Friday, September 20, 2013

Ranosh Cafe- Houston's best beef kabobs?

Restaurant- Ranosh Cafe
3402 Fondren Road, Houston, Texas 77064
Buffet or a-la-carte? a-la-carte
Date of visit: 9/19/13

Photo Credit (

UPDATE 8/13/16: I made two trips this year to Ranosh with my family. Though we do not smoke, we enjoyed the food. I ordered the mix grill on the first trip and the beef shish kabab on the second trip. Both tasted great! I would definitely make more trips here by myself if there were to be an area that would be just for those who do not smoke, since neither every person is a smoker nor does everyone like the smell of hookah. Same score, same reason for the point deduction.

============================ORIGINAL POST===============================

Salam/Hello everyone and welcome to my latest review! Today I will be reviewing Ranosh Cafe, a popular hangout spot for people near the Galleria. It was around 9 pm last night and I was waiting for my carpool crew to finish their ISM meeting. All of a sudden, they decided to go here. One of them is a regular there, and that he knows what is best to eat there. At first, I was actually not willing to go because of one thing: hookah. Hookah is an alternative way of smoking that has taken the US by storm. A lot of the people that I know have fallen victim to this. I would always see pictures of them smoking it on Facebook. But what they don't realize is that it is 10 times worse than smoking cigarettes and has a higher risk of lung cancer and a shorter life. I have noticed that people have started judging Mediterranean restaurants based on hookah. As a big Mediterranean food fan from my days in Saudi Arabia, it really saddens me. Even the hookah affects the smell and taste of the food. So from juicy, it tastes like nicotine and tar. Heck, I know non-smokers who have complained about the food tasting like hookah when they were at another Mediterranean restaurant. Only on the condition that the hookah would be nowhere near me, I went with them.

Let The Experience Begin:
The parking lot was FULL. In fact, it was so full that we had to park a few blocks from the actual establishment. There were people actually working at the parking lots and telling people that it was full. Whenever there was room, they would come out and escort the car into a parking spot. There is indoor and patio seating available. The patio was mainly used for people who were smoking hookah. Fortunately, enormous fans were there to make sure that the hookah smoke doesn't affect the customers' food. I am glad that the management knows that there are people who do not do hookah and go just to eat. There were two giant TVs at opposite ends showing the Chiefs vs. Eagles game. The waiters were very friendly! They knew one member of my carpool crew. They were smiling and were willing to let us take our time and pictures. They would always go around the whole patio area AND the inside to make sure that the customers were happy. After around 5 minutes of waiting, we decided to order.

Let's Eat!
Out of the 4 people there, three (including me) ordered the beef shish kabab. The other two got rice as their side, while I got rice and fries. The 4th person ordered a chicken shawarma. We all got water, and two of them got hookah to wait for the food. All of them came with bread, white sauce, chili sauce, fried onions and bell peppers, and ketchup. They had made sure that the smoke would not come near me while I was watching the game and eating the food. Roughly 90% of the people were smoking hookah, but the place did not smell like it thankfully. The pricing was decent. we paid around $45 total, thus making it around $11.25 per person (both tax included). The waiting time was also good at around 19 minutes, considering that there were 4 people at the table.

Let's Eat: The menu is pretty basic, but I am not concerned about that (Photo Credits: my friend's Galaxy SIII)



Sandwiches, Appetizers, Beverages, and Their Special

Shawarma, my plate, and a plate of bread

Beef Shish Kabob

The Verdict:
No wonder one of my carpool crew members is a regular here. The food was great! It definitely did not taste like cigarettes and tar! The beef was cooked perfectly! It was pleasant seeing a Mediterranean restaurant managing to cook their beef perfectly. The rice was also delicious, and so were the fries. The fries were eaten with the white sauce, because eating them with ketchup is too mainstream. This has evolved into one of my favorite combinations of all time. The other guys really liked their food too, and said they would come again if we decide on another trip like this late at night. The only fault was the bread, which was burnt at the bottom. I took a bite and I could only taste charcoal. The food was washed down with water.

Ranosh Cafe is a great place to eat even though there is hookah. The smoke is whisked away by the enormous fans, thus the taste was not obliterated. The portions were perfect for the price of the platter. Just don't burn the bread. Other than that, I will highly recommend this place if you are looking for a place to eat some good food and (for some) hookah.

Service: 10/10 (Friendly, no problems here!)
Food: 9/10 (Point deducted for burnt bread)
Waiting time: 10/10 (19 minutes for 4 people = good)
Total: 29/30 = 96.6% (A) (Highest grade for Mediterranean restaurant yet)
Pricing: $ out of $$$$

Restaurant Information
Ranosh Cafe
3402 Fondren Road, Houston, Texas 77064
Phone: (832) 242-5200
Website: None
Facebook: None
Timings: Mon-Thu & Sun: 11 AM - 12:30 AM; Fri-Sat: 11 AM - 1 AM
Caters: Yes

Feel Free to Comment Below!

Zain Mohammed

1 comment:

  1. Ranosh Cafe is a beautiful garden restaurant, one of the few in Houston that is not a square room. I go for lunch and for coffee and dessert and work outside in the lush gardens to the soothing sound of the water fountains. A special place.