Cheap & Good Eats: Top 5 Budget Lunch Spots in Clear Lake


nobi_public_house.jpg
Photo by Troy Fields
The char-grilled pork salad at our No. 1 pick is a homerun.
1. Nobi Public House

Though Nobi may not have been around long, this unexpected gem in the middle of a strip mall has quickly become a fan-favorite. That's because the pub, with its craft brews and Vietnamese-Tex-Mex grub, feels wholeheartedly Houston.

Come for a local pint and a few $2 tacos. Or get a basket of butter garlic wings ($6.50 for 8), a banh mi topped with fried egg ($5.50), or a sriracha-mayo-drizzled hot dog ($6).

If you come with friends (or want nachos for lunch), go ahead and order what is perhaps the most perfect example of Nobi's Vie-Tex-Mex fare, the pork nachos ($6). The crisp triangles of freshly fried flour tortilla are topped with a mess of Vietnamese char-grilled pork, nacho cheese, onions, salsa, and some pickled jalapeño for good measure.

See our other Top 5 Budget Lunch Lists:

Top 5 Budget Lunch Spots in Montrose
Top 5 Budget Lunch Spots in River Oaks
Top 5 Budget Lunch Spots in Midtown
Top 5 Budget Lunch Spots in Upper Kirby
Top 5 Budget Lunch Spots in EaDo
Top 5 Budget Lunch Spots in Rice Village
Top 5 Budget Lunch Spots in the East End
Top 5 Budget Lunch Spots in the Galleria
Top 5 Budget Lunch Spots in Garden Oaks/Oak Forest
Top 5 Budget Lunch Spots in The Woodlands
Top 5 Budget Lunch Spots in Old Downtown
Top 5 Budget Lunch Spots in Pearland
Top 5 Budget Lunch Spots in the Heights
Top 5 Budget Lunch Spots in Lazybrook/Timbergrove

Location Info

Nobi Public House

241 E. NASA Parkway, Webster, TX

Category: Restaurant

Cuisine of India

1212 NASA Parkway, Houston, TX

Category: Restaurant

Abe's Cajun Market

1080 Clear Lake City Blvd., Houston, TX

Category: Restaurant

Mogul

1055 Bay Area Blvd, Houston, TX

Category: Restaurant

Mediterraneo Market & Cafe

18033 Upper Bay Road, Houston, TX

Category: Restaurant

Boondoggle's Pub & Pizzeria

4106 Nasa Road One, Seabrook, TX

Category: Music

Seabrook Classic Cafe

2511 NASA Parkway, Seabrook, TX

Category: Restaurant

My Voice Nation Help
13 comments
Jessamyn Davis
Jessamyn Davis

I was about to praise Nobi but got distracted by the crazy zombie discussion above. Go pork fries!

Wulfe N. Straat
Wulfe N. Straat

Why are there so many zombie movies, television shows and video games nowadays? Is there such a thing as a Zombie Epidemic? Yet, for something that doesn’t exist, zombies scare the living hell out of us, as if there were truth in what we see. In fact, these “entertainments” are proliferating at an unbelievable rate, now accounting for $5 billion per annum worldwide. Why? What is it that our “social subconsciousness” is trying to reveal to us...without actually putting it into words? What is it that we are being warned against? Juxtapose this scene from the Bible to what you’ve seen in every zombie entertainment. You know the scene well, because you were warned as a child. The tormented populace of Sodom come to Lot’s home, banging on his door like the living dead, needing the pure life of another straight man or woman to revitalize the moral decay at the base of their disease. Such was Sodom in its day; such is America today. It’s a fever in their blood. It consumes their every waking hour. Dare to look beyond the smiling face of your gay son or daughter...to the living dead. Homosexuality is a contagion, and you have to stop it...sooner than later. Every morally healthy person is an indictment against the corrupted values of these creatures, who have been touched by this disease. As a consequence, the afflicted cannot abide seeing anyone live Life as it was meant to be, with each of these grotesques committed to destroying the moral alternative to their depraved reality. Are they born with the gene? Or, are they infected with this abominable disease? In other words, can the emotionally weak be “turned” with a love-bite? While seeming to be flighty and gay, these living dead detest what they’ve become, since they are condemned to lurk in the shadows of Life, always on the prowl for fresh meat, needing the flesh of the living to feel alive. And, at every instance, they devour the humanity in those who are unfortunate enough to fall prey to their predations. And then, overnight, a new grotesque is born with the same sick imperative to prey on some other poor unfortunate. Yes, we still love them, despite their new perversion. Yes, we protect them in their affliction. Yes, we cast our votes in support of gay rights. But should we? They’re caricatures of real Life...of Death itself. This is why there are so many zombie movies, television shows and video games nowadays. Because there is such a thing as a Zombie Epidemic. Zombies scare the living hell out of you, as they should, because it is the truth behind the lie that you see and hear “coming out” of the death shrouds of America. This is why these “entertainments” are proliferating at an unbelievable rate, because the contagion is spreading. This is what the world’s “social subconsciousness” is trying to reveal to you in your dream-world of “political correctness.” This is what you are being warned against...because: You are living in a Zombie Epidemic! It is raging all around you! And only you can stop it!

PineBrookWood
PineBrookWood

Abes has good quality food but for "Cajun" it is very watered-down.  Floyd's is much better.


I prefer the food at Wael's for Mediterranean/Lebanese and Angelos for Italian, esp. their pizza. Pho Hoang on Bay Area for Pho and 888 for American and authentic style Chinese.  As far as suburbs go, I've found Clear Lake has a lot of good places to eat, but they are low key and usually overlooked.

johncoby
johncoby

wow you missed this by a mile.  you should consult people who live in clear lake before publishing. Abes? really?

ComicBookGuy
ComicBookGuy

I still like Thai Seafood.  And for Indian there is also Bombay Tadka (although I am not sure that they qualify for the Cheap Lunch as I have not tried their lunch buffet).


That being said, for a cheap lunch I much prefer Nasa Fast Food to Nobi.  Don't get me wrong, Nobi had decent food and a very respectable beer selection, but they aren't really a cheap lunch if you go there for what they are best at... the beer.


Nasa Fast Food has a great menu, and everything on it qualifies for the Cheap Lunch (or even dinner) and everything I have had there is great.  True, no beer, but overall the menu and the food is hands-down better.  As a matter of fact, I just got back from there and a bahn mi and iced tea for $5.00 is both cheap and excellent.

Bruce_Are
Bruce_Are topcommenter

Not a bad list at all. I agree with Cuisine of India, King Chicken, and Nobi.  But Mediterraneo, no way.  And maybe not Abe's but I have nothing against it.  I like your Honorable Mentions.  Other places worth considering would be Rivera's Mex-Sal, Frenchie's, Al Basha, and Chuyo's, in League City. I used to really like Thai Seafood.

Bruce_Are
Bruce_Are topcommenter

@johncoby 

I live in the Clear Lake area and find this list to be pretty good.  And I am one to bitch.  I wouldn't have included Abe's and no way Mediterraneo, but Abe's does help round out the list.

Your criticism would be more valid if you could make some suggestions as to what you think the list should be.

LosNix
LosNix

@ComicBookGuy As someone who misses living on Westheimer near the beltway, Nasa Fast Food makes me a content guy. Srsly great eats for the price, and the owner is always exceptionally nice. I definitely would've dropped these guys in here, probably taking the place of Mediterraneo. 


Mediterraneo- they're not bad... I just don't think they're great. While the market section of the establishment is great, the food is just okay. Mediterranean Chef up the road on Nasa edges them out for cuisine (and comparable "cheap eats' IMHO.

johncoby
johncoby

@Bruce_Are@johncobyColiseum Italian Restaurant. Lunch is a full plate of any combination of italian dishes and bread. I think it is under $7 Been there for decades.


Bay Area Meat Market. Half a chicken for $5.00 or other combinations. Great food and you can walk next door and pick out your meat for dinner.


Frenchies. The lunch sandwich is big enough for two. Been there for decades in a hole in the wall.


Bruce_Are
Bruce_Are topcommenter

@johncoby

I eat lunch at Colosseum because my kids like it. It's cheap and filling but it doesn't belong in the Top 5.  I'd rather eat the chicken at King Chicken than BAMM so no need to include BAMM.  And Frenchie's would be OK but I'd rather go to Angelo's for Italian.  And surely you wouldn't include both Colosseum and Frenchie's in the Top 5.

So I think Brooke did a pretty good job.  She included Cuisine of India and King Chicken.  Any list without those would be lacking.  And Nobi is pretty darn good--I'd put them on the list for having the best hot dog in the Clear Lake area.


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