Monday, December 3, 2012

Review: The Queen Victoria Pub & Kitchen in Upper Kirby

English Pubs and pseudo English Pubs are a staple all over the world.  The idea is to serve imported and craft beer in a wood and brass environment that echos the Rover's Return from Coronation Street along with American or Canadian approximations of Bangers & Mash, Cottage Pie and Deviled Eggs.  In this case, the Queen Victoria Pub and Kitchen  has an Indian English chef who uses her creative muse to fuse various English and Indian dishes into wonderful experiences for the palate and has worked her way onto an Eater Houston Hot 38 list as a result.  Kudos to Richard Di Virgilio and his wife Shiva for doing such a fabulous job in this.  And before I delve any further, I would like to thank Ollie Hanson for giving me a heads up about this place that had somehow fallen under my notice and corrected this oversight on  my part.

When you enter the Queen Vic, it has a bit of a Coronation Street meets Curry Feel to it--you see great taps and the English pub look, but the subtle hints of Cardamom and Curry drift into your nose as you come in.  There's a chalk board with specials and rare taps nestled behind the bar, along with deviled eggs for those who wish to chow down on a usual British Pub Snack.  The staff is dressed in black, much like a high end bistro, and there are images of Queen Victoria all over, some taken with some artistic licence!

Red and Cherry Wood dominate the scene, somewhat like Kiran's but less like a high end Orient Express style high-level Indian joint, more like a middle class British Pub--which is just fine with me.  There is good food at all strata of places if you know where to look.  I'm a guy with a pair of work boots as well as a pair of Stacy Adams black polished men's shoes.  I can go to any level and find good eats.  And dear Readers, the Queen Vic has VERY GOOD EATS.

Queen's Curry--Scotch Eggs in Curry Masala with Naan
I went and enjoyed a few items off of their lunch menu.  Just FYI--their dinner menu  has some of the same items, but a bit more as well. I had a Queen's Curry (Scotch Egg wrapped in ground lamb in curry masala) with Naan Bread for an appetizer, and an English Burger (In house ground beef blend, homemade B&B pickles, English cheddar, Coleman's mustard, and red onion. Served on oversized toasted English Muffin. Served with house cut "chips", and I elected to add Zoe's bacon $2.00).

First of all the Queen's Curry was warm spicy, not too hot.  The lamb had a nice mix of fennel, curry and other sesasonings that contrasted with the egg.  It all worked well with the Curry Masala--I ended up slicing up the Scotch eggs and wraping them in the Naan bread sort of like a taco.  It was very delicious and would make a good meal all by itself.  The English  Burger is MAGNIFICENT!!! The meat in the burger patty was very juicy-it had a good savoury spice mix which included black pepper, cardamom, curry and a plethora of other spices neither the server nor I were able to fully identify.  This is truly a unique burger that is so delicious and stands out with its melted orange English chedder and the bacon thick & crunchy.  The oversized English muffin is the jewel in the crown of this Burger!  By far one of the bestt burgers I've had in a while.  And as a result of how good it is, it's taking spot #11 on my Top 20 Houston Burgers list in the sidebar.  (Sorry  Five Guys--you're better than any other fast food joint and a lot of other casual chains, but the Queen Victoria has but you at #21!)  I also enjoyed the very crispy house cut chips (fries) on the side, also with a unique seasoning blend, dominated by salt. overall a winner of a meal from start to end.

Report Card for The Queen Victoria Pub & Kitchen:
Interesting rendition of HRH Victoria, DG Regina England
     Queen's Curry: A+
     English Burger: A+
     Speed:  A
     Friendliness: A+
Atmosphere (English Pub with a Touch of India): A
     Dining Area: A
     Bar Area: A
Another Qn. Vic. Pic and a sideboard
converted to a Server Station. 
     Men's Room:  Incomplete
Overall Grade: A

The Queen Victoria Pub and Kitchen is located at:
2712 Richmond Ave (1 block west of Kirby Dr)
Houston, Texas 77098
713 - 533 - 0022

Hours of Operation:
Mondays: 4-11 pm
Tuesday - Friday: 11 am - Midnight
Saturday: 4pm - Midnight
Sunday: 3pm - 11pm

And remember to Eat Happy, Y'all!!!

The Queen Vic Pub & Kitchen on Urbanspoon

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