Stadium #21
Reliant Stadium
Houston, TX

Indianapolis Colts vs. Houston Texans
Houston Texans Stadium
October 5
, 2008
31 - 27 Loss

 

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Check out my other visit to
Reliant Stadium:

JACvs.HOU-Sept.27,2009
StadiumTour- July 9, 2008

  Stadium Vitals
Built:  2002
Capacity:  71,500
Playing Surface: Natural Grass  
Draft Beer: $8.75       
Hot Dog: $5.00
Stadium Parking: $40.00
Reliant Stadium
Address

One Reliant Park
Houston, TX 77054
Get Directions
 
 


Stadium Review
- The Barbecue Capital of the NFL
Week Five of the NFL regular season took me to Houston, Texas for a game at Reliant stadium - my 21st NFL venue on the Quest for 31. As I inch closer to my goal, with ten
NFL stadiums remaining, we begin the countdown to completion, a culmination of what will be fours years traveling to NFL Stadiums across the country in an effort to understand the home team experience for each NFL franchise.

Anyway, heading back to Houston for the first time since the Hurricane Ike debacle, I
returned determined to have the true down-home Texas experience that I missed the first time through. With a local connection in Houston (my cousin Darlene is a Houston transplant) I had the advantage of her wealth of knowledge on Houston's hidden gems. So when I arrived on Saturday, Darlene had already lined up an exceptional meal at Goode Co., a local hotspot for traditional Texas Barbecue and to round out the evening, we joined in on a St. Anthony's Brewery pub crawl. Houston nightlife is an experience not to be missed, as there are tons of bars all over the city offering a variety of brews, great food, and great people. If visiting from out of town, be sure to spend some time in the local watering holes. You won't be disappointed.

To me, Texas football is all about barbecue, drinkin' beer, and watching a great NFL
football game; and I had a helluva game lined up as the Indianapolis Colts were in town
to lock horns with the Houston Texans. Our day began at 8:00am, just as the parking lots
began to open and Houston Texans Tailgaters were setting up their wares. I'd always
heard that Texans pride themselves on putting meat to flame, but I was blown away by the
quantity and quality of barbecued foodstuffs available all over the parking lot on
gameday. Based on what I saw at Reliant Stadium, Houston Texans fans, in my opinion,
host the best blacktop barbecue in the National Football league. I've been to stadiums
where a couple groups had massive barbecues cooking up all manner of beef, ribs, chicken and pork, but in Houston you don't show up with a little Hibachi and few burgers and call
it a tailgate. In Houston, every Texans Tailgater brings what amounts to a portable
kitchen with them, including all manners of culinary assets in their arsenal. These
custom sauces, dry rubs, smokers, deep fryers, and industrial sized grills complete the
essence of Texas barbecue and really add a true local flavor to the goings on outside
Reliant Stadium. Texan tailgaters, and I mean every tailgater in the lot, trucked in
custom barbecue trailers, they smoked their meats in portable smokers, they dowsed their
creations in homemade barbecue sauce concoctions. Let me say that the variety of flavors
and different cuts of meat is unmatched in the National Football League. Certainly a far
cry from the elementary charcoal briquettes burning the burgers and kosher dogs that
you'll find in some NFL venues. The collective in Houston represent the finest in parking
lot culinarians that the NFL has to offer. A bold statement, but in my experience,
completely true.

Our Tailgating host for the day was Wayne Spake of Al's Koholics Tailgaters. Wayne setup
an impressive spread to round out what was an exemplary taigating experience. We began
the day with Apple Martini's and breakfast tacos at 8am. I was working toward that
necessary base that would be my salvation during an extended day of heavy drinking
(please reference my thoughts on Texas Football above). Soon afterward, Rib tips,
sausages, and barbecued chicken made their way onto my plate and into my palatte, all
washed down with an ice cold lubricator of choice.

So shlockered up on everything Wayne and boys would give us to drink, Darlene and I took
to the lot to see what others had cooking. We stopped in on the spread set out by 5
Kookers and Katering. These fellas had a live DJ, a variety of meats in the smoker
(including a 20 pound pig), and a frozen Margarita Machine on site. I had also seen a
group online that called themselves TexanMojo.com, so we stopped by to shotgun a beer.
The folks at Texanmojo.com sound an airhorn each half hour leading up to gametime to
kickoff a group wide shotgunning of beer. Once to horn sounds everyone in the area pops
the top and sucks down a can. After spending a couple hours with these guys, you almost
forget why you're in town. To locate these guys, look for the Emergency Tailgating
Vehicle built from a converted FedEx truck that serves as their mobile headquarters,
complete with custom Houston Texans paint job. You'll find it in the Yellow Lot.
Definitely worth a visit.

So after some premiere tailgating, we headed for the stadium for a game that shaped up to
be a big one. The Texans took command of the game early on, building a 17-point lead on
the visiting Colts, with touchdowns by Steve Slaton and Andre Johnson. Unfortunately,
with four minutes remaining in the forth quarter and the game hand, Texans Quarterback
Sage Rosenfels gave the game away with inopportune turnovers that allowed the Colts to
post three touchdowns two minutes and escape with an undeserved win. I'm starting to
think the Quest is a curse as my record for home team victories over the last three years
has been abominable. Oh well, onto the next victim.


For more information on the city of Houston, Texas check out my other reviews by clicking on the links below:
     NFL: September 27, 2009 - Jacksonville Jaguars vs. Houston Texans
     NFL: July 9, 2007 - Reliant Stadium Tour

     NBA: Houston Rockets, Houston Toyota Center - General Information

 

City of Houston Local Information  
Top Tourist Attractions:
NASA Johnson Space Center Houston
St. Arnolds Brew Tour

Local Foods:
BBQ, Tex-Mex, Cajun

What They're Drinkin':
St. Arnold's Shiner

Tailgating Hotspots:
Miller Lite Orange Lot - right behind the Astrodome
Miller Lite Yellow Lot - next to practice facility

Local Sports Media:
The Houston Chronicle
Sports Radio 610 - Listen LIVE!


Where To Stay:
Downtown Houston is the place to be. Take advantage of the excellent eateries, beautiful parks, live music and theaters all around you.   I suggest staying at the Scottish Inn or the Houston Grand Plaza hotel.
Popular Bar Districts:
Rice Village (Gingerman, Baker Street, Brian O'Neals, Big Easy,Woodrow's)
Washington Avenue ( Pearl Bar, Drinkery, Reign Lounge, Blue Label 
     Lounge, Citizen Lounge, The Lot, Taps)
Mint Street


Best Restaurants:
Goode Company Barbecue (Texas Barbecue)
Any Pappa's Restaurants (Pappasitos, Pappa's BBQ, Pappadeux's)
Teotihucan Mexican Restaurant

Fan Resources:
Pocket Map of Houston
MetroRail Map
Stadium Policy
Stadium Parking Map

Getting to the Stadium:
Although it is possible to take the MetroRail to the Reliant Park Station to get to the stadium on game day, you're really missing out if you don't drive to Reliant Park for game day tailgating.  Be sure to buy a parking pass in advance, as finding game day parking can be very difficult.
   
Compare Prices for
Houston Texans Tickets Here:


Click on the following links for
Houston Texans ticket availability at each of the top online ticket brokers on the web.  Try each link to find the cheapest NFL ticket prices and compare these against the published "Face Value" ticket price below::

TicketCity.com        StubHub.com
TicketsNow.com     RazorGator.com

 

Yahoo! Maps

Directions to Reliant Stadium from
your home

Ask City

Find a Restaurant
near Reliant Stadium
2008 Houston Texans
"Face Value"
Ticket Prices
 

 
$99.00
Sections 106-107, 126-127

 
$95.00
Sections 104-105,
108-109, 124- 125, 128-129

 
$86.00
Sections 102-103,
110-111, 122- 123, 130-131

 
$70.00
Sections 101, 112-
114, 119-121, 132-134, 139-140
$60.00
Sections 115-118, 135-138
$77.00
Sections 505-511, 531-537

 
$65.00
Sections 501-504, 512-515, 527-530, 538-541, 319-328, 347-356

 
$56.00
Sections 607-610, 633-636
$46.00
Sections 601-606, 611-616, 627-632, 637-642
$50.00
Sections 516-526, 542-552
$35.00
Sections 617-626, 643-652
$30.00
Sections 743-752



           Houston Texans
         2010 NFL Schedule

1 Sunday, 12-Sep IND @ HOU 1:00 PM
2 Sunday, 19-Sep HOU @ WAS 4:15 PM
3 Sunday, 26-Sep DAL @ HOU 1:00 PM
4 Sunday, 3-Oct HOU @ OAK 4:05 PM
5 Sunday, 10-Oct NYG @ HOU 1:00 PM
6 Sunday, 17-Oct KC @ HOU 1:00 PM
7 Bye
8 Monday, 1-Nov HOU @ IND 8:30 PM
9 Sunday, 7-Nov SD @ HOU 1:00 PM
10 Sunday, 14-Nov HOU @ JAC 1:00 PM
11 Sunday, 21-Nov HOU @ NYJ 1:00 PM
12 Sunday, 28-Nov TEN @ HOU 1:00 PM
13 Thursday, 2-Dec HOU @ PHI 8:20 PM
14 Monday, 13-Dec BAL @ HOU 8:30 PM
15 Sunday, 19-Dec HOU @ TEN 1:00 PM
16 Sunday, 26-Dec HOU @ DEN 4:05 PM
17 Sunday, 2-Jan JAC @ HOU 1:00 PM

            NFL Football Stadiums
 


Reliant Stadium Tours - click here for more info

Ticket Prices: $6 Adults, $5 Students/Seniors
Phone Number: 832-667-1842
Areas Covered: Facility, Press Box, Visitor Locker Room, Suite areas, Club Level, Field

Hours: Monday - Thursday 10:00am, 12:00pm, 2:00pm, and 4:00pm
.  Tours meet at the East Club entrance to Reliant Stadium , across from the Reliant AstroDome

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Click for Forecast for 77054 from weatherUSA.net
The First Beer - Don't we look sober?   Reliant Stadium   Professional Smokers
         
   
That's quite a spread   Some serious grilling here   Thanks for the Beer Fellas
         
   
The Steer Skull is a Nice Touch   Big Tex - 2003 Ultimate Texans Fan   Uncle Sam on hand
         
   
5 Kookers and Katering   Bill, Myself, and Darlene   It's Good!
         
   
Those Bastards Choked!   Are you Jaime?   The Melonheads were on Town
         
   
Quite a Facility   Official Houston Texans Mascot Toro   Darlene and I
         
   
Great Game, Unfortunate Outcome   TexanMojo.com, check 'em out!   Al's Koholics Tailgaters
         
     
COMMENTS?
Please feel free to post any suggestions or comments you might have for my journey to
Reliant Stadium, including the following:
 
             
 - Local Hotspots (Bar Districts, Restaurants, Clubs)
               - Local Foods (Traditional Cuisine, Micro Brews)
               - Tailgating Traditions
               - Your Experiences or Helpful Hints

               - If you saw me let me know!
 
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  Thomas the Houston Texans fan from Alvin, Texas
Sent: Sunday, January 17, 2010 12:57 AM
  nice site i met you i think 2 yrs ago with wayne spake and the als koholics orange. now on my own still orange www.cardiactailgaters.webs.com plus are you going to the pro bowl ???

Hey Thomas, I won't be able to make the Pro Bowl this year, but I will be in Miami the next weekend for Super Bowl XLIV.
 
         
         

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