Blog - Page 5 of 6 - Cyclone Anaya's Mexican Restaurant

Light Done Right!

Summer is HERE! Start the season off right with these healthy (& swimsuit friendly) options. Indulge in our flavorful yet light salads, soups, ceviche, & fish tacos. Sip on a skinny margarita and a guiltless mojito – Since they’re skinny, you can enjoy both! Light is done right at Cyclone’s!

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Photos top to bottom & left to right:

Pozole, Shrimp Salad, Seafood Ceviche,Skinny Margarita, Guiltless Mango Pineapple Fusion Mojito, Skinny Mini Shot, Mexican Chopped Salad, Mixed Green Salad, & Fish Tacos

New Gold Patron: Cyclone Anaya’s Mexican Kitchen


Last Thursday, May 16th 2013, Cyclone Anaya’s Mexican Kitchen was inducted into the Greater Heights Area Chamber of Commerce. After a ribbon cutting, Cyclone’s (@ 1710 Durham Drive) was officially named a Gold Patron Member of the Chamber!

Owner Rico Valencia and his sister, Vienna Valencia Molder, were born and raised in the Greater Heights Area – they consider the area ‘near and dear to their hearts’. We couldn’t be more proud to be a Chamber member and will continue to better service the community through our involvement!

About the Chamber – Today, the Heights Chamber helps business owners who want to do business in the greater Heights area by providing education, business support and referral opportunities so they are empowered to grow their business. Through monthly breakfast presentations, luncheons, expositions and other events, the Chamber works to develop local commerce. (Source:

Green Galore!

St. Patricks’s Day, Americanized, is the day of leprechauns, shamrocks, and green galore. Basically, aside from Irish religious culture and history (no disrespect!), it is an excuse to celebrate and drink green beer margaritas! Thank you Ireland.

Yesterday, my dad and I had the privilege to get in the spirit early. We indulged in green chicken enchiladas and perhaps a “frozen shamrock” or two – in the name of Irishness, of course! Take it from us, St. Patty’s Day with Cyclone Anaya’s flare is definitely the way to go.


This Saturday & Sunday (March 16th & 17th) we will be doing green Chips, Beer, Margaritas and Chicken Enchiladas at all Cyclone Anaya’s Mexican Kitchen locations.

March 2013: This or That, Chef Edition.


Chef Jason Gould: Cholula, Tabasco is too bitter to me.



I can never decide between these, so I always get both.



Always frozen, it is not that I don’t enjoy margaritas on the rocks…I just drink them way too quick!


BEANS-4Black refried. I prefer the rich flavor. 


tortillas-5Depends on the dish. For tacos I prefer corn, but when eating an entree I prefer flour.


February 2013: Chef’s Corner

jason-gould-chef-blog-header Jason_Bio_CollageJason Gould joined the Cyclone Anaya’s family in January 2010 as the Research and Development Chef. He works closely with the founder’s son, Rico Valencia, in continuing the traditions of the Cyclone Anaya’s Mexican Kitchen menu as well as creating new ones. A native of Australia, Gould brings 20 years of dedicated, specialty restaurant experience from his native country, as well as the United Kingdom, to the venture.

In 1991, after four years of study, Gould received his Certificate of Apprenticeship, Cookery, from Dandenong College in Australia. His career began in a variety of kitchen posts at respected restaurants throughout the country. Most notably, he worked at the acclaimed Michelin-rated Mirabelle restaurant in London, where he served as sous chef under famed Chef Marco Pierre White.

In 2001, he ended a successful stint as chef de partie at a five-star French restaurant in Tyrol, Austria’s Vital Dorint Royal Hotel, to dip his hand in the kitchens of New York City. However, career opportunities proved to be scarce in the wake of 9/11 and Gould would later regroup in Houston, where he had several relatives. Driving down Montrose Boulevard, Aries caught his eye, resulting in an unannounced visit and near immediate hire. Gould served as chef de cuisine for over two years at Aries, receiving widespread praise by both critics and gourmands alike.

In July of 2005, Gould became the chef and co-owner of Gravitas, a modern bistro in Houston’s historic Fourth Ward/Midtown area. The restaurant and lounge featured classic, hearty fare interpreted in the French style. Gravitas was selected as New Restaurant of the Year in 2005 by Texas Monthly. In 2006 Gould was named Up-and-Coming Chef of the Year by My Table, and received its top honor in 2007, as Chef of the Year. After the Gravitas partnership was dissolved, Gould sought the opportunity to become the Research and Development Chef at Cyclone Anaya’s, and was officially named part of the restaurant’s family in January 2010 (lucky us!).

As Research and Development Chef, Gould will help plan future endeavors including the development of new restaurant concepts.


January 2013: NEW! Cyclone Anaya’s Central

Hi. I’m Lexi. I recently graduated from The University of Texas at Austin and am taking over this blog in hopes of making it an outlet to keep family, friends, and guests alongside the many adventures and expansion of Cyclone Anaya’s Mexican Kitchen.

My grandfather, Cyclone Anaya, was a stud. He started his professional wrestling career at the ripe age of 17 when he became the Champion of Mexico. Shortly thereafter, Cyclone Anaya, known to our family as Papa, came to the United States and made a dramatic entrance into the pro-wrestling circuit. He thrilled the hearts of millions of fans and was certainly a Legend!

During this time he met his wife of over 50 years, Carolina – a former Miss Houston and the matriarch of our family. Many championship titles and five children later, Cyclone switched gears. He and his family entered the restaurant business in Houston. Cyclone and Carolina’s youngest, Rico, is my father. He is the current owner and operator of Cyclone’s and can often be spotted with his sister, Vienna, whom plays a vital role in the success of our family business.

After 40 years Cyclone Anaya’s has become a true Texas legacy, serving real family hospitality and deep-seated traditions. We have a true passion for fine homemade Mexican food – it would be wrong not to share!

So welcome, everyone, I am pleased you stopped by. Me, my family, and Jason Gould (Cyclone’s über talented chef!) are excited to express our passions, traditions, and happenings with you.

2013-02-04_0007Photos (top to bottom, left to right): Cyclone Anaya ‘Papa’, Rico Valencia, Sr. ‘Dad’, Vienna Valencia Molder ‘Aunt Vienna’, me


November 2012: Opening in Northern Virginia’s Mosaic District

Published by the Washington post – The forthcoming Cyclone Anaya’s in the Mosaic District will have little in common with the influx of taquerias in the Washington area The 200-plus seat restaurant will, like its operations in Houston and Dallas, channel the casual refinement of a national dining chain, the nightlife booziness of a clubby watering hole and the high-chair homeyness of a family eatery. It’s refined suburban Tex-Mex for people who find Uncle Julio’stoo kiddie-intensive.

“We’re going to do a margarita cart here,” Valencia mentions, noting that it might include the use of liquid nitrogen. “We’re going to make tableside margaritas.”

Likewise, Cyclone Anaya’s menu will split the difference between down-and-dirty Tex-Mex and the chef-driven Mexican-inspired cuisine. It’ll run the gamut from chile con queso to cheese enchiladas to spicy grilled salmon and lobster enchiladas with a white-wine cream sauce. “So if you’re in an office building and somebody says, ‘Hey, I want Tex-Mex,’ and somebody says, ‘Hey, I want a burger,’ we’ve got both,” Gould says. “Now the burger will be flavors of Tex-Mex.”

If this sounds like a Tex-Mex chain with ambitions, that’s because it is. Rico Valencia says that he hopes to open five Cyclone Anaya’s in the general area, including one he already has planned for Charlottesville in the near future. The Cyclone team also has been scouting locations for Boston and Chicago.

In the meantime, however, the team hopes to open in the Mosaic District in 2013.

October 2012: Customer Feedback

Today, customer feedback is often immediate and right to the point. At Cyclone Anaya we look at it as an opportunity to improve, as well as act on it. However, here are times when a compliment makes our day and we are overjoyed! We just had to share it and hope that our customer will also read this blog.

Dined 08/16/2012 | Party Size: 2
“If there is such a thing as gourmet Mexican food, then Cyclone Anaya’s defines it.”
Food 5.0
Service 5.0
Cleanliness 5.0
Value 5.0
Overall Experience 5.0

At Cyclone Anaya, our customers do have voices that are valued and we are listening! So send us your comments or concerns to or send us a comment on Facebook.

September 2012: How about the name Anaya?

Picking the right name for your child is a daunting task. With all the options, it can be extremely overwhelming. How your baby’s name sounds when it’s said aloud is one of the most essential things to think about. Most importantly, your child will be stuck with this name for a long time. Here’s a story from the Dighe family in Dallas, Texas of naming their daughter.

Family, culture, religion, books, favorite destinations – all elements that come into consideration during the process of naming a newborn. Well, none of these were part of our process for naming our daughter.

Late one Saturday night my cousins, brother, husband and I were looking for a place to eat dinner around the Uptown area. As we were driving, one of my cousins spotted this “new and hip restaurant” that he had heard about from several people. We walked into the restaurant, but shortly had to leave since there was an hour wait. As we were leaving we realized that we didn’t know the name of the restaurant. Fortunately, we passed the restaurant entrance and finally saw the name – Cyclone Anaya’s. Upon reading the word “Anaya,” I found myself thinking, “Anaya would be the perfect name for my daughter.” Coincidentally, my cousin, who was sitting next to me, said jokingly “How about Anaya for a name?” I got goose bumps and couldn’t stop thinking about the name “Anaya.” Additionally, as soon as we were alone in our car driving home, both of us almost said instantaneously, “how about Anaya for her name?”

We were in love, once again, but this time in love with the name “Anaya.” We are so thankful for that evening when we stumbled upon Cyclone Anaya and we can’t imagine our daughter with any other name. Oh, we also love the food! Thank you Cyclone Anaya!

August 2012: Staying Cool

August days with heat can be oppressive where it sucks the energy right out of you before you take more than a few steps out the door. Heat shimmering, sweat dripping and just the feeling of being uncomfortable. In Texas we have few more months of the heat before it cools down. In the scorching heat this month, one drink that promises to bring relief is our margaritas! Have a glass or order our signature jumbo glass. Look no further then these refreshers that will put a pep back in your step.

Frozen Margarita swirled with Strawberry, Raspberry, Mango, Melon, Peach or Pomegranate

The Wave
Frozen Margarita topped with Sangria

The Green Goblin
Jumbo House Frozen Margarita with a Bottle of XX Lager