Chow, Baby: Wednesday, December 5, 2002
A D V E R T I S E M E N T
A D V E R T I S E M E N T
Good in Two Tongues

Chow, Baby licked clean the soup spoon and checked its reflection: curly black hair, snapping dark eyes, olive-tinted skin — nope, nope, nope. Puzzled, Chow, Baby finished its avgolemono soup and galaktoboureko (yes, as an appetizer). By the time the waitress at the Ionian Grill brought the souvlaki platter and to-go order of spanakopita, moussaka, and pastitsio, Chow, Baby could no longer stand the suspense: “Why did you ask if I was Greek?” The waitress matter-of-factly answered, “Because your pronunciation is so good.”

My! Chow, Baby had always fancied itself linguistically talented; how nice to have its prowess confirmed. Kudos to reader Harold Rich for turning Chow, Baby on to the Ionian Grill, which opened this summer at 3522 Bluebonnet Circle. Luncheon specials include gyros and souvlaki sandwiches ($5.25-$6.50), Greek salads and soups, and lunch platters of Greek specialties ($6.95-$9.50, including soup or salad, veggie, and rice). Dinner platters run a few dollars more. The Ionian serves a fine baklava, but for Chow, Baby’s $2.25 the dessert of choice is the galaktoboureko: vanilla custard layered in phyllo dough and sprinkled with cinnamon — a not-too-sweet creamy goodness that Chow, Baby could lap up all day long.

Chow, Baby can also happily lap up compliments all day long, and reader “csg csg” obliged with a nice icon-festooned note and a recommendation for Juanito’s, a little taqueria at 4150 Hemphill St. That goes in the “thanks for the reminder” pile, as Chow, Baby hadn’t visited this slice of Little Mexico in a year and a half. Unchanged: the menu board with nary a word in English (yet Chow, Baby’s pronunciation somehow escaped praise); the soft double-corn tortillas, overstuffed with chunks of tender meat (pork, chicken, or beef) dished up from steaming pots; even the prices, with burrito or taco or menudo plates under four bucks. Good and cheap: two of Chow, Baby’s favorite things.

One more thanks-for-the-reminder goes to “yokobelly,” who trumpeted that Oscar’s, just past the 183/377 split at 3400 Denton Hwy, had spiffed up its menu recently. Chow, Baby didn’t find much new other than a fresh coat of paint outside, but then this classy yet family-friendly Mexican restaurant didn’t need much sprucing up. Oscar’s wonderful heavy-cream flan ($2.50) has been a Chow, Baby favorite for years now, and it’s best enjoyed before or after a plate of carne guisada ($10.95), cubes of steak sautéed in Oscar’s special hot sauce. The best accompaniment to Oscar’s gooey cheese enchilada plate ($6.95) is Pablo Hernandez, who on Friday nights renders ’70s American pop standards (“You Are So Beautiful”) on classical Spanish guitar. Even those not as linguistically gifted as Chow, Baby should find the translation fascinating.

You can reach Chow, Baby at chowbaby@fwweekly.com.


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