JANUARY 17, 2013
By TED POWERS, Food Editor
Walter Berryhill may have made only one thing, but he made it well. Beginning in 1928, Berryhill sold his famous tamales at the end of River Oaks Boulevard and Montrose Avenue. For more than 40 years, he peddled his tender, moist tamales to throngs of eager eaters. When he retired, he took his cart, tortilla press and the coveted recipe and quietly went home, to the regret of those who loved his corn husk-wrapped specialty. In 1993, with the purchase of the original tamale recipe, the Berryhill name was reborn as a taqueria on Revere St. Those delicious tamales and salsas once again were available and customers lined up to enjoy them.
Besides traditional beef and chicken tamales, Berryhill Baja Grill now serves spinach and corn and bean tamales. If that’s not your thing, you also can get quesadillas with cheese, chicken, beef or, not to be missed, mushroom and poblano peppers. They also serve a wide variety of enchiladas, burritos, chimichangas, fajitas and award-winning fish tacos. Zagat National Survey called them, “Best fish taco ever.” The Houston Press said they were, “Fish tacos of the gods.” As you can see, Berryhill is now a full-service Mexican restaurant.
Wait until you taste their soups. I love corn and poblano soup drizzled with sour cream, but it’s hard to pass up roasted red bell pepper or tortilla soup with sliced avocado. These all are available every day, and everything at Berryhill is made fresh from scratch, including tortillas, salsas and desserts.
My latest dinner began with a frozen Screwdriver, a first for me. It was fabulous! Their frozen margaritas also are excellent. Then, came the famous original fish taco made with tempura fried white fish, red cabbage, special sauce, cilantro and served with black beans and rice. The sauce was wonderful. I asked the chef what was in it, but he wouldn’t give away the big secret. Next was a spinach enchilada made with whole kernel corn and red bell peppers and then a spinach and corn tamale. Take note, at Berryhill, you can order most dishes a la carte or as a combo with rice and beans. So, you can get single orders of most dishes and rice and beans with the combo you choose.
On other visits, I’ve enjoyed taquitos, fried corn tortillas stuffed with chicken, guacamole and pico de gallo; and first-class Berryhill del Mar Fajitas. These beauties come with grilled fish topped with mushrooms, onions, Poblano peppers and cilantro, served on a bed of rice. You also can order angus beef burgers.
Catch this – at Berryhill, breakfast is served all day. There are breakfast tacos, veggie breakfast tacos, migas, spicy huevos hogados, with poached eggs; pancake singles or stacks and more. Dessert? Of course! They have an award-winning tres leches. I had a real taste treat with a pumpkin tres leches.
Berryhill is seriously fresh Mexican food, and they offer full- service catering. They are located at 5303 Bissonnet St., 713-665-8000. Go toberryhillbajagrill.com for other locations.