Culture / Restaurants

Where to Eat on Christmas and Christmas Eve in Houston: The Best Restaurants Open and What’s on the Menu

BY // 12.23.16

We all know the holiday season is the best — and the absolutely most stressful — time of the year. You have to find the perfect gifts for loved ones, decorate the house with a plethora of Christmas novelties, and make sure your dear old Uncle Henry doesn’t starve.

To help take some of the weight off the shoulders of holiday hosts and hostesses, PaperCity has put together a list of the 20 best Houston restaurants open on Christmas Eve and/or Christmas Day. Who says you have to eat at home for the holidays?

These Christmas restaurants make any holiday more jolly.

1. Crú Wine Bar
: 2800 Kirby Drive

Crú is offering Houstonians an escape on Christmas Eve with a specialty menu, $40 three-course meal. From noon to 11 p.m., patrons can enjoy holiday-inspired appetizers like Pumpkin Mascarpone Ravioli, or an entree of Filet Mignon with truffle potato gratin.

There’s no need to skip dessert — it is Christmas, after all. Shamelessly indulge in Crú’s Egg Nog Crème Brulee.

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Kick it at Cru this Christmas Eve.

2. La Fisheria
213 Milam Street

For Christmas Eve, La Fisheria is serving a special menu, as well as complimentary hot fruit punch, to guests. If you’re gluten sensitive or intolerant, don’t worry. The majority of La Fisheria’s holiday menu is gluten free. Try the Huacinango A La Veracruzana (grilled red snapper with tomato, olives, and “güero” pepper sauce), or the homemade Sope De Camarón with refried beans, shrimps and potatoes al ajillo, avocado, red radish, and fried leek.

3. Le Colonial
4444 Westheimer Rd G-140

While passing through the River Oaks District to admire the rows of lighted trees, stop by Le Colonial for Christmas. The specials include asparagus and crabmeat soup with king trumpet mushrooms and wok-seared gulf shrimp and sea scallions with chilis and lemongrass. Sit outside on the beautiful patio to get a seat with a view of the festive lights.

4. La Table
1800 Post Oak Boulevard #6110

If you want to get a seat at La Table’s Christmas Eve brunch, you may be a little too late. The restaurant is completely booked for its Brunch with Santa event. The event lets kids leave with a gingerbread house and a picture with Santa, and adults get a free mimosa.

While there is a reservation wait list for this $49 per person meal — same price for adults and kids — I wouldn’t plan your day around it.

5. Holley’s Seafood Restaurant & Oyster Bar
Address: 3201 Louisiana St

Holley’s chef is preparing a meal of the restaurant’s “greatest hits” for Christmas Eve. The tasting menu is $65 per person for six courses consisting of favorites like the Lobster Ceviche, LH Gumbo, Seafood Mezcal Martini, Blackened Grouper, Chicory Dusted Beef Tenderloin, and the Trio of Southern Desserts, which includes the Down South Coconut Cake, Pipe’s Apple Pie Bread Pudding, and White Velvet Cheesecake. Make sure the family comes hungry….

6. The Four Seasons Hotel
Address: 1300 Lamar Street

Staying in a hotel on Christmas can be a bummer and a hassle, but Quattro Restaurant at the Four Seasons downtown gives out of towners and locals alike a worthy meal option. It is hosting Christmas Eve and Christmas Day buffets on the third floor of the hotel.

The Christmas Eve dinner runs from 5:30 to 10 p.m. Saturday and costs $65 per adult and $32 per child, but there are a only have a couple of open reservation slots still available. The Christmas Day brunch buffet goes all day Sunday — and it will boast more than 60 different items from a caviar station to a chocolate fountain.

The price is as lofty as the ambitions. It is $95 for adults and $42 for children.

7. Urban Eats
3414 Washington Avenue

While any old place can offer dinner, Urban Eats will serve a special brunch from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. on Christmas Eve. The restaurant offers traditional feel-good dishes that are made in-house, like the Brasserie Eggs Benedict and Breakfast Naan.

8. State of Grace
Address: 3258 Westheimer Rd

River Oaks hotspot State of Grace will be open on Christmas Eve, offering its regular dinner menu during its normal business hours (5 to 11 p.m.) Dinner dishes include Oak Roasted Oysters, Deviled Crab, Pork Chop Schnitzel, and Pan Roasted Gulf Flounder.

Who wouldn’t want a view of State of Grace’s Oyster Bar this holiday season?

9. Le Mistral
Address: 1400 Eldridge Parkway

French restaurant Le Mistral offers a four-course dinner on Christmas Eve for $90 from 5 to 11 p.m. The courses include treats like a mini main lobster roll on a butter brioche, Veloutē de Châtaignes, Morue Moire, and Chateubrian Farci aux Champignons Sauvages.

10. Charivari
Address: 2521 Bagby St

Finally. Something open on Christmas Day! Charivari, an Eastern European restaurant is open from noon to 8 p.m. on the big Sunday. Enjoy dishes like Icelandic Cod Filet, Piedmontese Flat Iron Steak, Lamb Chops “Sierra Nevada,” and a special Christmas duck with apple red cabbage and potato pancake au jus.

11. Peska Seafood Culture
Address: 1700 Post Oak Blvd

Uptown restaurant Peska Seafood Culture is serving its 12 best dishes of 2016 for Christmas Eve. Among the a la carte dozen is the fan favorite of the Half-and-Half Fried Snapper, which is a entire Gulf of Mexico red snapper, butterflied with half talla and half moho sauce.

For dessert, try the Crema Catalana, which is a vanilla infused brûlée with coconut gelato and raspberries. Seating begins at noon and stops at 6 p.m., so it’s wise to make a reservation.

12. Coppa Osteria
Address: 5210 Morningside Drive

Coppa Osteria in Rice Village is honoring the beloved Italian tradition of festa dei sette pesci or “The Feast of the Seven Fishes.” On Christmas Eve from 5 to 11 p.m. for $45 per person, you’ll get a vast array of different types of fish and one Italian dessert. The fish featured on this menu includes Olive Oil Poached Tuna, Marinated Mussels, and Fra Diavolo (charred octopus).

13. B&B Butchers
1814 Washington Ave

Houston isn’t exactly awash in door-to-door Christmas carolers — at least, not in my neighborhood. But if you’re looking for dinner and a show, B&B Butchers will be open Christmas Eve with the regular menu available, and carolers will be spreading Christmas cheer from 8 to 9 p.m. Reservations are filling up quickly.

14. Camerata at Paulie’s
Address: 1834 Westheimer Rd.

Camerata at Paulie’s invites you to unwind on Christmas Eve from 4 pm. to 2 a.m. with warm, homemade mulled wine, cider and the restaurant’s famous sugar cookies from Paulie’s next door. Classic Christmas movies like Home Alone will be projected on the wall starting at 7 p.m.

Patrons can enjoy 50 percent off all Camerata’s ciders and 20 percent off all bottles of wine if one comes baring a Christmas ornament for the bar’s tree.

15. Arthur Ave.
Address: 1111 Studewood Street

If you’re in the mood for some Italian-American cuisine, Arthur Ave. is open for cena on Christmas Eve. Grab the folks to enjoy their traditional dinner menu, with dishes like an Antipasti Platter, Gnocchi Verde and the Pesce Del Giorno.

16. Brenner’s Steakhouse
10911 Katy Fwy

Brenner’s Steakhouse in Katy and Brenner’s on the Bayou on Birdsall Street are both offering dining options on Christmas Eve and Christmas Day. Brenner’s on the Bayou is open 5 to 10:30 p.m. on Christmas Eve and from 4 to 9 p.m. on Christmas Day. At the original Brenner’s Steakhouse, brunch is available on Christmas Day from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m., and the dinner menu will be served from 4 to 10 p.m.

17. Ritual
Address: 602 Studewood St

Ritual in the Heights is open all day on Christmas Eve, but the restaurant is offering a prix-fixe menu from 5 to 9 p.m. This is a three course meal for $65 per person, reservation only. With each course, one can choose from dishes such as the Maple Winter Squash Bisque, the Duck Breast with smoked Indian creek mushrooms and the Boudin Stuffed Pork Chop with a creole mustard reduction.

18. Helen Greek Food and Wine
Address: 2429 Rice Boulevard

Helen Greek Food and Wine in Rice Village will be open on Christmas Eve, offering its regular dinner menu from 4 to 11 p.m. The menu includes Greek classics such as the Greens-N-Cheese Pies, made with phyllo, four greens and Greek cheeses, the Grilled Lamb Chops, and Cypriot Meatballs.

Go Greek this Christmas at Helen in Rice Village.

19. Etoile Cuisine Et Bar
1101-11 Uptown Park Blvd

Oo la la! On Christmas Eve in Uptown Park, French restaurant Etoile Cuisine Et Bar is preparing a two-course feast and dessert that will run you $65 per person. Indulge in Tartare De Saumon Frais Et Fumé (fresh and smoked salmon tartaro with mango, cucumber, and fresh herbs) or the Cochon De Lait Confit (suckling pig crispy-fondant paired with truffle pommes mousseline, sweet apple, mushrooms, snow peas, and port wine syrup).

20. White Oak Kitchen + Drinks
5011 Westheimer at Post Oak

After opening presents on Christmas Day, head down to White Oak Kitchen for brunch from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. and dinner from 4 to 10 p.m. Entrees include roasted turkey, French toast, and smoked salmon benedict; starters include holiday goat cheese salad.

For dessert, what’s better than s’mores bread pudding. The three-course meal costs $45 per person.

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