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Dallas Morning News
Fearless Critic restaurant review
Upmarket restaurant

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

Features Date-friendly, good wines, outdoor dining, veg-friendly, Wi-Fi
Bar Beer, wine, liquor
Credit cards Visa, MC, AmEx
Reservations Accepted


Upper Kirby
2502 Algerian Way
Houston, TX
(713) 581-6101
Philosophy and execution meet up in small plates and a lovely beverage program

Haven claims to be Houston’s first certified-green restaurant. We could stop there and still respect it substantially, but fortunately, we don’t have to.

Start with buttery, crusty Parker House rolls spiked with Gulf sea salt; or end with them, in the form of what must be Houston’s best bread pudding. Deviled farm-fresh eggs are even better with the $1 extra bowfin caviar on top. Generally, sides and starters seem to be the most reliable orders: exquisite al dente peas, slow-cooked grits, and a bacon spätzle teeming with hallucinogenic flavor. People rave about corndog shrimp with Tabasco rémoulade, and for good reason. Mains tend to be weaker, sometimes with tougher meats and flatter flavors.

Greenness aside, the cavernous room represents a chic and humorless genre of modern fine dining, although the prodigious use of reclaimed wood gives it an elemental sense of benevolence. That benevolence extends to the unbelievably well-priced wine list, which features several food-friendly, terroir-driven bottles (choose after you’ve ordered your food; there are some potential trouncers here). Beware the glass selections, culled from the weaker bottles on the list. As any self-respecting restaurant in Houston would, Haven has employed Anvil’s help in creating its cocktail program, and many of these make great food pairings for the wine-weary. Haven’s good attitude, meanwhile, provides respite for the world-weary.

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