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  1. I had the pleasure of dining at Texas' #1 steakhouse (according to Texas Monthly magazine) last week, Pappas Bros. in Houston. The Pappas family is a powerhouse in Texas dining, with hundreds of chain restaurants incorporating the name: Pappadeaux Seafood, Pappasitos Cantina, Pappas Burgers, etc. Surprisingly, all of the restaurants are consistently good. Pappas Bros. Steakhouse has one location in Houston, and one in Dallas. The clientele was a mix of businessmen and families (how I love to see small children chowing down on beef!), and as a throwback to the old school Texas businessman, our table featured a working phone on the table, which was kind of odd, but it didn't take up as much room as I feared it would. My husband started his dinner with shrimp remoulade (and as a native Houstonian, this boy has eaten quite a bit of remoulade), and declared it delicious. My mother-in-law and I chose to start with the soup of the day, a delightfully creamy with just a touch of spice shrimp bisque. I drank every bit, and then used a bit of warm bread to scoop up the rest (they actually replaced our bread at one point even though there was quite a bit left in the basket because it was no longer warm). Most of their beef is dry-aged in house in house for about a month, with the exception of the filets, which are wet-aged. The filets come in various sizes, and I chose the 8 oz. Side dishes for our meal were the creamed spinach and the potatoes au gratin (special vegetable of the day). The one slightly unfortunate thing was that they tried to convince us that there meat temperatures were cooler than other places. I ordered my filet medium rare and that's what I got. My husband, who usually orders medium rare, was talked into ordering his strip medium (with a warm red center) and got, well, medium with a pink center. No matter, as he still ate it. The wine selection was overwhelming, and my father-in-law asked the sommellier to bring us over a bottle of something in his price range, and she chose a wonderful California Central Coast cabernet, which we loved. Three of us ordered desserts, which were gigantic. They were good, but not great, and none of us even came close to finishing them. I enjoyed my meal very much, but here's the thing...last time I ate at Ray's the Classics, the food was so good I was almost moved to tears. No tears at Pappas, but still worth it.
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