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Dallas Morning News
Fearless Critic restaurant review
Upmarket restaurant

Mon–Thu 11:30am–11:00pm
Fri 11:30am–midnight
Sat 5:00pm–midnight
Sun 5:00pm–10:00pm

Features Date-friendly
Bar Beer, wine, liquor
Credit cards Visa, MC, AmEx
Reservations Accepted


1658 Westheimer Rd.
Houston, TX
(713) 523-3800
Mark’s American Cuisine
A good meal lies within these elegant walls, somewhere beneath these elegant prices

Mark’s is set in a 1920s brick church, and boasts seasonal and often local ingredients—this description alone suggests the sort of DIY, repurpose-obsessed sincerity that characterizes so many newer, hipper restaurants. But instead of untreated pine tables sanded by bearded twentysomethings with visions of Brooklyn, there’s a more (ahem) seasoned and conservative approach. Graceful lines gently balance deco with Protestantism, and muted orange walls envelope you with warmth and calm—a remarkable feat given the high ceilings.

In the past, we’ve found the menu peppered with adjectives and boasts that did little for us on the palate, but recent visits have yielded expertly cooked and artfully layered dishes that we’d return for. Pork has been especially masterful, in any preparation, and ingredients taste fresh and high quality. Some dishes (lobster tail and nearly anything crab-related) deliver a scarcity of experience that’s almost exponential to its soaring cost; others are surprising and aptly priced, layering flavors cleanly and creatively.

The only abject failure is an outdated, showboating wine list. It’s nearly impossible to drink well here for less than $120. At least the glass of Veuve Clicquot Yellow Label has been knocked down from a heinous $28 to a merely criminal $26. Well, look around the award-crusted anteroom: obviously Wine Spectator is impressed. (Then again, with just $250 and a SASE, we won that award, too.)

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