Monday, January 14, 2013

Mo's Knockout Grill

I'll be honest, I had some skepticism before I showed up here for the simple fact that my roommate Scott recommended it to me as the best gyro in town. It's not that I don't trust Scott, we live together and I think he's a cool guy, it's just one time he fed me "the best egg roll in the world" and I still haven't stopped laughing. In general I think it's a bad idea to take restaurant recommendations from people that you love, because a favorite restaurant is as personal as someone's comfortable underwear and if you don't like them, there goes the friendship. But Scott happens to consume more hummus than the entire nation of Greece, and if I believe anyone's opinions on Mediterranean food it's him.

Let me start out by telling you that Mo's Knockout Grill is a bit of a shack, located at 7918 Kirby. When I think about fine dining in this part of town, I normally think of the Olive Garden a few blocks away (because Olive Garden is delicious and has unlimited soup and salad, not because I'm a food snob). OK but maybe I am a regular snob, because I'll be honest, I looked at this joint and I thought, man am I going to catch tetanus off a toilet seat here. And then I walked in and you know what? I think it has got to be the cleanest looking restaurant I have ever been in. +23 I would have eaten my falafal sandwich off of the ground, I won't lie to you. Well I would have before I walked in, it was kind of muddy outside and I'm not sure what kind of bacteria I brought in on my shoes, I wouldn't consider myself a germaphobe, you guys should see my bathroom, but I do have standards when it comes to eating off of the ground. I'm not sure if it really was super clean, or if it was just the attractive off white tile on the walls and floor and the mirror that I originally thought was a picture of a fresh looking girl, myself, but either way guys I still can't get over it. Do you think that's a strategy I could use, though? Covering things in tile and mirrors to give the perception of cleanliness? Like if I redecorated my bedroom, suddenly you wouldn't be able to see all the piles of clothing and the stacks of books and the ground of Doritos that have lodged themselves into the carpet? I mean it's just a thought, I'll accept alternatives.

In case you were wondering why a Mediterranean restaurant is called "Knockout Grill," it's not that all their dishes are super knockout good, it's because there's some sort of boxing theme going on inside. I'm thinking that back in the old country (I'm extemporizing here, I've never met Mo) our fearless restaurant owner was a plucky street fighter. Yearning to move to America where he could open up the cleanest restaurant Houston had ever seen, he began to earn and save money through his fights. One day a dirty manager came to him and said, "I will give you the rest of the money you need to make it to America; all you need to do is throw this one fight." But our fearless hero shook his strong, brawny head. "No," he said. "I cannot build the cleanest restaurant with dirty money." He turned the man down. The manager, enraged, secretly forced his fighter out and replaced him with the strongest man in the Mediterranean. Mo couldn't back out - his pride was on the line. Instead, he wagered all the money he'd saved on himself and went into the ring. He won that day, and that's how he earned the title "Knockout Mo", and that's how he came to open "Mo's Knockout Grill". It's a beautiful story, full of courage and bravery, and I applaud Mo for it. +17 That's what America is all about - getting repeatedly punched in the face, just to get over here.

If I have one complaint (and I usually do) it's about the parking situation. I'm not sure that Mo's actually has any of their own. As best as I could tell, your two options are to park at the Chevron station to one side (which I did) or at the motel next door. (Can I just ask you what this motel is doing here? Where is it drawing it's occupants? The Med Center, I suppose, is relatively close, as is Reliant, as is Rice University, as is University of Houston, but there are far nicer, far closer options to each of those. It can't be there for having affairs because the parking lot is right on Kirby - maybe not the ritzy part of Kirby but still a part people drive on, you'd be spotted instantly. I can only assume it's a place for people who work at the Med Center, Reliant, Rice University, or University of Houston to have affairs at a place where they won't run into their spouses having affairs; this also explains how sad it looks on the outside.) Look guys I go to college I spend approximately ten hours a week struggling to find a parking spot, despite having paid $300 for a parking spot. The last thing I want is to spend my free time wrapped up in the same endeavor, come on Mo's let's get it together.

Mo's Knockout Grill & Mediterranean Food on Urbanspoon

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