Top 10 Restaurants in Garden Oaks/Oak Forest
Photo by Troy Fields Spaghetti and meatballs at Doyle's.
Opened in 1954, Doyle's is a vintage Houston institution where many Houstonians ate their first spaghetti and pizza. As befitting its legacy, spaghetti and meatballs are the house specialty; Robb Walsh even called the dish "the kind of spaghetti dinner that once defined Italian food in America." The time capsule atmosphere is great -- and so are the lasagna and the oven-baked sausage po-boy with red gravy and mozzarella. And in keeping with the neighborhood, this is a very family-friendly joint, so bring the kids with you.
The last of the Cafe Red Onions that once dotted the city, this Highway 290 location was always the best spot anyway. Chef Rafael Galindo's cuisine is still as good as it ever was, with dishes such as his signature Chicken Brazil (marinated in beer, jalapeño and honey before being grilled and served with queso and fried eggplant) drawing rave reviews.
5. Pho Dalat
Photo by Katharine Shilcutt Whole fried catfish at Pho Dalat.
You don't go to Pho Dalat for the pho. You go for everything else: the head-on shrimp hot pot, the crispy whole-fried catfish, the bun with chargrilled pork and the welcoming atmosphere tucked into an unlikely strip center location just off Tidwell and 290. Pho Dalat is BYOB and the friendly service encourages you to pack a cooler of beers, unwind and enjoy your Vietnamese feast at a leisurely pace (and for a low price).
4. Shepherd Park Draught House
Photo by Troy Fields Shepherd Park Draught House serves food late into the night.
Shepherd Park Draught House specializes in above-average pub grub and local craft beers, which is becoming a welcome trend in the GOOF area. Happy hour specials let you enjoy beer and wine on the cheap, while late-night hours ensure that locals don't have to venture inside the Loop to find something good to eat on a weekend evening. Burgers are your best bet here, as is the Sunday morning brunch that's perfect for fighting rock star-size hangovers. The walls are covered in rock paraphernalia, including a section plastered in classic punk and hardcore flyers, some from Houston's own sweaty shows.
3330 Ella Blvd., Houston, TX