Tuesday, February 18, 2014

b4-u-eat.com - RIP

Houston's pioneering user restaurant review website has closed down.  Here's what you get when you click on the link.

Sad to see it go, but they hadn't posted any new user reviews since late November and even then they were a month behind posting what had been submitted.

I still used it regularly.  Its system of classifying restaurants by type of cuisine and part of town was much easier to use than Yelp! and its listing of new places and closures was worth checking on a regular basis.  Jay Francis' early guide to ethnic eats in Houston was a much consulted resource for me when I was just getting started exploring this city.

I submitted lots of new restaurant listings and closures over the years and always got a nice response from Harry or Jane, usually within hours, and sometimes a little chat would ensue as we shared our enthusiasm for Houston's dining scene.  Contrast that with Urbanspoon which took 6 weeks to list a new restaurant I submitted and got it wrong. 

I kind of wish they'd leave the data base up for a while at least (obviously it would get dated and useless over time).  But, on the other hand, there are some old reviews of mine that I'm glad to see gone.

I'm sure some of the other sites with actual paid reporters will be able to secure an interview and supply some details, but best wishes to Harry and Jane.

Happy eating, Bon Appetit, Buon Apetito, Smaklig Måltid you two.

Monday, February 3, 2014

Palm India Restaurant/Kerala Kitchen - Olive's Pizza

732 Murphy Rd., Stafford

There have been big changes here.  Vacant spaces on either side have been taken over and the dining area expanded to about four times the previous size.  Some paint has been applied along with a few touches of decor and while the place is not posh it is a lot more inviting for dine-in.  It is still counter service.

There is a menu board of the daily offerings of dishes from Kerala but there is also a permanent menu board for pizza on one end of the counter.  There are typical toppings plus some 'premier' toppings including Butter Chicken, Chicken Tikka and Paneer.

Here's my previous report on Kerala Kitchen from two years ago.