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Lunch » Tags » Wine » Reviews » Houston's (Manhattan Beach) » User review


a restaurant in Manhattan Beach, CA. Part of the Houston's chain of restaurants.

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what i would want my own kitchen to be like if i ever cooked

  • Mar 26, 2010

I eat here a lot because it is so close to my office.  I love the food, but i also love the way the place runs.  It's so efficient.  A well oiled machine. 

I take a lot of people there for business meetings, so I've answer the question, "so what's good??" quite a few times.  Answer: everything is good, but since you can't have it all... here's a list to help you focus.

Menu Tips:

1.  Prime Rib French Dip Sandwich.  This is the best french dip sandwich I've ever had... hands down.  If you are contemplating getting, just do it, and you can thank me later.  I have one friend in fact, @JeffWilson,  who has been to Houston's say 50 times and he has never had anything other than the French Dip.  It's that good.

2.  Ribs.  I feel like i have to put it down because they are great, but i rarely get them.

3.  Mexico City Soup.  This is only available on Wednesdays and because of that you will find me at Houstons most Wednesdays.  It's a chicken broth with fresh vegetables, chicken, rice and cheese.  It is un-b-lievable.

4.  Burger.  When i crave a burger and want to drop $15 i go here to get one.  My cheap burger place is In-N-Out for a reference point.  I don't eat the burger often, but when i do, it reminds me that it's one of the best ever.  No frills... just straight up tasty burger.

5.  Spicy Thai Noodle Salad.  This comes with either steak or chicken and both are great.  This is my recent go to item.  It is PACKED with flavor.  You crave it later... a sign of truly good food.

6.  Grilled fish.  this is healthy and one of my frequent orders.  they normally have salmon and trout and then mix in a few others occasionally.  My personal favorites would be the swordfish or the halibut with the "firecracker" sauce. 

7.  Desserts.  Try them all... they are sick.  But the key lime pie when available is a favorite.  Due in part to Ken Sorosky @kjmedia's review on the Houston's Key Lime Pie

8.  Wine List.  This is my favorite wine list in the area.  It's not extensive, but it covers all the bases.  What i like most.  It is so reasonable priced.  I have trouble ordering bottles at other restaurants because i compare the prices to Houston's every time and it's normally 40-50% cheaper than other restaurants.  Also, they don't have corkage fee if you want to bring your own bottle.

Tips on getting a table:  They don't normally take reservations, so typically there is a long wait during peak times.  Lunches earlier in the week aren't too bad but later in the week can be brutal.  For lunch if you show up at noon, you are going to be trouble because the place will be fully seated by those who know how crowded it gets.  Either show up at 11:45 to be one of the first people seated, or after 1:30 so the wait won't be too bad.  For dinner... good luck.  I usually fight for a seat in the bar, but that's sometimes a battle!

Best day to go:  Wednesday because that's Mexico City Soup day and that's my personal favorite.  Other soups:  Monday - Spicy Red Bean/Rice/Sausage (spicy and good... very filling); Tuesday - Tortilla Soup (very good... this would be my second favorite); Wednesday - Mexico City Soup; Thursday - Tortilla (again); Friday - Clam Chowder (never had it); Saturday - Firehouse Chili (not bad, but rarely had it); Sunday - Onion Soup (not bad but i never go on Sunday for it) It's embarrassing, but i just recited all those soups from memory. 


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March 31, 2010
It's been said: the way to a man's heart is... No wonder you can memorize it! ;-)
March 27, 2010
"It's embarrassing, but i just recited all those soups from memory." AMAZING! I can't believe I haven't been to Houston's yet. I need to put it on my to-do list! Everything you wrote out sounds great....plus I heard the veggie burger is awesome!
March 26, 2010
I too LOVE the ribs at Houston's but like you, can't get them that often... they put me down for the count! But soooo good.
More Houston's (Manhattan Beach) reviews
Quick Tip by . May 06, 2010
Fantastic food! Try the tuna/mango sushi roll! Soy paper, tuna, mango, jalapeno... Winner.
Quick Tip by . March 30, 2010
posted in MBlocal
2 words... Prime Rib! Okay 2 more... French Dip!!!
Quick Tip by . March 30, 2010
posted in MBlocal
SUCH fresh, quality food! makes me realize how key ingredients are. great variety of perfectly prepared veggies.
Quick Tip by . March 14, 2010
posted in MBlocal
Most consistently good restaurant in town (& just about anywhere). Rarely misses the mark. Surprisingly good sushi too. Thai Tuna Roll. Mmmm
Quick Tip by . March 07, 2010
posted in MBlocal
A solid and always dependable restaurant. Consistently good service and reliable food. From the spinach dip start through the key lime pie..
Quick Tip by . March 05, 2010
posted in MBlocal
I'm not a fan of most "chain restaurants" but Houston's is different. Food is consistent, fresh, seasonal and never frozen. Great thai salad
Quick Tip by . March 04, 2010
Best damn French Dip sandwich I've ever had... made from their awesome Prime Rib apparently
Quick Tip by . March 04, 2010
posted in MBlocal
i eat lunch here all the time. and dinner too sometimes. i know the menu better than most of the staff. it's embarrassing. review coming
About the reviewer
J.R. Johnson ()
Ranked #31
If you're looking for some more company related stuff about me... it's on my bio page here.      Also, here's a family surf video from our recent wedding. Family = good … more
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Address: 1550 Rosecrans Ave Suite A Manhattan Beach, CA 90266
Phone: (310) 643-7211
Hours: Mon-Sun 11 a.m. - 10 p.m.

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