad place."

"No," he said, his eyes widening in anticipation. "I mean it. I want a big, sloppy burger."

"Well, then," I said. "If you're sure ... I know just the place."

Which brings us to Pistolero's and the badass hambur-torta, a tower of meat, cheese and just about everything else the chef keeps stocked in the kitchen. When the waitress placed the 6-inch tall burger in front of my father, he smiled, then laughed, then thanked me for taking him to this magical place.

The hambur-torta is not something you eat with your hands, like you might a regular ol' Whataburger. This is like burger Jenga -- one false move and the whole thing comes tumbling down. Might as well just dig in with a fork and the massive serrated steak knife that impales the burger to give it structural integrity.

Location Info

Pistolero's

1517 Westheimer Road, Houston, TX

Category: Restaurant


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