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A table for four topped with brunch dishes, pastas, and a mimosa, rose champagne, and Bloody Mary.
Trattoria Sofia offers weekend brunch with mimosas, Bloody Marys, and more.
Kirsten Gilliam

Where to Eat and Drink in Houston’s Heights

From fiery hot chicken sandwiches to a champagne-fueled Italian brunch, this neighborhood has lots to offer

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Trattoria Sofia offers weekend brunch with mimosas, Bloody Marys, and more.
| Kirsten Gilliam

The Heights neighborhood was initially founded as a streetcar suburb in the 1890s for Houston-area residents that did not want to live in the density of the city proper. It was annexed by Houston in 1918 and has since been a haven for Houstonians looking for slightly bigger yards, vintage Victorian homes, and a tight-knit neighborhood feel.

But even over the last few decades, the Heights has continued to change and grow, with high rises popping up in rundown areas, new bike lanes creating connections to other parts of the city, and an ever-growing food and drink scene. The result is a neighborhood with old Houston charm and a modern, trendy vibe. That makes it the perfect spot for a lazy patio brunch or an afternoon drink with a relaxing view of stately century-old live oak trees and charming craftsman bungalows.

While Killen’s, Alice Blue, Mico’s Hot Chicken, Lola, and EZ’s Liquor Lounge continue to be popular neighborhood hangouts, they have been removed to make way for newcomers like Incanto, Jun, Moon Rabbit, Chi’lantro, and more.

Put simply, there’s plenty to eat while hanging out in the Heights. Here’s where to start.

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Helmed by former Top Chef contender Evelyn Garcia and chef Henry Lu, Jun takes a modern approach to showcasing Southeast Asian flavors, and coins its cuisine “new Asian.” Start with beef tartare with toasted rice, and oysters topped with fermented mango, then try larger plates like the whole fish or fried chicken spiced with Thai chilis and shrimp paste. Cocktails are equally as diverse in flavor. Sip on a Modelo-fueled michelada, crafted with hoisin and fish sauce.

An overhead shot of whole fish, fried chicken, and white rice.
Jūn is one of Houston’s most exciting new restaurants.
Jia Media

Moon Rabbit

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This Vietnamese restaurant pairs a menu of soups, salads, sandwiches, spring rolls, and bowls with fun cocktails and a stylish, dimly-lit space. Dishes can be built with savory proteins like honey lime chicken, lemongrass pork, garlic butter shrimp, and spicy fried chicken. For a splurge, try the shaken beef, made with tender pieces of filet mignon and tossed with onion, garlic, and jalapenos.

Squable

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When it opened in 2019, Squable, by Justin Yu and Bobby Heugel, quickly made an impression on the neighborhood’s discerning diners. Find excellent dishes like the savory Dutch baby pancake with ricotta and the French cheeseburger showered in raclette, or consider an assortment of veggie-packed plates like poached leeks or acorn squash with blueberry barbecue sauce.

Seven white plates with various dishes atop a wooden table.
Enjoy a spread at Squable.
Jenn Duncan Photography

Goode Co. Kitchen & Cantina

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This restaurant may be new to the Heights, but it joins a long list of restaurants operated by the Goodes, one of Houston’s iconic restaurant families known to deliver when it comes to barbecue and Tex-Mex. Like some of its sister restaurants, Goode Co. Kitchen & Cantina features margaritas, made-to-order guacamole, campechana, and Southern favorites like carnitas and redfish on the half-shell.

La Lucha

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Next door to his Tex-Mex restaurant Superica, chef Ford Fry’s La Lucha is an ode to Texas cuisine. The creative, sometimes cheeky menu boasts dishes like deviled eggs topped with popcorn shrimp and wood-roasted Gulf oysters, plus, a half or whole fried chicken that is considered some of Houston’s best.

Kin Dee

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This glitzy Thai restaurant focuses on noodle dishes from four regions of Thailand, offering meals like ribbony pad see ew, fiery panang curry, and slow-cooked duck breast soup. On the weekends, a DJ takes to the main dining room and the lights are turned down low, offering an extra vibey dining experience.

Roti with egg and curry in a decorative dish.
Find roti guang gai on Kin Dee’s brunch menu.
Alex Montoya

Pinkerton's Barbecue

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Houstonians are known to trek far and wide for fantastic barbecue, and one of the city’s most popular destinations for smoked meats is located conveniently in the Heights. Build a meat plate with sliced or chopped beef brisket, jalapeno sausage, and boudin, and add on traditional sides like coleslaw or Southern-style beans, before finishing strong with a helping of Aunt Ruby’s cobbler.

Incanto

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New to the Heights neighborhood, Incanto offers a vibrant space for groups to imbibe. Cocktails like the vodka-based Pink Flamingo are presented in playful glassware and are available as singles or for parties of six to eight guests to share. The dishes are also shareable. Incanto’s menu features raw bar items like oysters and ceviche, pizzas, and desserts like toffee cake with espresso mousse.

Heights & Co.

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This Heights bar has a full menu and boasts equal parts indoor and outdoor fun. The spacious patio is often crowded on nice weather days, while the indoor bar offers a cozy and intimate alternative. Peruse the small, but mighty list of wines, or spring for an imaginative cocktail like the cucumber vesper or iced bourbon coffee, before noshing on a brisket grilled cheese or steak frites.

An overhead shot of sliders, hot dogs, fries, and a variety of beverages.
A hearty spread at Heights & Co.
CKO Digital

Chi'Lantro

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This Austin-based food truck-turned-restaurant’s claim to fame is its original kimchi fries, which skyrocketed in popularity after being featured on ABC’s hit show Shark Tank. The restaurant’s new Heights location is Houston’s first, and locals far and wide have been rushing in to get a taste of the indulgent snack, loaded with meat and toppings. Beyond fries, guests can build-their-own bowls, with bases like salad, rice, and noodles, plus proteins like Korean barbecue or spicy chicken.

Field & Tides

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Chef Travis Lenig’s restaurant is the Heights destination for seafood enthusiasts, but that’s not all that’s on offer. If you’re not in the mood for crispy Alabama catfish or she-crab soup, go for the fried chicken piccata, presented with garlic mash, green beans, and lemon caper butter. Save room for dessert — Lenig’s chocolate Alabama stack cake is legendary.

A plate of halibut atop a bed of salad on a white plate.
Field & Tides’s halibut is an entree that won’t dissappoint.
Al Torres Photography

With locations in Austin and Dallas, Aaron Franklin and Tyson Cole opened the third iteration of their popular Asian smokehouse on West 11th Street and it has quickly become a neighborhood favorite. Visitors can kick off a meal with a frozen cocktail or wine on tap, before indulging in hearty plates like chicken karaage, char siu pork belly, and the popular smoked beef brisket.

Trattoria Sofia

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At Ben Berg’s rustic Italian restaurant, careful attention is paid to sourcing quality ingredients directly from Italy, resulting in a menu of full-flavored pizzas and pastas, fragrant with fruity olive oil and rich cheese. Start with a bread basket loaded with ciabatta and semolina, then move on to refreshing crudo and a peppery serving of cacio e pepe.

A plate of pasta with red sauce and topped with shaved parmesan.
Ragu d’agnello at Trattoria Sofia.
Jenn Duncan

Eight Row Flint

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Looking to enjoy an expansive outdoor patio, mini tacos, and tailored whiskey flights? Eight Row Flint is the locale for you. The canine-friendly Heights mainstay serves tacos, nachos, wings, and more snacks alongside excellent frozens and a variety of Ranch waters, including the Ranch Rosé, which combines tequila with rosé wine and Topo Chico.

A wood table setting with a variety of plates of food and drinks.
Though Eight Row Flint is best known for its drinks, particularly the Ranch Waters, its food menu is also worth digging into.
Agricole Hospitality

Dinette

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The colorful plates at this Vietnamese restaurant are intended to be sharable, but if you decide to hog a few to yourself, no judgment. Get the table started with the crispy fried egg rolls, Pandan fried okra, and the summer rolls, which are served with a sweet peanut butter and jelly sauce, and consider the Vietnamese grilled pizza topped with pork belly, pineapple, and egg. Look no further than one of the restaurant's whimsical cocktails served in festive glasses with tropical garnishes for an Insta-worthy moment.

Maison Pucha Bistro

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The Pucha brothers are at the helm of this modern eatery where classic French cuisine is met with flavors inspired by the brothers’ Ecuadorian heritage. Find indulgences like burgundy escargots in espelette garlic butter and seafood-filled bouillabaisse, not to mention shrimp ceviche, wagyu beef empanadas, and the ultra-decadent chocolate souffle.

Da Gama

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Husband-and-wife team Shiva Patel and Rick DiVirgilio draw inspiration from their Indian and Portuguese-Italian roots for the menu at Da Gama. Find fusion dishes like lamb keema pizza and peanut chicken tikka, along with Portuguese-style saffron paella, bullet naan, and crab pani puri.

An overhead shot of paella in a paella pan.
Da Gama in M-K-T Heights offers an eclectic combination of Indian and Portuguese flavors.
Ninfa Sanchez

Rakkan Ramen

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This national ramen chain, known for building bowls with plant-based broth as a base, has a location inside the M-K-T Heights development. The small restaurant is often filled with ramen-slurping guests, but the menu has a lot more to offer. Enjoy pork pot stickers, brussel sprouts, steamed bao, and spicy tuna sushi bites when you need a ramen alternative.

Handies Douzo

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Housed in an old Heights bungalow, this popular hand roll bar fits in neatly with its surroundings and is easy to overlook. Helmed by lauded sushi chefs Patrick Pham and Daniel Lee, the restaurant features a menu of chef-driven hand rolls and sashimi in an intimate setting. With only 26 seats situated around a sushi bar, plan your visit in advance, as reservations can be hard to come by.

Coltivare Pizza & Garden

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This charming restaurant churns out piping hot pizza and Italian fare made from fresh produce that’s grown in its very own onsite garden. When the weather is nice, that lush patio makes for a great place to enjoy a few cocktails or glasses of wine, alongside killer pasta dishes, pies, and freshly baked breads. If there’s a wait for a table — and there often is — consider passing the time at Coltivare’s new sister bar next door, EZ’s Liquor Lounge.

Better Luck Tomorrow

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This Heights bar, named after the 2002 Justin Lin movie of the same name, is one of the city’s finest places to grab a casual drink and dinner. Swing by for one of Houston’s best weekend brunches, or dig into a steak sandwich — a saucy, meat-filled handheld built on a kaiser roll — during the week.

Be More Pacific

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This Austin transplant offers Filipino dishes and fusion bites like chicken adobo, lumpia, pork sisig, and even icy, fruity halo-halo, made with local favorite, Amy’s ice cream, served alongside a menu of creative cocktails in a hybrid indoor/outdoor space.

Jūn

Helmed by former Top Chef contender Evelyn Garcia and chef Henry Lu, Jun takes a modern approach to showcasing Southeast Asian flavors, and coins its cuisine “new Asian.” Start with beef tartare with toasted rice, and oysters topped with fermented mango, then try larger plates like the whole fish or fried chicken spiced with Thai chilis and shrimp paste. Cocktails are equally as diverse in flavor. Sip on a Modelo-fueled michelada, crafted with hoisin and fish sauce.

An overhead shot of whole fish, fried chicken, and white rice.
Jūn is one of Houston’s most exciting new restaurants.
Jia Media

Moon Rabbit

This Vietnamese restaurant pairs a menu of soups, salads, sandwiches, spring rolls, and bowls with fun cocktails and a stylish, dimly-lit space. Dishes can be built with savory proteins like honey lime chicken, lemongrass pork, garlic butter shrimp, and spicy fried chicken. For a splurge, try the shaken beef, made with tender pieces of filet mignon and tossed with onion, garlic, and jalapenos.

Squable

When it opened in 2019, Squable, by Justin Yu and Bobby Heugel, quickly made an impression on the neighborhood’s discerning diners. Find excellent dishes like the savory Dutch baby pancake with ricotta and the French cheeseburger showered in raclette, or consider an assortment of veggie-packed plates like poached leeks or acorn squash with blueberry barbecue sauce.

Seven white plates with various dishes atop a wooden table.
Enjoy a spread at Squable.
Jenn Duncan Photography

Goode Co. Kitchen & Cantina

This restaurant may be new to the Heights, but it joins a long list of restaurants operated by the Goodes, one of Houston’s iconic restaurant families known to deliver when it comes to barbecue and Tex-Mex. Like some of its sister restaurants, Goode Co. Kitchen & Cantina features margaritas, made-to-order guacamole, campechana, and Southern favorites like carnitas and redfish on the half-shell.

La Lucha

Next door to his Tex-Mex restaurant Superica, chef Ford Fry’s La Lucha is an ode to Texas cuisine. The creative, sometimes cheeky menu boasts dishes like deviled eggs topped with popcorn shrimp and wood-roasted Gulf oysters, plus, a half or whole fried chicken that is considered some of Houston’s best.

Kin Dee

This glitzy Thai restaurant focuses on noodle dishes from four regions of Thailand, offering meals like ribbony pad see ew, fiery panang curry, and slow-cooked duck breast soup. On the weekends, a DJ takes to the main dining room and the lights are turned down low, offering an extra vibey dining experience.

Roti with egg and curry in a decorative dish.
Find roti guang gai on Kin Dee’s brunch menu.
Alex Montoya

Pinkerton's Barbecue

Houstonians are known to trek far and wide for fantastic barbecue, and one of the city’s most popular destinations for smoked meats is located conveniently in the Heights. Build a meat plate with sliced or chopped beef brisket, jalapeno sausage, and boudin, and add on traditional sides like coleslaw or Southern-style beans, before finishing strong with a helping of Aunt Ruby’s cobbler.

Incanto

New to the Heights neighborhood, Incanto offers a vibrant space for groups to imbibe. Cocktails like the vodka-based Pink Flamingo are presented in playful glassware and are available as singles or for parties of six to eight guests to share. The dishes are also shareable. Incanto’s menu features raw bar items like oysters and ceviche, pizzas, and desserts like toffee cake with espresso mousse.

Heights & Co.

This Heights bar has a full menu and boasts equal parts indoor and outdoor fun. The spacious patio is often crowded on nice weather days, while the indoor bar offers a cozy and intimate alternative. Peruse the small, but mighty list of wines, or spring for an imaginative cocktail like the cucumber vesper or iced bourbon coffee, before noshing on a brisket grilled cheese or steak frites.

An overhead shot of sliders, hot dogs, fries, and a variety of beverages.
A hearty spread at Heights & Co.
CKO Digital

Chi'Lantro

This Austin-based food truck-turned-restaurant’s claim to fame is its original kimchi fries, which skyrocketed in popularity after being featured on ABC’s hit show Shark Tank. The restaurant’s new Heights location is Houston’s first, and locals far and wide have been rushing in to get a taste of the indulgent snack, loaded with meat and toppings. Beyond fries, guests can build-their-own bowls, with bases like salad, rice, and noodles, plus proteins like Korean barbecue or spicy chicken.

Field & Tides

Chef Travis Lenig’s restaurant is the Heights destination for seafood enthusiasts, but that’s not all that’s on offer. If you’re not in the mood for crispy Alabama catfish or she-crab soup, go for the fried chicken piccata, presented with garlic mash, green beans, and lemon caper butter. Save room for dessert — Lenig’s chocolate Alabama stack cake is legendary.

A plate of halibut atop a bed of salad on a white plate.
Field & Tides’s halibut is an entree that won’t dissappoint.
Al Torres Photography

Loro

With locations in Austin and Dallas, Aaron Franklin and Tyson Cole opened the third iteration of their popular Asian smokehouse on West 11th Street and it has quickly become a neighborhood favorite. Visitors can kick off a meal with a frozen cocktail or wine on tap, before indulging in hearty plates like chicken karaage, char siu pork belly, and the popular smoked beef brisket.

Trattoria Sofia

At Ben Berg’s rustic Italian restaurant, careful attention is paid to sourcing quality ingredients directly from Italy, resulting in a menu of full-flavored pizzas and pastas, fragrant with fruity olive oil and rich cheese. Start with a bread basket loaded with ciabatta and semolina, then move on to refreshing crudo and a peppery serving of cacio e pepe.

A plate of pasta with red sauce and topped with shaved parmesan.
Ragu d’agnello at Trattoria Sofia.
Jenn Duncan

Eight Row Flint

Looking to enjoy an expansive outdoor patio, mini tacos, and tailored whiskey flights? Eight Row Flint is the locale for you. The canine-friendly Heights mainstay serves tacos, nachos, wings, and more snacks alongside excellent frozens and a variety of Ranch waters, including the Ranch Rosé, which combines tequila with rosé wine and Topo Chico.

A wood table setting with a variety of plates of food and drinks.
Though Eight Row Flint is best known for its drinks, particularly the Ranch Waters, its food menu is also worth digging into.
Agricole Hospitality

Dinette

The colorful plates at this Vietnamese restaurant are intended to be sharable, but if you decide to hog a few to yourself, no judgment. Get the table started with the crispy fried egg rolls, Pandan fried okra, and the summer rolls, which are served with a sweet peanut butter and jelly sauce, and consider the Vietnamese grilled pizza topped with pork belly, pineapple, and egg. Look no further than one of the restaurant's whimsical cocktails served in festive glasses with tropical garnishes for an Insta-worthy moment.

Related Maps

Maison Pucha Bistro

The Pucha brothers are at the helm of this modern eatery where classic French cuisine is met with flavors inspired by the brothers’ Ecuadorian heritage. Find indulgences like burgundy escargots in espelette garlic butter and seafood-filled bouillabaisse, not to mention shrimp ceviche, wagyu beef empanadas, and the ultra-decadent chocolate souffle.

Da Gama

Husband-and-wife team Shiva Patel and Rick DiVirgilio draw inspiration from their Indian and Portuguese-Italian roots for the menu at Da Gama. Find fusion dishes like lamb keema pizza and peanut chicken tikka, along with Portuguese-style saffron paella, bullet naan, and crab pani puri.

An overhead shot of paella in a paella pan.
Da Gama in M-K-T Heights offers an eclectic combination of Indian and Portuguese flavors.
Ninfa Sanchez

Rakkan Ramen

This national ramen chain, known for building bowls with plant-based broth as a base, has a location inside the M-K-T Heights development. The small restaurant is often filled with ramen-slurping guests, but the menu has a lot more to offer. Enjoy pork pot stickers, brussel sprouts, steamed bao, and spicy tuna sushi bites when you need a ramen alternative.

Handies Douzo

Housed in an old Heights bungalow, this popular hand roll bar fits in neatly with its surroundings and is easy to overlook. Helmed by lauded sushi chefs Patrick Pham and Daniel Lee, the restaurant features a menu of chef-driven hand rolls and sashimi in an intimate setting. With only 26 seats situated around a sushi bar, plan your visit in advance, as reservations can be hard to come by.

Coltivare Pizza & Garden

This charming restaurant churns out piping hot pizza and Italian fare made from fresh produce that’s grown in its very own onsite garden. When the weather is nice, that lush patio makes for a great place to enjoy a few cocktails or glasses of wine, alongside killer pasta dishes, pies, and freshly baked breads. If there’s a wait for a table — and there often is — consider passing the time at Coltivare’s new sister bar next door, EZ’s Liquor Lounge.

Better Luck Tomorrow

This Heights bar, named after the 2002 Justin Lin movie of the same name, is one of the city’s finest places to grab a casual drink and dinner. Swing by for one of Houston’s best weekend brunches, or dig into a steak sandwich — a saucy, meat-filled handheld built on a kaiser roll — during the week.

Be More Pacific

This Austin transplant offers Filipino dishes and fusion bites like chicken adobo, lumpia, pork sisig, and even icy, fruity halo-halo, made with local favorite, Amy’s ice cream, served alongside a menu of creative cocktails in a hybrid indoor/outdoor space.

Related Maps