If you need somewhere special to take that special someone in Houston, we’ve got you covered. Here, eight romantic restaurants guaranteed to impress regardless of whether you’re on a first date or just looking to get on your significant other’s good side.
The James Beard nominated chef Ford Fry serves Texas ranch fare (think Tex-Mex themes) and seafood in a wood-burning stove, like his mesquite-roasted whole snapper with charred lemon and salsa verde. An oyster bar with gleaming seafood towers and a robust cocktail program round out the space.
For classic Catalan flavors inside an intimate 1920s-style bungalow, look no further than chef Luis Roger’s grown-up BCN (the abbreviation for Barcelona). The intimate, 54-seat room grants a taste of authentic Spanish fine dining, with dishes such as an expertly plated lobster bouillabaisse with rice, amid original works by Pablo Picasso.
The Pass, part of an adventurous, dual-concept culinary experience, is an ultra-modern restaurant that serves inspiring five- or eight-course tasting menus (including versions tailored to vegetarians). The 40-seat room dressed in black and white allows views into the open kitchen, where one can enjoy the blaze of the wood-burning oven.
Since 2002, this Italian fine dining mecca helmed by chef Marco Wiles has been a favorite of locals and visitors alike. Inside, wood-fired lamb chops, spaghetti with baby clams and roasted Texas quail with fresh fava beans are served on white linen–covered tables. The food is all on par with the notable list of Italian wines.
A cozy, converted cottage houses this classic French bistro. Inside, the low-key interiors include simple wooden tables and lace curtains. Sip Bordeaux as you nibble on fresh, homemade bread. Then graduate to the fragrant French onion soup and finish with slow-braised coq au vin.
This River Oaks mainstay is the place to be seen—and luckily, the food lives up to the hype, with quintessential French staples like a proper raw bar (best served with chilled Champagne), hand-cut tartares and steak-frites served under Art Deco light fixtures. Order a French 75 and later, over your cassoulet, peruse the wine list (by iPad, of course).
This local Montrose restaurant with its dark woods and iconic Keith Haring and Andy Warhol works has a small menu with a big heart that is focused on techniques like smoking and curing—on display in dishes such as the brisket with Asian spices. For sipping, the beverage program offers plenty of American-distilled whiskeys and gins.
Inside this 100-year-old brick dwelling, it’s all about superior meat served in a sleekly redesigned mod industrial space. It seamlessly melds its traditional butcher shop aesthetic with white tablecloths. Sharing dinner with your loved one? The 40-ounce dry-aged porterhouse for two, sliced tableside, with a side of creamed spinach and a proper bottle of red is the way to go.