Big Red Cock (BRC)

BRC Gastropub

519 Shepherd Dr  Houston, TX 77007
(713) 861-2233

http://www.brcgastropub.com

Rating: 8

Aaron and I fell in love with BRC when it opened a couple years ago. We love the warm atmosphere, the vintage wallpaper, the double entendre, and the quality variety of inexpensive beer here. We also love the arterie clogging, yet artfully done food. BRC expanded their menu recently…for better or worse. It’s a great place to go when you want to go somewhere fun, not fancy, but at the same time not a hole in the wall.

My apologies for the terrible pictures. It was SUPER dark in there!

He ate:  Their beer selection is very unique, and they are working with Karbach Brewery (a local brewery Amy and I took a tour of and we’re big fans) so you can get a lot of Karbach beers that aren’t available elsewhere, even on the brewery tour. The waiters are always great at recommending beers!

She ate: I have mixed feelings about BRC. I like the beer selection. The wine selection is…ok. Somewhat limited. They have no hard liquor, so you can’t get cocktails, which means if I don’t feel like getting a beer, I’m kind of SOL. They have red and white sangrias, both of which are meh. Their food is great if you’re drunk and don’t feel like eating crap…or if you’ve been good all week and wanted a calorie splurge. We almost always get the cheddar biscuits with bacon jam, and that, my friends, is the fucking BOMB DOT COM. I hate to use a dated phrase like that but hell, I’m corny so I’m doing it. Even the time when Aaron managed to pierce the toast (Birdcage reference!) and splatter the entire content of bacon jam on my brand new WHITE DRESS, I wasn’t mad and told him worse things can happen to a girl then having sweet sweet bacon nectar on my dress. I then proceeded to go to the bathroom to lick myself clean, cat style.

We shared the Fries & Misc., which was described as “Poutine St. Baconry- Crisp Fries, Pulled Pork Shortrib, Mushroom Pan Gravy, Chile con Queso:”

He ate: I thought the fries were only ok. They were a little bit bland, which was a disappointment.

She ate: I thought the fries were only okay as well. Our waiter really pushed for adding the local egg on top, but since the yolk wasn’t runny, it kind of missed the point of getting the egg on a slobbering mess of cheesy fries and pulled pork. BRC is known for the ridiculousness of portions and fried-ness, but at the same time making the food completely adorable and somewhat cartoony. I remember the time Aaron got a bbq brisket/fried hot dog (you read that right) sandwich, it came on a small-ish bun with said brisket and fried hot dog slices, with an onion ring IN the sandwich that was bigger than the two buns combined. These kind of sandwiches set the bar high for the rest of the menu, so when we got fries that were similar to McDonalds fries (which, by the way, I love, but don’t really need to pay $9 for), queso that was probably not as good as Taco Cabana queso (this is the bar I hold for queso, which surprisingly is not that low. The only queso I like better than TC queso is at Xuco Xicana), pulled pork that was not as good as the ones on the nachos from Twin Peaks, topped with an overcooked egg…well, we weren’t exactly excited.

Aaron got the sliders of the day, which on Wednesdays is the Philly Cheese Steak Burger–Grilled Onion-Mushrooms, Ketchup, Cherry Pepper Relish, American Cheese:

He ate:  I was not a fan of my sliders because they were too spicy, but that’s a subjective thing. Even though I was not a huge fan of the food that night, I still like BRC. They are always solid, even though they are changing things around a bit. It was neither good nor bad.

I, in an effort to be healthy (bad idea to do this at BRC, as even their salads either have fried chicken or is basically a burger without the buns) got the Planters (Mushroom, Cherry Tomato & Onion Skewers, spaghetti squash w/tomato gravy, arugula salad):

She ate: Like I said in the beginning of this post, I was trying to be healthy as it was a Wednesday, not a splurge-on-the-weekend meal. I opted for the Planters plate. The arugula salad was very good. It was a simple mix of young arugula leaves and halved cherry tomatoes, drizzled with olive oil and sea salt. It was a bit too oily for my taste but still very edible. The grilled veggies were…what grilled veggies are. Not bad and not great. There were some mushrooms, red bell peppers, and onions. The spaghetti squash with tomato sauce was a nice filling part of the meal. I liked this plate because it feels like it has a beginning, middle, and end—salad, side, entree. This was probably the healthiest item on the menu. Other “healthy” options were turkey sandwich, but they don’t have wheat toast, or you could get the market fish, but our waiter said it’s topped with butter sauce so…well there goes that.

All in all, I still love the BRC…but next time I’ll remember to come here only on splurge nights. Their mac n’ cheese is to die for, as well as their grilled cheese sandwich. I’m also very curious about their Family Dinner Party (8-12 people), which is Whole Roasted Black Hills Suckling Pig – Naturally Raised warm maple syrup, butter, ½ chicken fried steak, gravy, choice of 3 sides. Shared between just the two of us, of course. I would also love to try the Big Ass Breakfast: 3 eggs, hash browns, bacon, patty sausage, waffle, warm maple syrup, butter, ½ chicken fried steak, gravy. I told Aaron this and he asked “but of course you will also then order the other 1/2 of the chicken fried steak, right?”

I knew there was a reason I’ve kept him around!

tl; dr: Get the mac n cheese and cheddar biscuits with bacon jam. Ask the waiter for beer recs, they’re always spot on. Don’t bother eating anything healthy.

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