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Sep 16, 2011 10:18 AM

Going to the Alley Theater... any brunch/lunch suggestions?

We're going to see a play at the Alley Theater in the afternoon on Saturday, so I'm trying to find a good place for brunch (buffet or not) or lunch before the show.

I've been to Benjy's in the Village before and liked it. We have guests form Dallas, and I think they would like it as well.

Other places being considered:
Brennan's (not sure if they have a Sat bruch)
Monarch in Hotel Zaza

I would welcome any opinions or other recs.

Is Birra Poretti worth going to? Its very close to the theater and would work well logistically.


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  1. We have been to Birraporetti's occasionally pre-theater, especially when in the company of children, and I'm always pleasantly surprised that it is very decent food and service with a touch of "out on the town elegance" and as you note, quite convenient.

    Max's Wine Dive has a Saturday brunch now. Backstreet has a great seasonal lunch menu and it might be cool enough for the patio which should impress your Dallas friends. It always does me, anyway! Take a look at the menu at Haven too, it's got great food and vibe.

    500 Louisiana St., Houston, TX 77002

    4 Replies
    1. re: Lambowner

      Thanks for the recs. Decided against Italian since my wife makes a killer carbonara, we make pizzas in our own brick oven, and I am still on a high from Osteria Antica (from over a year ago ! Love that place). Backstreet sounds enticing so I called and and made a reservation.

      Tried Haven during HRW and had a nice meal. It was however superseded by dinner at Stella Solla, which I highly recommend - get the bone marrow, and the salted caramel affogato for sure. Back on topic - we looked at the brunch menu for Stella Solla and it is also on our list of places to try for brunch ( going there for dinner this weekend so can't go there for brunch).

      A friend recommended Canopy. I checked out the menu, and that fried pork loin looks mighty good (... as do many fried things, to me). Any supporters?

      1. re: caliking

        Agreed that Haven doesn't hold a candle to Stella Sola. (You named two of my favorite things at Stella Sola -- the other being the roast suckling pig). We love brunch at Stella Sola, and it's definitely worth checking out some time.

        Not much advice regarding Backstreet -- to be honest, I went once for dinner about 18 months ago, and it was fine, but not good enough to make it back into the rotation yet. I do feel like others seem to have had more wow-ing experiences there than I did, so hopefully your mileage will vary.

        As to brunch options, our favorite place for brunch is Rainbow Lodge. I've only been to Canopy once, and it was a catered breakfast, so I don't have enough information to weigh in. (The food was well-done but very standard -- scrambled eggs, potatoes, and fruit.) But it's a nice space and I have heard good things about the brunch menu (particularly that pork loin).

        Rainbow Lodge
        2011 Ella Blvd., Houston, TX 77008

        Stella Sola
        1001 Studewood, Houston, TX 77008

        1. re: caliking

          Sorry, just realized you were talking about Saturday, not Sunday. (This will teach me to read more carefully!) Rainbow Lodge only does brunch Sunday.

          Rainbow Lodge
          2011 Ella Blvd., Houston, TX 77008

          1. re: mjust

            So we ended up going to Backstreet Cafe. We all enjoyed eating out on the patio, and were able to finish minutes before it started raining. Us=1, weather 0. :) Although. we were so happy it rained - Texas has been so parched this summer, the rain was much needed. A win-win situation.

            I will definitely go back for brunch at Backstreet. I had excellent crab cakes - soft almost creamy, very little filler/binder- with a red pepper sauce that I really liked. Their poached eggs were good, and the cocktails were nice as well ( I had a plum mojito, others enjoyed their drinks as well). A little on the pricey side, but worth it for a goos experience. When I go back, I will ask for a table in the window nook by the hostess station - a 2top and a 4 top in a bay window which looked like the perfect spot to enjoy brunch and read the paper on a weekend morning.