When the blur of Christmas fades and it's time for the ball to drop, where will you enjoy the final meal of this year? It's not a decision to be taken lightly. We're here to help ensure that the jacket or dress you pick up from the dry cleaner gets its due and the effort of going out on New Year's Eve is worth it. Here are 13 solid options for celebrating the last night of 2013.
Inside the Culinary Institute LeNotre's Kris Bistro, you'll find a $78 five-course French meal that include classics like foie gras torchon, beef tenderloin Bordelaise and crêpes suzette, with seatings between 5:30 and 6 PM or 8:30 and 9 PM (713-358-5079).
Kiran's Restaurant & Bar
A fancy Indian-influenced four-course meal is what to expect from 5 PM onward at Kiran's. The $95 dinner includes a Champagne toast as well as intriguing selections like tandoor-roasted pepper soup, cumin-scented scalloped potatoes with apricot biryani and saffron crème brûlée (713-960-8472).
Susie Jimenez's Trenza will offer an à la carte affair for the evening with dishes featuring her signature blend of Latin and Indian flavors. A DJ, Champagne and party favors are also part of the package (713-526-1414).
Philippe Restaurant + Lounge
In addition to their regular dinner menu, Philippe will serve a four-course meal for $105 a person with decadent options like the grilled surf and turf of half lobster and Wagyu strip steak as well as a send off that includes both baked Alaska and a flourless chocolate cake. The downstairs wine lounge will have cocktails and bar bites (713-439-1000).
Sparrow Bar + Cookshop
Yet another prix fixe menu will be available at Sparrow for $75 a person with an optional $30 for wine pairings. A sampling of items includes beef cheek tagine with Israeli couscous, Gruyère beignets, antelope cutlets and a bananas Foster cheesecake (713-524-6922).
The Pass & Provisions
Both sides of the dual-concept restaurant will be offering set-price options, with a nine-course over at The Pass for $195 a person - bubbly included - and a more approachable four-course meal in Provisions for $75. Even the bar area gets in on the action with caviar service (713-628-9020).
The Tasting Room
Both the Uptown Park (713-993-9800) and CITYCENTRE (281-822-1500) locations of The Tasting Room will offer prix fixe three-course meals with totally different menus at each. Uptown Park features dishes like beef tournedos and salted caramel croissant bread pudding ($100 per couple) while CITYCENTRE's menu includes sous-vide butter-poached lobster with risotto and a flourless chocolate cake ($55).
Bubbles of a different kind will be served at BRC when the restaurant teams up with Karbach Brewing Co. for a four-course beer pairing dinner inspired by the movie, A Christmas Story. Dishes like 'Show Mama How the Piggies Eat' (wild boar meatloaf with garlic confit duck fat mash potatoes with sweet and sour red cabbage) will be available with various Karbach brews for $65 (713-861-2233).
Prix fixe meals are the way to go this New Year's Eve, and Salé-Sucré adds another two to this list of options. The first seating from 5:30 to 7:30 PM is a $63 four-course dinner with foie gras, lamb shank and profiteroles; the second seating begins at 8 PM and includes live music through the new year for $99 a person. Menu options for the second seating vary slightly from the first (713-623-1406).
A four-course dinner featuring an upscale Latin American menu of items like shrimp empanadas, churrasco steak and lobster tail, plus tres leches, is what you'll get at this dramatic Downtown locale for $145. Seating begins at 7:30 PM with a Latin band heading up the festivities from 9:30 PM to 1:30 AM (713-278-4782).
Bistro des Amis
The $60 three-course menu at this quaint French bistro includes a Champagne toast and balloon drop at midnight, plus a unique option to bring your own wine for a $10 corkage fee (713-349-8441).
New Year's Eve at this snug restaurant in a historic Downtown building means a preset menu of items like filet Oscar, chicken cordon bleu and blackened snapper for $50 (three courses). There are also Champagne packages available (713-254-0919).
Mark's American Cuisine
An opulent meal is sure to be had at Mark's, with a four-course menu for $100 at first seating (5:30 to 6:30 PM) and $175 at second seating (9 to 10 PM). In addition to some of the best food in Houston, there will be a live band, dancing, party favors and the traditional Champagne toast. Off-key renditions of "Auld Lang Syne" are available at no additional cost.