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Galveston Island: Eats

Galveston Island BaconSome people take photos of their kids or loved ones to fondly remember a vacation. Us? We take pics of our food. Sad, but true. We can tell you about any meal we had on any vacation for the past ten years. It’s how we roll.

So, of course, we have a few favorite places in Galveston to share with you. One was a recommendation from a patron at Third Coast, and boy are we glad we listened. Just a block and a half from our hotel, Tremont House, is an unassuming little place called El Jardin And they have some killer breakfast tacos. But skip all the choices and order The #3 Surprise (pictured). For just $3.50, get a burrito stuffed with bacon, eggs, cheese, potatoes, beans and carne guisada. One is enough, but you’ll want two or three. This place was half underwater after Hurricane Ike, but we’re glad they persevered.

Galveston Island Shrimp KissAt no fewer than six places in Galveston we saw “Shrimp Kiss”  on the menu. We finally broke down during our happy hour at Rum Shack (half price, no less) and Holy Schamoly. All we can say is try these wherever you find them. Shrimp, wrapped in bacon, stuffed with jalapeños and cheese then deep-fried and served with ranch dressing. Could there be a more perfect combination? Heart-healthy, they’re not, but they were so delicious we even considered eating the tails. But that was probalby the frozen Mojitos talking.

Galveston Island ShrimpIf you want to experience one of Galveston’s best fine-dining spots without the expense of dinnertime prices (or the requirement to wear pants), you simply must add Rudy and Paco to your list. Innovative dishes with a South and Central American twist feature fresh seafood right out of the Gulf, as well as steaks and other fantastic dishes. Empanadas were fantastic, crab cakes among the best we’ve eaten, desserts were stellar, but the waiter-recommended Shrimp in Garlic Sauce (pictured) stole the show. In fact, we like Rudy and Paco so much, we might just go at dinner next time, even though it means covering up our sexy, sexy legs.

Galveston Island CrabGalveston Island institution Gaido’s Famous Seafood Restaurant is also celebrating its 100-year anniversary in 2011. That’s more crabs than backstage at a Chippendale’s show. But it’s no wonder this place has been around for a century. It has some amazing seafood and impeccable service. If you leave here hungry, there’s something wrong with you in the head. Everything is fresh and plentiful, but we couldn’t resist the Crab Cheesecake appetizer and the Premium Jumbo Gulf Shrimp (Fried, of course) for our main entrée. We threw in a salad just to have something green.

Food in Galveston is worth the drive (or flight) alone, especially for seafood lovers. But there’s a little something for everyone, we promise.


All Photos by Rod Orta, except Gaido’s exterior shot.