Top 10 Restaurants in Montrose

Categories: Top 10

La Cuchara 022.jpg
Photo by Katharine Shilcutt
Cuchara will likely make this list next year.
It's been a while since we tackled neighborhood lists on Eating Our Words, yet posts such as "Top 10 Restaurants in the Heights" continue to be perennial favorites with our readers each month. The last time we compiled a Top 10 Restaurants in Montrose list was well over two years ago, at which time places like Underbelly and Uchi weren't even gleams in their chefs' eyes.

And while we still adore places such as Canopy, Brasil and Nippon, it's time to update that Montrose list to include some of the newcomers that have made Lower Westheimer the city's best culinary corridor. It's an all-star list, too; no filler here.

Honorable Mention: Cuchara and The Pass & Provisions

Although it's too new to be ranked on the full list right now, my first (and so far only) visit to Cuchara gives me high hope that this fascinating Mexican restaurant will turn out to be one of the brightest new restaurants in a part of town already saturated with heavy-hitters, including Hugo's. Ditto the even newer Pass & Provisions, which is shaping up to be the Best New Restaurant of 2013 with its casual atmosphere and wildly creative dishes (have you ever had uni on a pizza?).

See Also:
- Houston's Top 10 Crawfish Joints
- Houston's Top 10 Coffeehouses
- Houston's Top 10 Sushi Restaurants

Hay Merchant Steak Night 002.jpg
Photo by Katharine Shilcutt
The Hay Merchant also offers a killer steak night deal on Tuesdays.
10. The Hay Merchant

While the food can sometimes be hit or miss at the all-craft beer bar, it's a matter of finding the really terrific stuff on Antoine Ware's menu of jazzed-up comfort classics and sticking with them: crispy pig's ears that are chewy and slightly sweet; half a barbecued chicken on a bed of creamy mac 'n' cheese; Vietnamese-style chicken wings in a caramelized fish sauce; the Butcher's Burger, made with house-ground beef that's some of the best in the city; or the chicken-fried water buffalo on those rare days when it's offered as a special. One thing is for certain whatever you order, however: This is not your father's pub grub.

laguadamigas.jpg
Photo by Katharine Shilcutt
You can get migas all day long at La Guadalupana.
9. La Guadalupana

Whether you're in the mood for all-day Mexican breakfast or just enjoying some of Trancito Diaz's freshly baked pastries with a cup of La Guadalupana's signature cinnamon-laced cafe de olla on the funky patio that shares space with a washateria, this old-school gem always offers you a dose of comfort and familiarity with your meal. Diaz is there every day greeting guests with a smile -- and sometimes a free slice of tres leches -- and the waitresses haven't changed in all the years I've been eating there.

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Mark's gorgeous dining room is tough to beat.
8. Mark's American Cuisine

There are two ways to look at Mark's: as a restaurant that hasn't changed its game in years, or as a restaurant that figured out long ago what its customers love and has faithfully stayed that course. If you look at it as the former (and consider the prices, too), you'll be unimpressed -- despite the beautiful location inside a renovated church. If you look at it as the latter, you'll see a chef -- Mark Cox -- who's committed to keeping his customers happy by offering big, swaggering portions of exceptionally well-prepared exotic fare made with interesting seasonal ingredients, such as a coffee-roasted Kurobuta pork loin with bourbon-glazed short ribs (and that's only listing a few of the items on the plate). It's a paradigm not often found in modern restaurants and it works very well for Mark's.


Location Info

Cuchara

214 Fairview St., Houston, TX

Category: Restaurant

The Pass

807 Taft St., Houston, TX

Category: Restaurant

The Hay Merchant

1100 Westheimer Road, Houston, TX

Category: Music

La Guadalupana Bakery and Café

2109 Dunlavy St., Houston, TX

Category: Restaurant

Mark's American Cuisine

1658 Westheimer Rd., Houston, TX

Category: Restaurant

L'Olivier

240 Westheimer Road, Houston, TX

Category: Restaurant

Indika

516 Westheimer Rd., Houston, TX

Category: Restaurant

Pondicheri

2800 Kirby Drive, Houston, TX

Category: Restaurant

Feast - CLOSED

219 Westheimer, Houston, TX

Category: Restaurant

Da Marco

1520 Westheimer Rd., Houston, TX

Category: Restaurant

Hugo's

1600 Westheimer Rd., Houston, TX

Category: Restaurant

Uchi

904 Westheimer Rd., Houston, TX

Category: Restaurant

Underbelly

1100 Westheimer Road, Houston, TX

Category: Restaurant

My Voice Nation Help
43 comments
Wuwu
Wuwu

....Criminal  you list Underbelly numero uno....because I'm sure everyone wants to know my top 10 list I have included it....

 

10.  Nidda

9.  Njoy Thai, new place very nice and some of the best curry you will find.

8.  Danton's, nice spot always good service

7. L Oliver, needs improvement but shows promise for sure.

6. Maria Selma.....best tort soup in town.

5.  La Mexicana breakfast tacos, no on does it like them, no one.

4.  Da Marco, high end but worth every penny...

3.  Triniti...place is always solid.

2. Hugo's...that brunch, 'nough said....

1.  Uchi...come on folks this is not only the best restaurant in Montrose this is the best restaurant in the freaking state!  No one and I will repeat no one is in this league.

 

You will notice there is no mention of Underbelly, El Real, Marks, Dolce Vida, Feast or any of these over hyped places everyone has a hard on for.  So many better choices....

Jalapeno
Jalapeno

Mark's is badly overrated.  It would not be on my list.

CNoyes
CNoyes

Jeannine's Bistro for moules frites, Belgian beer on tap and crepes. Perfect fall weather food!

kshilcutt
kshilcutt moderator editor

Other restaurants I wanted to include, but which we ran out of room for (ten spots is <i>not</i> enough for Montrose, not at all): Roost, Mockingbird Bistro, Dolce Vita, Vinoteca Poscol, Brasserie Max & Julie, Canopy and -- if it's still considered Montrose -- Danton's.

Serena Godwin
Serena Godwin

Katz yummmmmmy smoke 1st lol Then have Ruben !! Bloody Mary~~,, ! Cheese cake shake ! Fried Pickles... Then Bring a Pie Home......

Delano
Delano

One of these things is not like the others....

That would be Guadalupana. Where I personally love to linger for breakfast. But it's not in the same league grub-wise. Poscol, Nelore, Brasserie Max & Julie, Dolce Vita....I've experienced equally charming moments at all these places, and the food I daresay rises to the level of Mitt Romney's hair before a debate.

Heather Guidry
Heather Guidry

My girlfriend likes Indika, LOVES hugo's and cafe brazil. my vote is, Harry's for breakfast, baba Yega's for a light lunch and niko niko's for dinner.

Jessica Alexander
Jessica Alexander

i havne't lived in houston for 4 years now, and although I am very familiar with Uchi (also here in Austin), I would say Mockingbird, Rivas and i LOVE the mention of La Guadalupana Cafe and Bakery. that was my weekly go-to b-fast spot for years. I miss their pastries sooo much.

Nicholas Dion
Nicholas Dion

All these spots are good. But Uchi stands out to me.

Mo Naqvi
Mo Naqvi

Nicholas Deon, you know your shit sir.

Enidbette Ruiz
Enidbette Ruiz

I no longer go to Niko Niko's after discovering Aladdins right down the block. You should try it out Deana.

Deana Sampson Thibodeaux
Deana Sampson Thibodeaux

mmm good question! Haven't been to the area for awhile when my fave Greek spot changed, so It'll be interesting to see all the comments for new suggestions! Of course we always eat at Niko Niko's and Katz's.

Anthony Reynolds
Anthony Reynolds

Uchi or Underbelly. It's hard to have them against each other as Uchi is a much different dining experience than Underbelly.

Kylejack
Kylejack topcommenter

Happy meals at Lola's Depot.

Enidbette Ruiz
Enidbette Ruiz

That's a pretty nice line up. Haven't been to Hugo's in a while!

Kylejack
Kylejack topcommenter

 @Wuwu I once liked Maria Selma a lot. It seems like it has gone downhill a lot in recent years. Cleanliness issues, food not tasting that great issues, a few lousy drinks. I don't even go anymore.

kshilcutt
kshilcutt moderator editor

 @Wuwu We are truly spoiled for great choices in Montrose. Triniti, though, makes me ask that question once again: What are the boundaries of Montrose? I don't even know what neighborhood I'd put Triniti into...

EatingOurWords
EatingOurWords

@ParkerLewis2000 Thanks! Thinking of doing the Heights next. Any other 'hoods you want to see covered soon?

Delano
Delano

 @kshilcutt The Montrose conundrum again: where is it exactly? Mockingbird and Roost? But not Sorrel? I live around the area and there's so much no man's land, I'm always baffled about what's what.

Kylejack
Kylejack topcommenter

 @Delano Just the opposite, I think Guadalupana is perhaps the best. If I wanted to show someone a great example of Houston or Montrose rather than just a good restaurant for anywhere, I'd take them to Guadalupana, and in fact, I have.

kshilcutt
kshilcutt moderator editor

 @Delano I figured some folks would take issue with La Guadalupana. I'll attempt to defend it by saying that the food and service are always consistent (at least in my experiences) and that it rings true to me as a treasure because it's also one of the few older, family-run places left in what's now a very gentrified neighborhood. That, and Trancito's cakes are just amazing.

Mai Pham
Mai Pham topcommenter

@Keely Carter Aladdin! It's got my vote! Definitely Top 10. And where o where oh where is Eatsie Boys!!!???

Kylejack
Kylejack topcommenter

 @kshilcutt  @Wuwu Hm, could use the Super-Neighborhood 24 boundaries. That puts Triniti in, but anything east of the Spur like Brennan's out. Seems reasonable.

ParkerLewis2000
ParkerLewis2000

@EatingOurWords west U/southside place/Bellaire. But good luck with that!

jimbo1126
jimbo1126

 @Delano  @kshilcutt I consider Montrose bounded by Shepherd, Gray, Bagby and Westheimer. That's really too much, but a good general description.

 

A great list that I agree could easily have been a Top 20.

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