by Dorothy Puch Lillig

I first visited Pampa Grill way back when life was normal in 2019. (Remember 2019?) I found the tiny cafe and market charming and homey, the food was off-the-charts good and plentiful, and the server had the best smile.

These days that smile is behind a mask and a small indoor cafe isn’t necessarily the ideal setup for a restaurant during these times of social distancing but, with some modifications in hours, reservations, takeout, curbside and deliver options, Pampa Grill has done what a lot of local restaurants have had to do — adapt.

Something they haven’t had to alter is the food. And, oh my, let me tell you about the food. Pampa Grill, located at 10111 Hammerly Blvd., serves the best steaks, empanadas, milanesas (fried and breaded chicken or beef) and more.

The family-owned Pampa Grill prides itself on combining top quality gourmet food with great service (I told you — service with a smile!) and affordable prices.

Serving the “best of Argentina,” you really feel transported to another place — ideal in this time of limited travel. Sample a rich provoleta (grilled provolone cheese), along with some Argentinian empanadas and, if you are a red meat fan and have a quarantine partner to dine with, check out their famous parrilladas, which is a selection of meats served on a small grill to keep the meat sizzling and juicy.

According to their website, Pampa Grill intends to be “a place where customers can feel at home, enjoy the best Argentinian food and find the most cherished products from the land of gauchos, tango and unforgettable landscapes.”

While their Spring Branch restaurant may be small in size, the word “pampa” comes from the vast grassy plains of southern South America.

You will find many favorite Argentinian products in their mini-market and, if you’ve been getting to be an expert home chef, they have prime steak cuts in their meat market.

Pampa Grill enhanced their already rigorous cleaning and safety protocols and have been operating at a reduced capacity. In order to help things run smoothly and safely, please call ahead to reserve a table or book a reservation on their website.

Download their menu before you go as reusable menus are not allowed at this time.

Take a peek at the menu and you’ll see why the Houston Press called Pampa Grill “a carnivore’s paradise,” saying: “The best things on the menu here are meat-based: that parrillada, which is a hibachi-style grill of meat delivered to your table, overflowing with nearly every cut of the cow; the sweetbreads and morcilla (blood sausage) I always order as appetizers; the meat-filled empanadas, which are tightly crimped with a fine texture that dances between doughy and flaky; the mozzarella-topped milanesas that are pounded thin and crisply breaded like South American chicken-fried steak.”

The Spring Branch District encourages you to mask up and stay safe at this time and, if you are going to eat out, please consider eating local at one of our amazing restaurants within the District. They have been working hard to give you the safest and tastiest dining experience.

Pampa Grill posted a message to customers upon reopening:

“The decision to open has not been taken lightly, we have reviewed and are carefully following all the guidelines provided … please know that your safety does and will always guide any decision during this unprecedented time.”

Pampa Grill
10111 Hammerly Boulevard
Houston, TX 77080

Pampa Grill is open Wednesday to Saturday noon to 7 p.m. and Sundays noon to 5 p.m.
Be sure to call ahead for a table and curbside pickup. Delivery is available via Grubhub.