Coast Monthly caught up with acclaimed chef and restaurateur Robert Irvine to get his take on the cuisine scene on the Texas Gulf Coast. The Food Network superstar will bring his larger-than-life personality to the island for the Galveston Island Food & Wine Festival and will perform a live show at The Grand 1894 Opera House.
Q: What is your favorite dish on the Texas coast?
A: “Whenever I’m in Texas, I always seek out barbecue. Ribs, brisket, pulled pork — they’re all my favorites. But I’m also looking forward to some of the great seafood.”
Q: What do you like about our restaurant scene?
A: “I think the Texas dining scene in general will always have a very unique appeal, especially when it comes to blending cuisines such as Tex-Mex.”
Q: The best way to prepare shrimp?
A: “I love to keep it simple when it comes to cooking all types of shrimp, and there are two methods that are my favorite. Sautéing quickly on high heat with grapeseed oil until shrimp are cooked half way, turning the shrimp and turning off the heat to allow the shrimp to finish cooking. This prevents the shrimp from overcooking. I also love to marinate and grill shrimp. I love this method when cooking larger shrimp. Nothing beats slightly charred shrimp from the grill.”
Q: What’s the strangest cuisine you’ve seen on the Texas Coast?
A: “I’ve heard about a restaurant that mixes Gulf Coast cuisine, barbecue and Vietnamese. I’m really curious about that combination.”