You have a cellar's worth of wine -- fancy bottles, special occasion bottles, that obscure label that you have yet to try. Or maybe you just love browsing the aisles at your local wine shop and want a place where you can enjoy the wine with friends and food. If you are looking for places to BYOB in Houston, this guide's for you.
Nestled in the middle of a strip mall (the Welcome Center) on Ranchester at Bellaire, family-run Shanghai gets consistently high ratings from the Fearless Critic, and was just named one of the top Chinese restaurants in the US by Travel & Leisure magazine. The salted spicy pork spareribs are a must order, as well as the chive flower with XO calamari, and the Peking Duck. And, it's BYOB.
La Vista has a cult following as one of the most wine friendly restaurants in town. Offering BYOB with modest corkage fee, it's a great place to gather with friends and enjoy your favorite wines. The bread here is to-die-for, so all you Atkins dieters, beware. The mussels are a slam-dunk, with some of the BEST garlic butter broth I've tasted.The meat dishes here are generally the star, and what good is BYOB red wine if it's not washed down with a tasty bite of red meat? So, I say skip the pasta, skip the pizza, order some meat, enjoy it with whatever vino is your pleasure, and wash it all down with great friendship and conversation. La Vista is the bomb!
At Lucio's, one of the big draws is that you can BYOB with a corkage of just $5. Get the crab cakes with mango salsa to start, and the U10 scallops with butternut squash risotto -- always good, and even better with your own wine.
It's a smorgasbord of the senses! When u walk in, the freshly made pita will greet you. Most platters with 3 sides and a meat will run about $11. Pick your meat, slide your tray down as your eyes feast on the hot and cold offerings. Chicken kebabs are solid, hot eggplant sidedish is my fave. The fresh juices --watermelon, strawberry, mango--are fantastic and a must, but you are also welcome to BYOB.
Himalaya is nothing fancy from the outside or the inside, but it attracts hard core foodies and chefs because of the delicious fare by chef and owner, Kaiser Lashkari. The goat byrani is a must, but put your trust in the owner, and he will not guide you wrong. And, it's BYOB.
If there's one thing to get here, it's definitely the civap, a Bosnian meatball-type sandwich made with house baked bread and served with this sweet condiment. This fast-casual place also let's you BYOB.
Formerly Raia's, Polovina is offers solid, mainstream Italian dishes right in the heart of Washington Avenue. On nice evenings, grab a seat on the patio, and start with their shrimp and crab claws sauteed in white wine butter sauce. Pizzas are thin-crust if you want something to hold onto, and pastas are very good as well. And you can't go wrong with BYOB and a $5 corkage.
Where can you go for a great pizza, and wash it down with your own choice of Italian vino? Luigi's, that's where. This unpretentious place, with it's menu scribbled on a blackboard, red checked vinyl tablecloths and simple interior, offers excellent New York Style pizza that you can enjoy while you BYOB.
This clean modern Vietnamese restaurant in EaDo generally makes great fare, like their pan fried rice noodles (pho ap chao) and duck salad. BYOB.
Ask a sommelier where they go when they want to BYOB, and chances are, they'll mention Jonathan's The Rub. The small place gets packed with people waiting for tables, but the food is delicious (their burger won the Houston Press Burger Bracket in 2012) and it's well worth the wait.
Delectable, thin-crust, 12" pizza's so good, you'll want to hoard one all to yourself. Authentic Neopolitan style pizza in a small friendly mom & pop environment. Family friendly and BYOB with no corkage.
A fave of local chefs, the red oil wontons (not to be confused with red oil dumplings) are to die for. Other faves include arctic surf clams, mala beef jerky, garlic bacon, water boiled fish (spicy), the dan dan noodles or cold sesame noodles. Beware of things marked extra spicy. Byob. 5% off if u pay cash.
Chris Sheperd's new restaurant is an homage to all things local. Get the house butchered pork chop or shared whole fish in iron skillet. You can order a bottle of wine or bring one that's not on the list and pay a $15 corkage. Menu changes daily according to what's available. The goat and kim chi braised dumplings are a must order. You can always find chefs hanging out here.
Cafe TH has become one of the darlings of the restaurant industry and the revitalized East Downtown (EaDo) scene. It has a lot to do with Minh Nguyen, the young, smiling owner, who is chef, server, busboy, cash-register person, and one of the best front-of-the-house guys you'll ever meet. The vegan curry is delicious, as are the fresh vermicelli bowls. On Thursday and Friday evenings, he ups the mood with a thoughtful playlist, dimmed lights, whitecloth table service, and three-course prix-fixe. And, it's BYOB.