This month we get a glimpse into the mind of our own The Drunken Diva. Jamie Alvear. You can always count on her to have the inside scoop on the best new cocktail in town. Her friendly smile and mixed drink savvy is why we're so glad to have her as part of HFBC! Her blog is jam packed with the inside scoop on some of the best Houston restaurants. Check out our Q&A to see what her favorite local hidden gem is!
What made you fall in love with food?
I think I was a foodie, before the term foodie became popular. When I was young, I would sit in my grandmother's kitchen watching her cook mole, fideo, and homemade tortillas. I always had a passion for cooking and had quite the collection of Bon Appétit magazines. Many people learn to cook only what they grow up eating, but I would try just about anything. If I had a great dish somewhere, I would do my best to replicate it. I had lots of successes and many failures. As I got older and started to travel more, I made it a point to eat local and experience the flavors of each city I visited. For me, food is life - it nourishes the body, soul, and mind.
Who is your biggest culinary inspiration?
Anthony Bourdain is my idol. I can only dream about having his mastery of language and the ability to bring a place to life with just his words. His travels and commentary are truly inspirational. He has made several appearances in Houston recently and sadly I was not able to catch a glimpse. I would to love to buy him a drink and just shoot the breeze. #LifeGoals
What is your favorite secret spot in town?
My secret spot is Tampico Seafood on Airline. They have the best shrimp cocktails and Micheladas in town. My favorite thing to get there is the Redfish a la Plancha. It's available by the pound at market price. The fish is perfectly seasoned and grilled whole. You can eat it by itself or top it with grilled scallops and shrimp. It's served at your table with a giant pile of fried rice. It's muy delicioso!
Top 3 favorite cocktails?
Wow, that's a tough one. I do love to drink and Houston has an amazing bar scene with so many talented mixologists. I am a huge fan of spicy drinks and house infused liquors. The Hard Sun from Caracol is a really great cocktail. It has Sotol Blanco, St. Germaine, Cava, Passion fruit syrup, and a jalapeño-coriander ice cube. As the ice cube melts, the drink gets spicier. The Bacon Maple Manhattan from Hearsay Gastro Lounge took this classic drink to another level with the addition of smoky bacon infused bourbon and crispy strips of bacon. I'm normally not a fan of grapefruit juice in my drinks, but Harold's Tap Room made a believer out of me. Their Paloma included a pepper and mango infused tequila and a splash of grapefruit soda. It is the perfect summer cocktail.
What is your foodie goal for the summer?
This summer I'd like to research web designers to help give my blog a little more pizzazz. I want to continue to work on branding myself and I'm also seeking out freelance writing opportunities. In between all that, I do want to pay a visit to some local breweries and a few new bars. On my list are 8th Wonder, 11 Below Brewing Company, Canard, and Sidebar.
You can always count on Jamie to have the latest scoop on the food happenings in town. Check out her recap of this year's Houston BBQ Festival!