Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Empire Cafe

The Empire Cafe is one of my favorite places in Houston. It's cosy on the inside, it has a patio that allows well-behaved, non-barking dogs, and it serves a variety of food and drinks.

The Good
  • The Corsica pasta: Creamy goat cheese, fettuccini and a nice marinara sauce.
  • The breadsticks: They come with your salad and pasta and are not too soft, not too crispy — perfect.
  • The little touches: When you order a hot coffee or hot tea, they give you one or two little cookies on the saucer.
  • Happy Hour: Mondays 4 to 7 p.m.; $1 off drinks and a free appetizer.
  • Prices: Reasonable. Last night, dinner and non-alcoholic drinks for three was $38. It's an order-at-the-counter place, so you can choose to give the cashier a tip if you wish.

The Bad

  • The Milano ravioli: Fairly tasteless ravioli drowned in equally tasteless marina sauce.
  • The outside tables can be rusty and the inside ones small and rickety, depending on which one you get.

My Favorite
Besides the cookies with your coffee? It's the large, fading paintings hanging on the walls in the back room.

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