Houston's Best Restaurant Decor

August 9, 2016
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by Zagat Staff

These Houston restaurants are as stylish as the food they're serving. Presenting the best restaurants in the city for decor.

Chama Gaúcha Brazilian Steakhouse
Brazilian · Briargrove · $$
Food 4.6 · Decor 4.5 · Service 4.5

Regulars know to “pass on the salad bar” and save room for the seemingly endless parade of “superb” skewered meats at this Briargrove Brazilian churrascaria “favorite" , which also offers an “awesome” wine list in a “smart, sophisticated” white-tablecloth setting; sure, the “prices are a bit high” , but it’s “totally worth it.”
Eddie V's Prime Seafood
Seafood · Upper Kirby · $$$$
Food 4.5 · Decor 4.5 · Service 4.4

“Seafood as fresh as it gets” plus “surprisingly excellent steak” and an “exceptional” wine list combine for an overall “wonderful experience” in dark, handsome surrounds at these outposts of the upscale national chain; throw in “polished, professional” service, live jazz every night and “excellent” specials at happy hour, and no wonder it’s “always a favorite” for high rollers and special-occasion outings.
Eddie V's Prime Seafood
Seafood · Memorial · $$$$
Food 4.5 · Decor 4.5 · Service 4.4

“Seafood as fresh as it gets” plus “surprisingly excellent steak” and an “exceptional” wine list combine for an overall “wonderful experience” in dark, handsome surrounds at these outposts of the upscale national chain; throw in “polished, professional” service, live jazz every night and “excellent” specials at happy hour, and no wonder it’s “always a favorite” for high rollers and special-occasion outings.
Rainbow Lodge
Brunch · Heights · $$$
Food 4.5 · Decor 4.5 · Service 4.5

Between the “amazing” decor (taxidermied hunting trophies, old rifles, etc.), the “beautiful” log cabin setting on the banks of a bayou and the “delicious” game-centered menu, it’s no wonder this Heights New American is a “classic dining experience” ; it’s perfect for a “romantic date night” , and “on a nice day, you can’t beat the deck” ; P.S. lunch, Sunday brunch and bar menus offer less expensive dining options.
Vic & Anthony's Steakhouse
Steakhouse · Downtown · $$$
Food 4.6 · Decor 4.6 · Service 4.5

A block from Minute Maid Park sits “one of those classic steak places” , complete with “perfectly seasoned” meats, “seafood so fresh you might have to slap it” , an expansive wine list and “one of the nicest bars in Downtown” ; the decor is requisitely masculine and there’s “standout” service too, so no wonder it’s “always busy.”
Brennan's of Houston
Cajun · Midtown · $$$
Food 4.6 · Decor 4.8 · Service 4.8

An “way to visit New Orleans” without leaving town, this “peerless” Creole classic in Midtown combines “impeccable old-school service” , an “elegant setting” in a structure designed to evoke the Vieux Carré and “outstanding” food that includes – but goes well beyond – the “holy trinity of turtle soup, eggs Benedict and bananas Foster” (plus cocktails that'll “knock you off your barstool” ); the prices are “expense-account heaven” , but hey, “it’s more than just a meal, it’s an experience.”
Tony's
Seafood · Greenway Plaza Area · $$$
Food 4.6 · Decor 4.6 · Service 4.6

Tony Vallone’s “timeless Houston classic” in Greenway Plaza is “still at the top of the game” thanks to “spectacular” New American and Italian creations featuring “fresh, high-quality ingredients in thoughtful and delicious combinations” ; sure, it’s “pricey” , but with “unmatched” service and a setting adorned with abstract works from boldface artists, it’s the “epitome of fine dining in all aspects.”
Masraff's
Seafood · Galleria · $$$
Food 4.6 · Decor 4.5 · Service 4.5

Touted as “excellent in every respect” , this “top-tier” Galleria-area New American offers “varied selections” of mains and more including game and “unusual fish species” that “always taste fresh out of whatever sea they came from” ; “reasonably quiet for a Houston restaurant” and sporting a contemporary look with clean lines and muted colors, it’s a “great choice for an expense-account dinner” or “special occasion.”
Américas River Oaks
Brunch · River Oaks · $$$
Food 4.5 · Decor 4.5 · Service 4.5

The River Oaks flagship of the Cordúa collection (Churrascos, Artista) offers “innovative” Pan-Latin creations that “are varied and well executed” and “range far beyond their signature beef dishes” (which are “excellent” , by the way); the “extremely modern” settings are “unique and edgy” , while the service is “gracious without being intrusive” , adding to its popularity as a destination for both “a romantic dinner and a business luncheon.”
Caracol Restaurant
Mexican · Galleria · $$
Food 4.5 · Decor 4.5 · Service 4.3

Seafood gets an upscale spin at this “happening” Galleria Mexican that some say has “emerged as one of the best new restaurants” in town; housed on the ground floor of a sleek tower, the “vibrant” space boasts a “fun atmosphere” and several distinct areas, including an oyster bar, a private wine room and a traditional bar mixing “eclectic” drinks.
Uchi
Japanese · Montrose · $$
Food 4.8 · Decor 4.5 · Service 4.5

It’s “always an adventure for the palate” at chef Tyson Cole’s Montrose outpost of his Austin original, plating “sushi creations” that are “music in your mouth” plus plenty of other “innovative, delectable” Japanese options that don’t involve raw fish; the scene – amid soft lighting and warm woods – is “impossibly hip” , and the tabs are "expensive" but "worth it" ; P.S. it’s “hard to get a reservation” because most of the seats are saved for walk-ins.
Peli Peli
Brunch · Northwest Houston · $$$
Food 4.5 · Decor 4.5 · Service 4.4

Though some consider it a “hike” , the pay-off is “wonderful” at these lively spots serving up “generous portions” of “fabulously presented” South African fusion fare; the Cypress original's “beautiful” space features an artistically rendered 30-ft.-tall acacia tree inside (it's especially upbeat on nights when there’s live music), and there's also an outpost at Uptown's The Galleria.
Damian's Cucina Italiana
Italian · Midtown · $$
Food 4.5 · Decor 4.5 · Service 4.5

Expect an “old-fashioned dining experience” at this upscale Midtown Italian that’s been turning out “wonderful” meals made with “fresh ingredients” for three decades; “low noise levels” are “great for dinner conversation” , and “one huge plus: they have a shuttle to the Theater District.”
Perry's Steakhouse & Grille
Steakhouse · Memorial · $$$
Food 4.5 · Decor 4.5 · Service 4.5

“Steaks cooked to perfection” are a given at this homegrown “high-end” chophouse chain, but it’s the signature pork chops doled out in portions so generous that “servers rightfully should wear lumbar support” that have meat-lovers uttering “one word: phenomenal” ; “sophisticated decor and ambiance” and “smooth, attentive” service are added perks, but the “pricey” tabs move it into “special-occasion” territory.
Del Frisco's Double Eagle Steak House
Steakhouse · Galleria · $$$
Food 4.5 · Decor 4.5 · Service 4.5

The experience is “nothing short of wow” at the upscale Galleria outpost of the national chophouse chain where the “thick and juicy” prime steaks are “seared to perfection” and backed by an “excellent” wine list and cocktails; the “gorgeous” , dark-paneled bi-level setting is a fine choice for a “special occasion” or a business dinner – just “take a co-signer” because the tabs are “hefty.”
The Oceanaire Seafood Room
Seafood · Galleria · $$$
Food 4.4 · Decor 4.5 · Service 4.3

“Beautifully prepared” seafood dishes and a nice selection of oysters are the draw at this “dependable” chain outpost (run by Landry’s) in the Galleria; the “wonderful” setting recalls a grand dining room on an ocean liner, and works well for a business meal or a “special occasion.”