Little Zimm’s had me at hello. After learning the ultra fabulous Zimmerman family was involved, my curiosity began to mount. Um, isn’t it enough for Dad to own La Colombe d’Or? The real question: Is it possible to grow up with the ever so exciting silver spoon, yet still possess the ability to run your own restaurant?
After reading that Steve Zimmerman’s two sons, Mark & Dan, had ventured into this quest alone, my first thoughts were seeing them in action. You can only truly be an expert in the restaurant industry by sticking your feet in… digging them deeply in the grease pit. Being a privileged Zimmerman Jr., would it be, could it be possible?
The spacious patio brings an instant feeling of coziness to the atmosphere. Little Zimm’s is quite small on the inside, with lots of room outside. One side of the patio runs along the pétanque court, with the other side resting on a large brick foundation, with white umbrella covered tables & a fire place.
Zimm’s has a hand out for amateur pétanque humans, which is helpful in every way. This glorious piece of literature states the definition, as well as listing the rules of the game. One must have in their possession a set of metal balls which will be thrown at one wooden ball. This wooden ball is called a cochonnet or bouchon.
Zimm’s website states, “We hope you’ll make one of our favorite childhood pastimes yours on Houston’s only official court. Originating in Provence in the early 1900s, millions of people now enjoy this French version of Italian bocce or English lawn bowling and extremely distant cousin to American horseshoes.”
Inside, the wrap around bar has tables to the side, leaving just enough space for ample walking room. The décor throughout the interior dining room is lavishly chic. An explosion of marble elegantly runs throughout, with chalk boards detailing different messages from the chef.
During my most recent visit, Mom & Dad Zimmerman were sitting at the bar, Dan was working, and Mark arrived a bit later with his birthday friend. The Zimmerman’s are doing something very right. Appearances show a close-knit family with naturally incredible business skills.
Mom Zimmerman is the textbook definition of… classy, and I am not just saying this because she complimented my sassy white winter coat. She opened Zimm’s Martini & Wine Bar down the street, which is tastefully decorated & super trendy.
Dad Zimmerman was present during each visit, making his rounds inside and out. He is incredibly kind and infinitely intriguing. This doting Dad makes it quite obvious he is supportive and tremendously proud of his children.
After the lunch rush ended, Dan sat down to speak with me about Zimm’s. Being the debonair guy that he is, he remained unfazed when asked, “Is there stone crab claw meat on my face?”
The second important question for Dan is about the material girl herself…Madonna. She supposedly stayed at the La Colombe d’Or mansion ten years ago. Dan said this information is true, although he did not have the opportunity to meet her.
Excitingly enough, however, he did meet Bill Cosby and countless other humans with celebrity status. Pictures of different celebrities that have stopped by adorn the walls of La Colombe d’Or. Dan also shared the exciting news that Ted Danson proposed to Mary Steenburgen at La Colombe d’Or. Total Engagement Excitement.
The Zimmerman brothers brought in Chef Jeramie Robison to develop the menu for Little Zimm’s. He previously worked under Chef David Burke at Fishtail in New York City before spending three years at the Mansion of Turtle Creek in Dallas. Um, let us stop for a moment to calculate the status of this chef’s dreaminess… It almost hurt seeing him in person.
As Chef Jeramie walked into the room, the moment instantly became slow motion at its very best. He wasn’t wearing a chef’s coat, oh no, he wore clothes you might find on Andy Roddick just before winning match point at Wimbledon. The kind of clothes that will simply not allow sweat to exist, yet we may dream of it existing… if only for a moment.
Dan continued to discuss Chef Jeramie, stating he is the Executive Chef at La Colombe d’Or, though closely overseeing the kitchen at Zimm’s. Dan & Mark recently began making significant changes at the mansion. The tuxedo clad servers are now wearing a more relaxed uniform to minimize the super stuffy vibe in the hotel’s restaurant.
Before ordering, Dan inquired about my lunch time needs. He recommended starting with oysters, explaining there is no certain amount necessary in ordering. The oysters are $3.50 a piece, being served on a bed of ice, with cocktail sauce & lemon.
The Shrimp Remoulade is absolutely perfect. Mixed with little croutons & served with a side of crackers, this is one fancy appetizer! Our server suggested ordering the Croque Monsieur Hush Puppies, expressing complete & genuine adoration. We had to pass due to the… ham.
After ordering Stone Crab Claws, the realization quickly hit that champion crab claw cracking status will not occur at Zimm’s. After noticing my weakness, an employee quickly slammed the end of an enormous knife over the claws, thus giving me a head start toward regaining my reign.
Ceviche is offered in the chilled seafood section of the menu. After assessing the massive amount of octopus present, overcoming my fear of tentacles & suckers seemed like the best option available. The fish is fresh, with the many other ingredients finishing off this app perfectly.
Large Cold Boiled Shrimp, which are peeled & deveined, are chilly cold & fresh. This app can be ordered as six or twelve. Zimm’s offers several salads. The house salad consists of lettuce, tomato & cucumber in a vinaigrette dressing. Adding shrimp, grilled chicken, or oysters is optional.
My foodie friend could not resist ordering the Long Island Quack. This sandwich consists of confit duck thigh, seasonal fruit preserve & arugula.
Located in the Rich Boys section of the menu, those not wanting to take the quack out of dashing little ducks, have several other options.
The server recommended the Huey Long from the Rich Boys section of the menu, which consists of Cajun spiced BBQ shrimp. This sandwich is fantastic. After requesting a side of the super secret Cajun sauce, it was quickly heated & sent over.
The Rich Boy section is full of sandwich excitement for the carnivore lover in your life… spicy lamb sausage, sautéed beef tenderloin, pulled pork, slow roasted & pulled (yikes) Moroccan leg of lamb, and… ham.
Let us not forget the very last sandwich in this section… Gourmet PBJ. It consists of hazelnut butter & seasonal preserve.
Always on the look out for outstanding desserts, it is highly exciting to see Zimm’s has Praline Bourbon Bread Pudding! This dessert is served hot in a mini skillet. The only thing I would change about this dessert is adding a big scoop of vanilla ice cream on top! After asking, the bartender quickly obliged.
Another delicious dessert at Zimm’s is the Sticky Toffee Apple Pudding. I asked for a scoop of ice cream to be added to this dessert as well. Other desserts offered are Panna Cotta or Cioccolato Gelato topped with espresso.
Zimm’s Little Deck promises to be a great success with the business savvy brothers, Mark & Dan, working at the core. Following in Dad’s footsteps appears to be an obtainable goal… Success is inevitable.
FIVE: High 5!
FOUR: Please & Thank You
TWO: Double Wow
ONE: Wow + Ouch = Wouch
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