This “sophisticated, not stuffy” steakhouse has been a local institution since it debuted in its first location next to Ima Hogg’s Bayou Bend mansion back in 1977. Now, it’s over in a century-old log cabin along the banks of White Oak Bayou, but you’ll still find the same lush grounds, hand-carved bar and rustic lodge decor (taxidermy on the walls and all), standout wine list, and menu of wild game hit with in-season touches. Go for Bison Carpaccio and Mexican street corn, the Lodge’s famous Smoked Duck Gumbo, and lump crab topped rainbow trout with pecan brown butter.
Owner: Donnette Hansen
Set in a 114-year-old log cabin with sprawling acre of lush grounds along White Oat Bayou, Rainbow Lodge is a place of out of time. Specializing in wild game and seafood, the restaurant has been a fine dining destination for the better part of the last three decades thanks to proprietor Donnette Hansen. Montana-born but raised in Texas, Hansen attended the New York Restaurant school prior to acquiring Rainbow Lodge in 1988, and her stewardship keeps it thriving to this day. Book early to snag one of the loveliest al fresco tables in Houston, then feast on specialties ranging from smoked duck gumbo, to Texas fried quail with white cheddar grits and bourbon bacon gravy, or rainbow trout with lump crab and pecan brown butter.
How to order: Open for dine-in, patio seating. For curbside pickup, call 713-861-8666.