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Nov 20, 2008 08:07 AM

Chicago CH Seeking Houston Dining Rec's

I'll be spending a week during early December in the heart of the city, and would appreciate a few recommendations for the more interesting dining spots. My preference would be places that are unique to the area and representative of what's happening in Houston and Texas.

Thanks for your suggestions!

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  1. Where will you be staying? Will you have a car? I'm from Houston and not sure what you mean by "heart of the city."

    3 Replies
    1. re: maryanntex

      Staying at the Hyatt Regency Houston, and spending my days in the Geo. R. Brown Convention Center.

      1. re: Markauf

        You didn't say if you would have a car or not.

        Here is a link to a review of a place right by the George R Brown. It's from a local blogger who is very trustworthy.

        1. re: danhole

          Not sure if I'll have wheels yet.
          This looks like a great burger joint! Thanks for the help.

    2. Reef is a contemporary seafood forward place with gulf coast influences.
      Churrascos is a great place for upscale south american.
      El Tiempo for fajitas and a margarita.
      BB's on Montrose for great po-boys and grillades and grits.

      1. Check out the reviews and map the locations for these on

        For Mexican my favorites are Pico's and Teotihuacan. The original Ninfa's (on Navigation) is still good, and definitely a Houston institution. These places are all relatively inexpensive and casual.

        For breakfast on Saturday or Sunday, I like Empire Cafe best, followed by Buffalo Grille and Goode Co. Mexican. For a great drive-thru breakfast (or lunch or dinner), I like El Rey on Washington.

        I love love love Nidda Thai. Fish in the Garden and the special eggplant.

        Niko Niko's (Greek) on Montrose is fun and cheap and casual.

        Brasil has good salads and pizza. Good for breakfast, too.

        I like Indika, Ibiza, Shade, Mockingbird, and Catalan (although Catalan gets pretty loud) for more upscale but not extremely expensive.

        1. Thanks for all the suggestions.
          Looks like I won't leave Houston hungry!!!

          2 Replies
          1. re: Markauf

            Max's Wine Dive on Washington is quite fun, but pretty loud. They serve comfort food fixed haute with a real wine list. Delicious sliders, mac n cheese with truffles (you get the idea).

            I second the suggestion for Catalan, also on Washington.

            In the Heights, not far from downtown, is Shade. I really love their menu, especially a halibut served with asian influence. The space is nice and the proprietors are wonderful!

            Directly in front of the GRB is The Grove in the Discovery Green park. Nice setting and good menu. Not a bargain, though, considering it is supposed to be a casual rest.

            1. re: Markauf


              If you do get wheels for the trip the "washington corridor" is the new hot spot in houston. Notice all the places mentioned on Washington Ave. To add to houstonhounds list here is another one just off of washington. It is listed as a BBQ place but has taken a new direction since they have a new chef and is now more of a smokehouse. It's called beavers and is a campy spot. The daily specials are where the chef really shines, but most of it is really good, and getting better.


              Catalan is great but the menu changes quite frequently so don't get all set to eat X just to get there and find out that only Y is offered. Whatever is offered will be very good. Wonderful chef, great wine selection.


              Also El Tiempo that jscabor mentioned is also on Washington.

            2. I'd like to thank everyone again for all your help insuring that I was well fed in Houston.
              We enjoyed memorable meals at Hugo's and Catalan. However, could've sure done without all the snow last week.....I get enough of that at home!
              Thanks Again!