Chef Roshni Gurnani’s Guide to Houston
The busy chef opens up her little black book
Though Roshni Gurnani, the newly-appointed chef at Hotel Derek’s Revolve Kitchen+Bar, spends most of her time in the kitchen whipping up globally-inspired, from-scratch creations (like her tamarind agave braised ribs and Indi-Tex lamb burger), she equally loves spending her free time hanging out in her home town. Below, Gurnani shares her favorite things to do and best places to eat and drink in Houston.
Things to Do
Definitely set a day aside for NASA; Houston is the “Space City,” after all. It is about an hour outside Houston, but worth the drive. Close to NASA is Kemah boardwalk, a fun place to eat, catch some rides, watch the occasional fireworks display over the water, and just enjoy the evening. Within the city I recommend Discovery Green, which hosts a large variety of entertainment and attractions throughout the year, including an ice rink with skyscraper views during the winter season. The Houston Aquarium, with the iconic ferris wheel, features themed exhibits like “Louisiana Swamp,” “Shipwreck,” and “Sunken Temple.”
Places to Eat and Drink
Houston is a melting pot of cultures and food. For the best Asian dumplings, check out HK Dumplings in Chinatown. MF sushi in the museum district is a little pricey, but worth it. The best happy hour sushi is Oishi in the Galleria area. It’s the best bang for your buck. You can’t come to Houston without authentic BBQ: Killen’s and Hickory Hollow are two of my favorite spots. For good Indian food, I recommend Himalaya’s. It’s a BYOB little dive that serves the best goat curry, hands down. And for a vegetarian feast, try Shir Balaji Bhavan. For the best scratch-made, globally-inspired cuisine, go to Revolve Kitchen + Bar at Hotel Derek, of course – even if it’s just for a nibble and a cocktail. This edgy Houston boutique hotel really has it all. And for a night out on the town, a couple of my favorite pubs are Queen Vic and Red Lion. Both are British style pubs, serving great beers on tap and a cozy casual atmosphere.
Places to Shop
The Galleria is a mall that offers designer brand stores, as well as national department stores. If you are looking for more boutique style shopping, Highland Village and its neighbor River Oaks District are swanky and top-notch shopping destinations, with stores like Dior, Cartier, Moncler, and more. All three of these shopping centers are a stones throw away from Hotel Derek.