Alex R Hernandez Jr - September 2019

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TEXAS TRIAL LAWYERS REVIEW

SEPTEMBER 2019

SAN ANTONIO | AUSTIN | EDINBURG | HOUSTON | LAREDO | DALLAS | EL PASO | CORPUS CHRISTI

A Taste of Home

Preserving Texan Flavors

One of the best parts of my job is getting to travel all over Texas. This state has so much to offer in terms of scenery, culture, and food. Just getting to know the different styles of Texas cooking can feel like a journey in itself. But, as much as exploring new flavors can be an experience, there really is no taste like home. Being from Port Lavaca, seafood is always going to be my top pick when it comes to where to eat. From Corpus Christi to Port Arthur, you can’t beat the flavors you’ll find on the Gulf — let Austin and Dallas keep their barbecue and Tex-Mex dishes. As great as these may taste, I can’t go very long without fresh fish and Cajun spices. Living on the Gulf, you can’t really afford to have a favorite dish. It really matters what the catch of the day is and which sea-life is in season. I prefer this; it keeps things from getting bland. Our flavors in this part of the country really do shift with the tides. That being said, I do have some old standbys I’m always more than happy to return to. Gumbo is chief among these. It’s hard to say no to a spicy bowl of shellfish, peppers, rice, and sausage regardless of whatever else is on the menu. And so many recipes exist — there’s almost no wrong way to do gumbo. I say “almost” because a few places serve the dish cold. I’ve taken many tough cases as a lawyer, but chilled gumbo is one crime I could never bring myself to defend.

I have one caveat when it comes to Gulf food. As strange as it is to admit, I’m not a fan of oysters.

Yes, it’s what most people come to the

Texas coast to try, but the flavor and texture just aren’t for me. Still, when they have other options on the menu, few restaurants can top a homegrown oyster bar. I don’t eat out often, but when I do, I like to keep it local. It’s the best way to get those real, authentic south Texas flavors. In Corpus Christi, for example, I love to swing by Waterstreet oyster bar. Sure, I never order their specialty, but,

between their shrimp offerings and mesquite-grilled catch of the day, I always find something delicious.

Of course, there’s always going to be rivalries between which food is the most “Texan,” and everyone has their favorites. But, even if you’re a diehard barbecue fan, I think we can all agree that food has a real power to bring people together. We’re lucky to have such a diverse heritage of flavors and cooking styles all packed into the Lone Star State. By eating local and passing on our own recipes to our kids, we can keep these proud traditions alive. –Alex R. Hernandez Jr.

When it comes to shellfish, it’s hard to beat The Boiling Pot in Rockport. Located along Fulton Beach, this is your classic, sandy beach shack complete with palm trees and outdoor dining. Don’t let the humble exterior fool you; their crab and crawfish are some of the best you’ll find outside of New Orleans.

“It’s hard to say no to a spicy bowl of shellfish, peppers, rice, and sausage ... ”

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