Houston >Restaurants > Laurier Cafe & Wine
3139 Richmond Ave, Houston, TX | Directions 7709829.733621 -95.426080
Neighborhoods: Central, Greenway/ Upper Kirby
One happy foodie, thanks Cafe Laurier! – Cafe Laurier is small by most restaurant standards, but this little joint does not disappoint in the areas that count. It calls itself New American, but Cafe Laurier's chef uses French techniques, resulting in high quality, artfully prepared cuisine.
On a beautiful sunny day, we were looking for nice patio seating for a girl's lunch out. Think "Sex and the City" style lunch - where would you go? Turns out Cafe Laurier was the perfect place for intimate girl talk and alfresco dining. With royal blue umbrellas and comfortable seating, not to mention a breath of fresh air, the patio was the perfect spot for our rendezvous. We started with the crab cake, 100% pure lump crabmeat, lightly crisped and oh-so-good - one of my favorite dishes here. For entrees we ordered the hangar steak frites, the fresh fish of the day (snapper with lemon butter), and salmon salad. The dishes came artfully presented and everything tasted wonderful! I could not resist my friend's frites and helped her with her dish, while savoring my lightly crisped snapper. The snapper was really delicious, and while I had a bit of steak envy (I try not to eat heavy meals during lunch time), I knew I had chosen well. Quiet and intimate, Cafe Laurier is the perfect little spot for a nice lunch or dinner date, where you can sit and relax and enjoy food that tastes as great as it looks!
Top 10 In Houston – Gary is one of the best cooks in the city. This is a classic chef driven bistro. No frills, just good food and wine in an atmosphere conducive to conversation. On a good weather night the deck makes it even better.
nice – the wine was fine,but the bartender enron lady was rude to us and then tried to cover it up.we appreciate the thought but to late.....
Great French Food, Zero Pretentiousness – The food was of the quality one would hope for at a classy French restaurant - wonderful. The other reviews on this site cover that. I want to write this review of their attitude - which was a breath of fresh air. I knew we were in for a treat when, as the waiter told us the daily specials, he also stated the price! There's nothing that makes me feel more like a poor schmuck trying to fake high-class than being forced to ask how much the special costs - but this staff understood that even at a high-end French cafe, sometimes people are on a budget. Couple that with a very knowledgable staff, especially about wine, and an extremely reasonably-priced wine list. A great spot for a date.
Wonderful Dining Experience – Whether you want to impress, or just have a new place to dine, this is a great spot. Great atmosphere, wonderful ambiance, outstanding service, excellent culinary masterpieces - all the elements of a wonderful experience. The atmosphere is chic, the service is exceptional without being over-bearing and the food is always great with a beautiful presentation. Luxury at affordable prices!
A lunch that made my day! – I went to lunch at Laurier Café one afternoon this month with my co-workers and it was absolutely delicious. I ordered the three cheese grilled cheese sandwich. This was not your mother’s grilled cheese sandwich! It was to die for. The combination of the cheese, along with a side of pommes frites made my afternoon. My colleagues both had entrée size salads, which they said were great. One had some really great quality, seared tuna and the other had a warm chicken salad with endive, pears, walnuts and blue cheese. The crowd seemed to be a combination of River Oaks ladies who lunch and business people from the Greenway Plaza area, plus the three of us from Midtown. It was good food, in a comfortable and friendly setting, and I plan to go back.
Kinda Odd and Uncomfortable – We all heard this was a good spot to take clients with supposedly great food. Our waiter, bless his heart, was rude. He was shaking and sweating and interupted our client as she was talking. He made it clear to the couple of people who talked while he went over the menu that he was having to repeat himself. It was just very odd and uncomfortable. Then it took a very long time to get our food. We had a sampling of many dishes. The carrot soup looked great but didn't taste like carrots. The Gumbo looked great but there was no feedback to that effect. I ordered the salad with chicken, pears, endive and goat cheese. The chicken tasted off, I couldn't place the taste, the endive was bitter which is too be expected but the pears, vinegrette, walnuts, it just didn't work. Those are all my very favorite tastes so it was odd. Long story short, no one at the table was impressed and unfortunately we will not be returning for another client lunch. The room is loud but looks very nice and we saw many people who seemed to be enjoying there meal. Maybe this was just a fluke or bad timing............or maybe not.
Great Customer Service – Obviously you have never worked in a fine dining restaurant before otherwise you would have been competent to know what was going on.
High expectations were not met – After reviewing the online menu, I was very anxious to try out this restaurant...several dishes had my mouth watering and the fact that it's so tiny is always intriguing to see "what's inside". Upon entering, we were greeted by a very incompenent hostess who looked frazzeled and nervous to be helping us...not the best face to front your business. Shortly after being seated we looked around and noticed we were the only people in the 25-45 age group in the place - so it must typically attract an older crowd. We reviewed the menu - again loving what we saw. For starters, my friend ordered the onion soup and I had the goat cheese salad. The soup was not at all what we were expecting - it was like chicken broth with carmelized onions in it - not bad, but just strange. My salad was delicious - definitely recommend it. We both indulged in the Red Wine Braised Short Ribs (I'm a huge fan of braised short ribs - so make a habit of getting them anytime they are on a menu!) We waited an awful long time between our first and second course (our waiter was MIA for most of the time). But when the short-ribs arrived they were cooked to perfection and served with some sort of turnip/spinach concoction. The flavor of the meat was LACKING - albiet very moist and cooked wonderfully, I had to salt it to death to enjoy it. There was no starch served with the meal, which left us still hungry after the meal (which I really dislike). We shared the chocolate cake for dessert which was divine - really loved it. We waited again, an absurd amount of time for our check to come which is never a good way to end the night. We actually saw one couple get up to go ask for their waiter (who was also ours as well) so they could pay and leave (never good). For what we paid for this meal (about $50 a person with tip and tax and one glass of wine each) we were definitely overall disappointed. Bad service, leaving hungry, and underseasoned meat always leave a bad taste in my mouth...
Inconsistant Food, Rude Management – A friend and I went for dinner and ordered the same thing - steak medium to medium rare. When the food came out hers was medium and mine was extra-well to shoe leather - black all the way to the center. I mentioned it to the very attentive waiter and he said he'd wondered about that when he was bringing it out. He took it back without further question. The replacement steak was medium well at best and the pommes frites were totally over cooked and cold - as if the chef had pulled them out of the bottom of the fryer from last night. I was not willing to be a repeat complainer, and no one asked how it was, so I ate the middle portion of the steak and the 4-5 fries that were closer to tan than brown.
After we'd paid our bill I thought I should say something, so I told the waiter how dissapointed I had been and that truely the food was sub-par. He walked away and I could see that he was discussing, if not arguing, with the bartender. We waited about 5 minutes and then gave up. On the way out I saw a man in chefs clothes behind the bar. I asked if there were a manager I could talk to and he said I should just talk to him. As I described my evening he just said "yeah, yeah, yeah." At the end he said, "so the problem is that your waiter did not bother to tell us you were unhappy with your food?" I tried to re-explain that the service was actually good (perhaps the highlight of the evening) it was the food that was the problem and furthermore, sending back the first plate should have been warning enough. His next statement was "so what do you want from me?" I simply replied that I thought he would want to know that the food being served was frankly unacceptable and that we would not be returning. At no point was anyone at all apologetic.
Pass on this one - there are better places to eat in Houston.
Love This Place – Wonderful food. Great service. A wine list to die for.
This is one of those restaurants conducive to intimate conversation. Whether it be with your grown daughter, your BFF, or your love. The ambience and attitude is positive without being intrusive. The menu choices are imaginative and for the most part, they work!
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