Houston Restaurant Weeks now underway

August 11, 2011 3:01:23 PM PDT
More than 125 restaurants are participating in Houston Restaurant Weeks. It's a culinary event that is going on now through the end of August and it benefits the Houston Food Bank.

Fine dining is a great way to enjoy a special evening but it usually comes with a huge price tag. Now for $20 or $35 a person, you can dine for half the price and help the Houston Food Bank.

The court reporters from the Harris County court enjoy dining out, especially after a really long day, and they're also celebrating Houston Restaurants Weeks. It's a month-long event where dozens of Houston's finest restaurants have set up $35 dinners and $20 lunches for the entire month.

"You are talking about an appetizer, you're talking about a meal, you are talking about a dessert; there is no place you can go to enjoy a really, really good meal for $35," diner Cynthia Lee said.

And you are helping the Houston Food Bank; for each participating dinner that is served for Houston Restaurants Week, $5 goes directly to the Houston Food Bank. For every lunch, it's $3.

"Because the Houston Food Bank is able to multiply every dollar we receive into three meals, so that $5 dollar contribution we receive actually turns into $15," said Brian Greene the Houston Food Bank.

Last year, Houston Restaurant Weeks diners contributed more than $585,000. It's been a win-win for the restaurants too; since August is typically the slowest month of the year, Brennan's Executive Sous Chef Javier Lopez they hope to gain new customers.

"Hopefully we get them the next week and the next week after that and we'll get them for Christmas and it's a good thing for us," Lopez said.

An example of $20 lunch at Brennan's includes a peach salad or soup du jour and choice of entrees like gulf coast shrimp and grits, spinach salad or a brined pork tenderloin.

At Ibiza, a $35 dinner includes roasted beets with goat cheese, salmon and vegetables and selection of sorbets. At Damian's, the famous Italian upscale restaurant is participating too with a three-course dinner that includes a classic Italian salad, linguine pasta with shrimp and bread pudding.

For diners, this is a great way to enjoy fine cuisine without paying full price.

"Benefiting a wonderful cause like the Houston Food Bank, so we are really happy that we are able to do it and enjoy good food," dine Elizabeth Keeler said.

"I'd come here whether it's a value meal or not; the fact that it is just a boom," diner Myrna Hargis said.

Dining reservations are required. You can call the restaurant or make your reservations online. For all the participating restarants, click here.

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