Where to Eat in Houston Right Now

From ReikiNa’s artful tasting menus to Railway Heights’ stunning debut.

ReikiNa
ReikiNa | Photo by Kat Ambrose
ReikiNa | Photo by Kat Ambrose

Eating Houston is always thrilling. A hotbed of multiculturalism, we can honestly say we are one of the most interesting food cities in America (dare we say, even the world?). But with 10,000-plus restaurants, it’s all too easy to get overwhelmed when scoping out the local dining scene, whether you’re a lifelong Houstonian or just popping in for the weekend. Enter Eat Seeker, our carefully curated list of the best eateries Houston has to offer at this very moment in time.

Our latest lineup includes an Asian-inspired barbecue joint with Vietnamese-style burnt ends, an artful French restaurant making good use of fresno chiles and Venezuelen chocolate, and a stupidly good Mediterranean tasting menu concept featuring housemade Vermouth. Diners, start your engines.
 

Georgia James Tavern
Georgia James Tavern | Photo by Julie Soefer

The gist: This casual little sibling to Underbelly Hospitality’s Georgia James opened at the end of July, bringing Old Hollywood vibes and GJ’s beloved cast-iron steaks to the ground floor of Market Square Tower. Chef de cuisine Matthew “Tally” Coburn (an Underbelly alum) runs the kitchen while pastry director Victoria Dearmond crafts crave-worthy desserts.
The food: Gorgeous hunks of perfectly seared beef ride alongside classy everyday fare driven by high-quality ingredients and technique. Expect hearth-roasted oysters dripping in green garlic-chili butter, confit chicken wings with candied peanuts, and a Tavern Burger made with 44 Farms beef, house pickles, and smoked onion fancy sauce. Finish with Dearmond’s wood-fired apple crumble a la mode—topped with bourbon ice cream, obviously.
The cost: Starters and small plates $14 - $25, sandwiches $18 - $25, mains $36 - $85, desserts $6 - $12, beer and wine by the glass $5 - $20, cocktails $10 - $18.
How to book: Reserve via Resy.

Le Jardinier
Le Jardinier | Photo by Emily Chan

Le Jardinier

Museum District

The gist: Michelin star chef Alain Verzeroli (who for decades worked under the legendary Jöel Robuchon) masterfully harnesses the power of peak-season ingredients at this artful French restaurant on the Museum of Fine Arts campus, where guests can wine and dine in full view of the majestic sculpture garden.
The food: Verzeroli takes a refined, in-season approach to French cooking (Le Jardinier is French for “the gardener,” afterall), with dishes from King Kampachi with golden pineapple and fresno chili to Australian lamb chop with sumac and glazed fig. Pastry chef—and fellow Michelin Star recipient—Salvatore Martone’s desserts, like the Venezuelen dark chocolate crémeux draped in salty caramel sabayon, are equally as stunning.
The cost: Seasonal tasting menus $130 - $240, a la carte starters $18 - $34, a la carte mains $30 - $48, a la carte desserts $15 - $25, a la carte cocktails and wine by the glass $13 - $34.
How to book: Reserve via Resy.

ReikiNa
ReikiNa | Photo by Kat Ambrose

ReikiNa

Memorial City

The gist: Uchi alum Thomas Stacy brings his progressive tasting menu concept to life in a thought-provoking experience in CityCentre. Guests can book a seat at the 20-person communal table and marvel over eight-course presentations against a backdrop of vinyl tunes and a 105-foot-long gallery wall featuring works from local artists.
The food: Highlighting Asian flavors through a European lens, expect Stacy and team—including sous chef Jacob Larimore (MAD, BCN) and pastry chef Carla Briseño (MAD, BCN, Roka Akor)—to switch up the tasting menus every six to eight weeks. Past highlights include plates of char siu heritage pork belly and tart cherry bao, octopus carpaccio with yuzu vinaigrette, and “duck duck goose” dumplings in blueberry hoisin.
The cost: Tasting menus $150 - $246.50.
How to book: Reserve via Resy.

Railway Heights

Washington

The gist: This highly anticipated two-story food hall hails from the minds behind Houston’s very first food hall, Conservatory, as well as its chef-driven follow up, Bravery Chef Hall (long story short, these folks know their way around a marketplace). Its early August soft opening brings a combination of food and drink vendors, restaurants, and art and retail outposts, while awesome additions like a beer garden, coffee bar, dog park, and farmers market are set to open in phase two.
The food: Some of Houston’s hottest purveyors will set up shop alongside exciting newcomers, with over a dozen spots already open. Current and upcoming standouts include Polish comfort food slinger Pierogi Queen, Japanese sandwich concept Sando, Mykuna, a Latin-Asian spot from chef David Guerrero (of Andes Cafe fame), and BOH Slice, a spinoff of chef Ben McPherson’s BOH Pizza & Pasta.
The cost: Menu prices vary by vendor.
How to book: Stop by for first come, first served seating.

The Lounge at March Restaurant
March private dining room | Photo courtesy of Julie Soefer Photography

March

Montrose

The gist: After much anticipation, the Goodnight Hospitality team (Rosie Cannonball, Montrose Cheese & Wine) fittingly opened the doors to this stunning Mediterranean tasting menu emporium back in March.
The food: Chef-partner Felipe Riccio whisks diners through a modern, Levant-oriented journey in six or nine courses, which might range from snapper crudo with chermoula to couscous with fennel and urchin. Helmed by an all-star team spanning beverage director Mark Sayre, master sommelier and partner June Rodil, and bar manager Alex Negranza, the wine and cocktail programs are also of note—and make good use of the 11,000-bottle-deep cellar lurking below.
The cost: Tasting menus $145 - $195, wine pairings $65 - $175.
How to book: Reserve via Resy.

Tonight And Tomorrow
Tonight & Tomorrow | Photo courtesy of COMOcreatives

The gist: As part of boutique hotel La Colombe d’Or’s grand reopening comes this luxuriously renovated day-to-night restaurant spotlighting Chef Jonathan Wicks’ modern European cuisine with a Houston twist—all in the stately dining room of a 1920s mansion. 
The food: Stop in for varied breakfast options like chilaquiles, bagels and lox, and a sourdough tartine served with avocado, egg yolk, and furikake. Dinner is a similarly international affair from the appetizers (curried carrots with labneh, fresh-caught Gulf crudo) down to the entrees (bucatini with squash and heirloom tomatoes, red snapper served Vietnamese-style with vermicelli, chili, and basil). Houston references abound beyond the food, too—a bourbon-spiked cold brew cocktail, the Rushmore Academy, alludes to hometown hero Wes Anderson’s film set at a local private school. 
The cost: Starters $10 - $30, dinner mains $23 - $68, lunch, breakfast, and brunch mains $13 - $34, cocktails $14 - $15. 
How to book: Reserve via OpenTable.

The gist: The brainchild of Chinese-American brothers Robin and Terry Wong and pitmaster Quy Hoang, this critically-acclaimed Asian-inflected ‘cue joint turns out a daily menu that offers new discoveries each visit.
The food: Beyond staples like brisket fried rice and the pulled pork-stuffed Pig Moe sandwich, recent offerings have included Vietnamese thit nuong pork belly done in the style of burnt ends and Mexican-inspired seared octopus served with chimichurri and street corn. With the Blood Bros. team teasing two new concepts, LuLoo’s Pantry and LuLoo’s Bodega, set to open later this year, there’s never been a better time to get reacquainted with their genre-defying take on Texas fare.
The cost: Meat by the pound $16 - $24, sides and shareables $12 - $60.
How to book: Stop by for counter service or order catering online.

Bludorn
Bludorn Restaurant | Photo by Julie Soefer

Bludorn

Montrose

The gist: Chef Aaron Bludorn’s namesake restaurant and all-around New American stunner may have been the best thing to come out of Houston in 2020. It’s the first solo project for the former Café Boulud chef, who is married to Victoria Pappas of the local Pappas restaurant empire.
The food: Set in the former Pass & Provisions space on Taft, Bludorn shows off the chef’s skillful European technique alongside a much-welcomed punch of Gulf Coast love via next level dishes including a brioche donut and foie gras, Gulf cioppino, lobster pot pie, and a baked Alaska you never knew you needed. Snag a reservation to see what all the deserved fuss is about.
The cost: Dinner shareables and mains $13 - Market Price.
How to book: Reserve via Resy.

UME

Heights

The gist: This brand new sushi experience comes from the genius team behind MF Sushi, including sushi guru and chef Chris Kinjo, aka “Magic Fingers.” 
The food: Kinjo has worked his “magic” once more to open this lil’ bro to acclaimed Museum District haunt, MF Sushi. Consider this a more casual iteration, sitting right on White Oak
and offering a thoughtful landscape of eats from grilled whole squid and wood-smoked hamachi to a tour de force of sushi and sashimi.
The cost: Small plates and apps run $3 - $20+ and sushi and sashimi run from $3-$35.
How to book: Call 832-767-5872 for reservations.

93 ‘til

Montrose

The gist: Cali-raised chefs and buds Gary Ly (Underbelly) and Lung Ly spent some time cooking and hanging out in tiny record-strewn dives in NYC together before returning to Houston to open up this super cool kitchen, bar, and lounge. Stashed inside the former Night Heron space, its name is a nod to hip hop legends Souls of Mischief’s song “93 ‘Til Infinity,” and that chill vibe carries throughout the experience.
The food: Expect good tunes and even better food, with playful, cheffy plates like the foie gras torchon PB&J mixing with comfort grub from fried chicken sandwiches to pork cheek shepherd’s pie.
The cost: Shareables $8 - $24, cocktails $13, beer and wine by the glass $3 - $17.
How to book: Stop by for first come, first served seating.

Ostia
Ostia dinner | Photo by Jenn Duncan

Ostia

Montrose

The gist: Hometown chef Travis McShane brings his impressive culinary chops back to Houston, with a damn good roast chicken by his side.
The food: McShane, a Houston native who climbed the ranks in acclaimed chef Jonathan Waxman’s haunts from Barbuto in New York to Adele’s in Nashville, plays with Mediterranean and Italian influenced New American fare. Don’t miss the half chicken, a simple stunner with lemon, salsa verde, and herb jus; or the ever-changing lineup of gnocchi, bucatini, linguine, and more.
The cost: Shareables and mains are $12-$58 at dinner, and there’s brunch and lunch, too.
How to book: Book a table online.

The gist: The talented crew behind Nancy’s Hustle has created another home run neighborhood joint on Houston’s east side. 
The food: This time, the team moves its attention to pastas, pizzas, small plates, and ice creams by the scoop. Bring a friend and grub on mortadella tortellini, blue crab and chili butter polenta, fried mussels and aioli, and pies topped with everything from anchovy and garlic to pineapple, speck, and jalapeño. For dessert you’ll want some of that ice cream, think mint stracciatella, meyer lemon sorbet, and toasted almond scoops finished with olive oil, maldon sea salt, and labhen whip.
The cost: Small plates are $6 - $18, pizzas and pastas run $10 - $19+, and desserts start at $4.
How to book:Book a table to dine-in or order food to-go online.

The gist: You’ll find a multitude of creative tastings at this sushi hideaway tucked into an office building off West Alabama. Billy Kin, who caught all of our attention at the now-closed Blackbird Izakaya, is the man behind the scenes here, promising a world-class journey through Japanese delights.
The food: A5 wagyu sliders stacked with Hudson Valley foie gras, exquisite truffle and scallop sushi, and oysters with Japanese salmon caviar are just a few of the enticements. Kin puts out a multi-course omakase—AKA an intimate chef-led menu progression—and you’ll definitely want to be one of the lucky 14 diners to experience it (trust).
The cost: Tasting menus $175, BYOB corkage fee $20.
How to book: Reserve via Resy.

Street To Kitchen
Photo by Kirsten Gilliam

The gist: Chef Benchawan Jabthong Painter (who grew up in Thailand and cut his chops at spots like Theodore Rex) dishes out unapologetically traditional Thai cuisine at this street food mecca in the far East End.
The food: When Painter says her food is “unapologetically Thai,” she means she’s not using any sugary, watered down, readymade short cuts. Everything is legit made from scratch in her kitchen, from the steamed pork and shiitake kanom jib dumplings and spicy northeastern-style larb to rice noodle shrimp pad Thai and fiery green curry. You’ll also want to try your new favorite fried chicken, dished up extra crispy with fried lemongrass and a Thai chili cilantro sauce at its side.
The cost: Starters and shareables $5 - $15.99, fried chicken $10.99, sides $2 - $4.
How to book: Reserve via OpenTable or order take-out and delivery online and via DoorDash.

Turner’s
Photo by Kirsten Gilliam

Turner’s

Galleria

The gist: Berg Hospitality (B&B Butchers, The Annie, B.B. Lemon, etc) brings Old World charm to town with this intimate, moody supper club & lounge experience.
The food: Veteran chef and JBA winner Robert Del Grande invokes a bygone era of society via his menu of luxe traditions, from King crab terrine and Petrossian caviar service to lobster Thermidor and Wagyu filet. There’s also a Texas Wagyu “hot dog service” for those looking to keep it casual in the fanciest way possible.
The cost: Starters are $16 - $38, caviar service runs $95+, and entrees are $22 - $82.
How to book: Secure reservations online.

Rosie Cannonball
Courtesy of Julie Soefer Photography

The gist: Goodnight Hospitality’s ever-inviting pizza and pasta spot adds to its already bangin’ repertoire (which also includes a honky-tonk, wine & cheese shop, and cocktail lounge/soon-to-come fine dining spot).
The food: An Italian (and sometimes Spanish and Portuguese) menu centers around a pizza oven and wood-burning grill, with smoky Basque chicken, grilled Napa cabbage, cavatelli alla bolognese, a speck & chile oil pie being just some of the standouts. To-go bonus? You can also add cocktail kits, wine, and pints of gelato. 
The cost: Primi, contorni, and pizzas will run $12 - $18, while larger secondi plates are around $30.
How to book: Place an online order for to-go and delivery or make dine-in reservations online.

Musaafer
Musaafer | Courtesy of Julie Soefer

Musaafer

Galleria

The gist: The duo behind Dubai’s Spice Route Co tapped rising star chef Mayank Istwal to show off the fare of his native India in an over-the-top dining experience.
The food: A mix of traditional and cutting edge eats match the majestic atmosphere at this extraordinary Indian concept. Expect dramatic presentations of pani puri (filled with fresh ceviche, no less), gorgeous stuffed squash blossoms, fiery smoked goat meat, and butter chicken done three ways. 
The cost: Starters $16 - $29, dinner mains $16 - $38, brunch mains $20 - $30, dessert $18 - $25.
How to book: Reserve via OpenTable or order take-out via Toast.

One Fifth Mediterranean
One Fifth Houston | Photo by Jacklyn Warren for StarChefs

One Fifth

Montrose

The gist: This game-changing restaurant from chef and local hero Chris Shepherd (and his talented team—including but not limited to chef de cuisine Matt Staph, culinary director Nick Fine, and pastry director Victoria Dearmond) shifts its focus to red sauce Italian for its final run.
The food: After taking a turn through steaks, pastas, oysters, kabobs, and more, the dynamic crew at One Fifth is cheff-ing it up Italian-style with a bill of familiar comforts in all their red sauce-drenched glory. We’re talking homestyle spaghetti and meatballs, luscious baked pastas, ooey-gooey chicken parm, and New York style cheesecake to rival anything Brooklyn has to offer.
The cost: Starters $12 - $24, mains $17 - $145, pastas $22 - $29, desserts $12.
How to book: Reserve via Resy.

The gist: Downtown’s cool factor cranked up at least 10 levels when the talented chefs (including Uchi veterans Daniel Lee and Patrick Pham, MasterChef winner Christina Ha, and more) took center stage inside this glossy modern food hall.
The food: Start by making a killer smörgasbord of Vietnamese street eats from The Blind Goat and Korean bibimbap from sister concept The Sighted Pig before embracing BOH Pasta & Pizza's alarmingly good pastas and Roman-style pizza al taglio. Change things up with first-class sushi and yakitori from Kokoro or double-down on Texas ribeye from wood-burning steakhouse Cherry Block Craft Butcher. Elsewhere, chargrilled oysters and lobster from Margaux's Oyster Bar demand a date night return. Done and done.
The cost: Most dishes $3 - $30.
How to book: Reserve via Resy or order take-out and delivery via Toast.

Squable

Heights

The gist: The mod, Euro-style bistro comes from the powerhouse trio behind Better Luck Tomorrow, which includes bar genius Bobby Heugel, culinary whiz Justin Yu, and restaurateur Steve Flippo.
The food: With a kitchen backed by Mark Clayton and co., menu offerings like pasta a la béarnaise, mussels bruschetta, and French cheeseburger -- in which a perfectly fatty beef patty and a gorgeous house-baked pain de mie bun are made all the more mouthwatering by an oozing cascade of raclette cheese -- certainly hit the spot. Add retail-priced wine and take a look at Sunday brunch and the newly added Sunday steak night.
The cost: Breads, salads, and starters are $7-$15, pastas run $12-24, entrees are $18-$32, and there’s a Chef’s Choice dinner for two for $85.
How to book: Place a contactless pickup to-go order online, or book a Resy to dine-in.