Spice it up: 3 new places to savor Sichuan fare in Houston

Photo: Jin's Cafe/Yelp

So you're hungry -- and you're ready for some Sichuan food. Good news: we've found the freshest spots to satisfy your appetite. Here are the newest places to check out the next time you're in the mood for the spicy Chinese fare.

Cooking Girl

2400 W. Holcombe Blvd., University Place
Photo: Stanford M./Yelp

Cooking Girl recently opened its doors near the Texas Medical Center. The new space features plenty of greenery, wooden tables and counter seating. This is its second location after the one in Sugar Land.

On the menu, you'll see spicy dishes featuring peppers and peppercorn, including the Billionaire Pork with ginger, Kung Pao Chicken with peanuts and the Colorful Beef with bell peppers and mushrooms. (See the full menu here.)

Cooking Girl has already attracted fans thus far, with a five-star rating out of 12 reviews on Yelp.

Yelper H L., who reviewed it on Aug. 26, wrote, "We had the jelly appetizer, twin pepper chicken and the string beans and eggplant. The chicken dish leaves your mouth numb, so beware. Everything was tasty and service was very good."

Christy G. noted, "The food did not disappoint! The hot diving fish and red noodles are amazing."

Intrigued? Stop in to try it for yourself. Cooking Girl is open from 11 a.m.-3 p.m. and 4-9:30 p.m. daily.

Spicy Girl

3285 Southwest Freeway, Greenway / Upper Kirby Area
Photo: Nia S./Yelp

Spicy Girl is a Sichuan spot, offering noodles, seafood and more.

On the menu, you'll find options like dumplings, fried squid, peppercorn chicken, smoked duck, mango chicken in garlic sauce, Sichuan-style shrimp and more.

Thirsty? Pair your meal with bubble tea like the peach oolong or classic milk. Smoothies and desserts such as cheesecake and mochi are also on offer.

The new restaurant has made a positive impression thus far, boasting a four-star rating on Yelp out of 13 reviews.

Jennifer Y. wrote, "So far everything I've tried here is so excellently flavored --honestly, the best Chinese food I've had in a long time. They do both authentic Chinese as well as Americanized Chinese food."

Mar A. noted, "Great food and really good mango milk tea! Customer service was good as well. Good lunch place."

Head on over to check it out: Spicy Girl is open from 11 a.m.-3 p.m. and 5-10 p.m. on Monday-Thursday, and Sunday and 11 a.m.-3 p.m. and 5-11 p.m. on Friday and Saturday.

Jin's Cafe

9013 Westheimer Road, Mid West
Photo: Jin's Cafe/Yelp

Tucked away in a strip mall, Asian fusion spot Jin's Cafe recently debuted with Sichuan fare and a wide selection of fruit and bubble teas.

The menu offers dishes like boiled beef with chile oil, sesame chicken in the chef's special sauce, pan-fried fish fillet with hot Sichuan sauce, spicy grilled whole tilapia and napa cabbage with diced hot peppers. (See the menu here.)

With a four-star rating out of 21 reviews on Yelp so far, the fresh arrival seems to be a welcome addition to the neighborhood.

Yelper Ell B., who reviewed it on Aug. 19, said, "This place turned out to be much more sophisticated and classy than I expected. The decor is somewhat clean and simple, and the dishware is very modern and fine. They had plenty of vegetarian options, but I was in the mood for a tofu dish, which wasn't on the menu. They were happy to oblige and made me a tasty, spicy, fried tofu dish."

Wendy C. added, "Their portions are huge and all delicious! We got the steamed fish fillet with diced hot peppers, the grilled lamb spare ribs, shrimp and pineapple fried rice and the scallops. The spare ribs are a must try!"

Head on over to check it out: Jin's Cafe is open from 11 a.m.-9:30 p.m. on Monday-Thursday and Sunday, and 11 a.m.-10 p.m. on Friday and Saturday.
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