Talk about the most rootin’, tootin’ holiday event of the year! On December 9th, more than 700 of Houston’s finest yelpers shined their boots, donned denim and moseyed on down to Winter Street Studios for A Holiday Hoedown.
It was a winter soirée with a Texas twist; from hay to hot cider, cowboys and girls were greeted by a smattering array of holiday goodies. Posses of yelpers made way through the venue, sampling winter-inspired cocktails concocted by some of the city’s finest: Avant Garden presented an assortment of sangrias (the chile buzzed to be a fave), newcomer Azul Lounge presented “Conjure Frost” and “Conjure Lemon Drops” featuring Conjure Cognac, benjy’s created "Herbs of Enchantment" made with Enchanted Rock Vodka, guests also warmed up with steaming cups of “Deep Eddy Cider” by Deep Eddy Sweet Tea Vodka, and Baked Apple Collins” by Maker’s Mark. Bacardi Silver, Buffalo Trace-Kentucky Straight Bourbon Whiskey, Rain Organics Vodka, and Houston locals Saint Arnold Brewing Company and SlimRitas also wet the whistles of some very thirsty outlaws.
Following the bevs was a dizzying array of finger lickin’ bites: Chicken Fried Oysters from Branch Water Tavern; brisket and sausage from The Brisket House; jalapeno hushpuppies, gumbo and French bread from Calliope’s Po-boy; Sweet Potato Wontons and mini-tostadas from The Chelsea Grill; Crab Dantons from Danton’s Gulf Coast Kitchen; a variation of burritos from Freebirds World Burrito; an assortment of wraps from Freshii; Tuscan Grilled Chicken with basmati rice prepared by Hungry’s Café & Bistro; vermicelli noodle soup (bun bo hue) and various Vietnamese nibbles from Kim Chau Restaurant; Caprese on Crostini and Pesto Chicken Salad on Baguette by Lucky’s Pub; Texas Pecan Pie and Pesto Party Geez by Pat Greer’s Vegan Kitchen; mini desserts courtesy of Ruggles Café Bakery; and spicy tuna tacos, Tuna On Fire Rolls, Big Bird Rolls, veggie roll, and other sushi wraps from SushiPop. And Kitchen Incubator brought on their team of partners: quail devil eggs and caviar by Chef Sandra Shafer; Argentinean empanadas by Lucia's Especialidades Argentina; Alfarores by Sweets by Belen; holiday cupcakes by Kaleidoscope Cupcakes; Offenbacher Gourmet Fudge, Quiche by Salad Secrets; and Divinity by Divinity Catering. Now that’s something to write home about!
And there was more than just bites and bevs – how about some boot scootin’ beats and more entertainment?! DJ Ceduxion spun non-stop beats as yelpers took over the dance floor. And the Joseph Was Here photo booth created all sorts of silly havoc. Part & Parcel Wrapping Co. brought out the barnyard fun with bails and gift-wrapped décor for added holiday cheer. Also on the scene were a few gals from the Houston Roller Derby and The Wave which helped to shuttle cowboys and girls to and from the Hoedown.
All of this endless excitement was an amazing, record-breaking way to round out the year, support local businesses, and also benefit SEARCH Homeless Services for a “warm & wooly” donation drive. With the help of some very generous attendees, 130 jackets and 44 blankets were collected. (We foresee Santa stuffing yelpers’ stockings with a little somethin’ extra this year!) Don’t forget to catch the paparazzi pics snapped by yelpers David N and Long T, photo booth shots and reviews…
SYOY (see you on Yelp) and in 2011,
Houston Community Manager