Chatter’s Café and Bistro on South Heights near Washington serves styled-up New American cuisine, which borrows flavors and ingredients from across the globe to create something entirely new. That means it’s possible to work through a heaping plate of Asian-inflected stir fry alongside a gyro plate, or tuck into an order of Creole mustard salmon while your dining partner opts for the housemade lasagna. That’s just how eclectic the menu is at Chatter’s. Large groups will have no problem satisfying everyone’s cravings, and with indoor and outdoor seating, there’s plenty of room for all. The hefty brunch menu unveils itself on Saturdays and Sundays, making for a variety of egg dishes and breakfast starches that satisfy weekend revelers.
At Federal American Grill, you should always feel welcome to come as you are. The restaurant's style and menu speak to a broad variety of tastes, from the guy who wants to order a beer and Texas wagyu cheeseburger to the group who would prefer bone-marrow appetizers, diver scallops, and a bottle of 15-year cabernet poured directly into the goblet they carry everywhere. In fact, guests can skip the meal altogether and head straight to the bar to indulge in craft cocktails such as a Violette Fix with rum, pomegranate, and cr?me de violette. Or they can sample one of eight flights composed of bourbons, whiskeys, and scotches. If you find yourself dropping by on a weekend morning, take your pick from a curious mix of brunch dishes that includes kung pow calamari and short-rib benedict.
Chefs inside the Daily Review Cafe's kitchen artfully mold American cuisine into elegant, contemporary renditions of traditional comfort food. The low-carb and standard dinner menus flaunt that culinary marriage in a spread that includes southern fried chicken as well as filet mignon. At brunch on Saturday and Sunday, the chefs give diners sweet and savory options for starting the day by stuffing french toast with cream cheese and nestling crab cakes beside eggs. Chefs pass off the entrées to servers who ferry them to the spacious dining room or to the porch, which overlooks a brick patio surrounded by colorful garden foliage. The patio holds 20 to 100 guests and hosts events including private parties, where Daily Review's food shines alongside expertly mixed drinks from the bar.
Onion Creek draws its culinary influences from all corners of the American South. Brisket tacos with scrambled eggs are a highlight at breakfast, and seasonal crawfish headline the weekend menu. The milk and eggs are harvested locally, as are the organic offerings available at the Saturday farmers' market.
Seasonal Ingredients | New American Cuisine | New Orleans–Style Patio | Vegetarian and Gluten-Free Menus
Where to Sit: When the weather's warm, recline beneath a canopy of umbrellas and camphor trees on the New Orleans–style back patio. On chilly nights, head to one of this cozy eatery's upstairs dining rooms for a table by the fireplace.
When to Go: For some live jazz, swing by on Sunday morning, when the Bob Chadwick Trio creates a hip soundtrack for the bustling brunch crowd.
If You Can’t Make It, Try This: Hugo Ortega, the executive chef at Backstreet Café, also mans the stove at Hugo’s (1600 Westheimer Road), a go-to destination for regional Mexican cuisine.
As a community icehouse for more than 30 years, Beaver’s doesn’t look very far for ingredients to serve their neighborhood clientele. Housemade Texas strawberry preserves spiked with Pimm’s sweeten the Gin n’ Jam, and rye whiskey smoked in-house strengthens a potent Smoky Julep. Similarly, the menu includes drunken Texas chili made from local meat, coffee, and beer.