Houston on the Cheap — with Esther Freedman

Welcome to Discovering Houston on the Cheap with ideas for cheap dates,
cheap meals, & more from
local chefs, media personalities, and folks in local business.

Esther Freedman, cuteheads, founder & designer
{Esther Freedman is a native Houstonian. She is the founder and designer of cuteheads, a clothing and lifestyle brand for children. She is also wife to Doug and mom to one-year-old Naomi.}

Esther Freedman1) Favorite spot for a cheap meal — Buffalo Grille

My family loves Buffalo Grille in West U. Since having our daughter, that’s our regular brunch spot. You can get a gigantic pancake, big enough to feed both you and your kid at a great price. We also love Niko Niko’s, Eatsie Boys, and Hungry’s. They all have great options for both parents and kids, and they don’t mind if the baby leaves a mess behind.

2) Favorite spot for a cheap date — Oishii

We’re lucky to live in a city that offers so many restaurants that won’t break the bank. One of our favorite spots is Oishii, a dive sushi spot (on Richmond) that’s very reasonably priced but still has great quality sushi . AKA is great for sushi with the girls. It has the best reverse happy hour in town. My husband and I love Pondicheri, which offers not only amazing food but also lots of ambiance. Afterward, head to 8th Wonder Brewery’s new tap room for the best beer in town and a very cool vibe.

3) Houston’s Best Kept Secret — parks & more

Houston has some of the best parks, which cost nothing to visit. We’re often at Evergreen Park in Bellaire and Huffington Park in West U. It’s not a secret that our zoo is one of the best in the country, and we try to go fairly frequently. Memorial City Mall, believe it or not, has an indoor carousel and an awesome indoor play area. I’m also excited that my daughter is old enough this year to take advantage of the dozens of splash pads around the city, especially the one at Discovery Green.

4) Best Place to Save Money in Houston — H-E-B

I’m a multiple-grocery-stores-every-week girl, and H-E-B definitely has the lowest prices and a good selection for my family. I don’t shop much for myself these days, but I try to stay on top of when my favorite local boutiques, like Brooke Feather, are having sales. Every year, I buy the holiday shopping card from the American Cancer Society and try to knock out as many wedding and birthday gifts as I can while everything at my favorite stores is on sale.

5) Favorite Houston Festival or Event — Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo

I love the Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo. We never miss that. It was relatively inexpensive for all of us to go, and it provided hours of entertainment. Watching my daughter in the petting zoo and seeing real cows moo for the first time made it worth every penny and then some.

6) My perfect day in Houston would be:

…waking up on one of those rare perfect-weather days and doing a Define Rev class with my husband Doug, followed by brunch with my daughter at Buffalo Grille or the NY Bagel Shop in Meyerland. Then we’d play at one of our favorite parks before her nap. At night, we’d have dinner with friends at a place like CRISP or Coppa Osteria, somewhere we can share good pizza.

photo: Adam Nyholt

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