From delicious breakfasts to drinks with live music, Houston has all your food and needs covered. Boasting many popular hangouts, the last thing anyone wants to do when they’re hungry or thirsty is stand in a line, but these ten restaurants and bars in Houston are worth the wait. Enjoy the best of Houston with our guide to some of its most popular venues.
The Breakfast Klub
Cafe, Restaurant, American, $$$
A veritable institution, The Breakfast Klub can have a line so long it wraps around the building. On a Sunday morning, it can stretch past two. Fortunately, as you tuck into waffles or tender fried chicken, you’ll soon forget about the wait. You can buy The Breakfast Klub’s Signature Seasoning, Waffle & Pancake Mix, and other restaurant-related paraphernalia in-store.
Peli Peli takes its name from the most identifiable spice in South African cuisine. The sampler, Flavors of South Africa, is a great introduction to the delicious dishes created by Peli Peli’s chefs. Luckily for those of you in the center of town, you no longer have to go to Northwest Houston for a taste of South Africa. Peli Peli opened another location in The Galleria last year, and the food is just as good.
Located in Montrose, Common Bond serves delicious freshly baked bread. The chef-owner, Roy Shvartzapel, refined his pastry talents all over Europe, and Common Bond’s pain perdu will rival that of any similar item found in Paris. Although Common Bond serves both breakfast and lunch, the displayed baked goods are what turns first-time customers into repeat patrons.
Johnny’s Gold Brick offers a reasonably priced cocktail menu, a happy hour and a chalkboard full of specials. There is a revolving list of craft cocktails created by the bar staff each month, and the results are always unexpected but delicious. Visit the bar when it’s slow, and ask the bartenders about their latest concoction. You are guaranteed to have a great conversation about liquor and flavors, and if you’re lucky, you may get a sip of something to be on next month’s menu.
Stanton’s City Bites sells some of the city’s best hamburgers. Whether you have a flair for the dramatic and prefer your patty covered in chili, or like to keep things simple, Stanton’s City Bites has something for you. If hamburgers aren’t your preference, the sandwich selection is also more than enough to keep you satisfied.
In an age where every eye in your local coffee shop is glued to a screen, the wi-fi free zone of Catalina Coffee is a welcome novelty. The baristas have perfected the espresso-to-milk ratio in the flat white, and the warm spice of the chai latte will make you smile no matter how gloomy the weather might be. There is a table of café accoutrements near the window, but don’t reach for the stirring sticks just yet. Give your latte a taste, and you’ll find that Catalina’s coffee is best enjoyed exactly in the manner that it’s handed to you.
A litany of bars compete for your attention on the 300 block of Main, but Nightingale Room is an unmissable attraction. The two-story space allows for Saturday revelers to mingle in the open area in front of the bar or to head to the loft above. Once a week, the loft space transforms into a stage where you can find local and out-of-town artists performing.
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Toaster’s is a small brunch spot across from the University of Houston-Downtown and near the start of the Heights Bike Trail. There are breakfast and lunch menus and breakfast is where they really excel. The breakfast sandwiches come with a choice of five different bread options – croissant, sourdough, biscuit, white or wheat bagel – and your eggs are served exactly how you want them.
The renovated space that Arlo’s Ballroom calls home is cozy and reminiscent of a party in college, but with a fog machine, stronger drinks, and more attractive people. You will be singing along to Celine Dion one minute, and showcasing your best dance moves under the disco ball the next.
The local music community in Houston is known for being tight-knit and supportive, and nothing exemplifies that more than the existence of The Waughford in Washington Heights. This venue is a house converted into a social space where you can hear Houston’s finest local talent perform. If you’re a fan of local music, stick around after and chat to the performers. In addition to live music, The Waughford also hosts Sketchbook Saloon, a monthly life drawing class.