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Downtown for early business dinner

Hi all,

I will be in downtown next week and looking to take clients out for dinner to somewhere that is preferably in walking distance of Miliam and Rusk. Looking for great food, with cost a secondary issue. Voice at the Hotel Icon used to be my destination of choice (prefer not to go to a standard steak-house) but now that it is gone I am not sure where to go. Have been leaning towards *17, but would really like some other options. Had considered Kris Bistro, but client said they wanted to stick to downtown.

Thanks for your help.

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  1. I have heard very good things about Samba Grille, although I've never been. It's in Bayou Place.

    http://sambagrillehouston.com/menus/d...

    1 Reply
    1. Artista, Morton's Steakhouse.

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      Artista
      800 Bagby Street, Suite 400, Houston, TX 77002

      1. Thanks for the replies so far.
        I have been to Artista with this same client, and it was only ok, so would rather avoid it.
        Morton's is not exciting, and I would rather avoid a regular steakhouse. Looking for something a bit more creative.
        Samba Grille looks good, but the reports I have read suggest it is too loud for a business dinner.

        Any thoughts on *17?

        2 Replies
        1. re: mrmagee

          Agreed on both accounts, but your limitations leave you with few options. The last time I was at 17 was at least 2 chefs ago, but it was outstanding then. Some people rave about Quattro in the Four Seasons. I've had bar food there that was beautifully presented and tasty. The environment is a tad stuffy.

          How 'bout that revolving restaurant atop the Hyatt, the Spindletop? Don't know about the food, but the view is fine.

          McCormick and Schmicks for seafood.

          1. re: Lambowner

            It's been a while, but I've had dinner at Quattro. It was good, but nothing to write home about. Decent wine list, however. But certainly nothing truly memorable from as food standpoint. Perhaps it's changed.

        2. I think you may be a little more challenged in that part of downtown. Depends onn your definition of walking distance. On the opposite end of downtown, you have Brennan's, Damian's, and Charivari. All with delicious food and a nice atmosphere for business. I'd recommend a short cab ride. I think Spindletop is dinner only. Of course, there are loads of fancy steak houses.

          1. In the Penzoil & across from the Esperson buildings is an italian place called Perbacco. It may be VERY crowded because of the theaters nearby. Its reasonable if you want, or you can drop some cash too. Pasta is home made, and the osso bucco is slow cooked tasty. I had the quail last time I was there as a special and it was tender and juicy.

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            Perbacco
            700 Milam St, Houston, TX 77002

            2 Replies
            1. re: MoreOysters

              I have been to Perbacco with them for lunch, and it did not seem a high-end place (order at the counter) although it might be different at night, but I don't think see it as an option, even if only because we have been there before.

              Arashall, when I did my original search on this board, many of those restaurants came up, but the client has been specific about staying in close vicinity.

              1. re: mrmagee

                Assuming the weather is good, Massa's seafood is about 6 blocks from you. IMO it's not fabulous, but it's certainly respectably good food. Definitely caters to the business crowd. If you can talk them into a $6 cab ride (or a much longer walk) then any of the places previously mentioned.

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                Massa's Restaurant
                1160 Smith St, Houston, TX 77002