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HOUSTON, Tx. – An institution in Houston, “The Hobbit Café” has been serving up a healthy menu to loyal fans for 43 years.

General Manager John Edmonds, son to one of the restaurant’s creators, says they changed their name from “The Hobbit Hole,” in 2000, when they moved from their Sheppard location to 2243 Richmond Avenue.

“We wanted to keep the establishment in a home, convert it into a restaurant, to maintain that kind of Tavern feel,” Edmonds says.

Inside you`ll see a tribute to all things J.R.R. Tolkien. From Gandalf’s chair, Gollum hanging in the corner, and right down to some of the menu items.

Edmonds shares, “The new age sandwich leader would be the Smaug’s Delight, which is ripe avocado, a thick slice of smoked turkey breast, tomatoes, a pinch of the seasoning and melted Monterey Jack cheese as well.”

Known not only for their Middle Earth theme, they’re also popular for serving up portions with a heavy helping of avocado.

“Well it kind of just started that way, and once you start something you can`t, you know, go back on it. So we`ve kinda been stuck with large avocado portions, which is fine. I would say we definitely have the most generous portions in town,” John explains.

They serve big old Balrog burgers now, too, but in the beginning, The Hobbit Café was a vegetarian`s paradise.

“We started off as one of the original vegetarian restaurants in Houston. We served only vegetarian food from 1972 to the late 70`s.”

And Chew On This – after four generations, change comes with the times. While there was only one ring to rule them all, The Hobbit Café is looking to expand with a new hobbit concept somewhere else in town.

So hit up The Hobbit Café for a little taste of the Shire, right here in H-town.