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El Meson
El Meson

El Meson Details

  • Dining Style: Casual Dining
  • Website: http://www.elmeson.com
  • Phone: (713) 522-9306
  • Hours of Operation: Lunch: Monday - Saturday: 11:00am - 5:00pm, Sunday: 12:00pm - 5:00pm; Dinner: Daily: 5:00pm - 10:00pm
  • Payment Options: AMEX, Discover, MasterCard, Visa
  • Cuisine: Spanish, Cuban
  • Executive Chef: Peter A. Garcia
  • Dress Code: Casual Dress
  • Accepts Walk-Ins: Yes
  • Additional Details: Bar Dining, Beer, Full Bar, Non-Smoking Restaurant, Private Room, Takeout, Wine
  • Private Party Facilities: The Havana Room seats up to 28 guests for private dinners and is available Sunday through Thursday. Minimum charge for the private dinner is $1,200.00 which includes food and beverage. A 50% deposit in advance is required for reservation. The deposit is refundable upon cancellation 48 hours prior to the event. Business lunch reservations are also available with no minimum charge required. 20% Gratuity is added to the total. Multi course wine and food pairings are available. Chef Pedro is also a Certified Sommelier and he will be happy to personally consult with you on the menu preparation. Visit our website for more details.
  • Private Party Contact: Regina Garcia (713) 522-9306
  • Entertainment: Flamenco guitarist Randy Cordero performs every Wednesday night at El Meson. Cordero has studied with such prestigious guitarists as Rene Heredia, Paco Garrigues "El Chatarrero", Chuscales, Jose Luis Rodriguez, Pedro Cuadra and Domingo Rubichi. No cover.

Getting there

  • Cross Street: Kirby
  • Parking: Valet
A word from El Meson
This cozy neighborhood eatery offers classic Spanish and Cuban cuisine in a casual atmosphere. El Meson Restaurant is located in the heart of The Village, a quaint, pedestrian-friendly shopping and dinning district, a short distance away from downtown, the museums and the Medical Center. El Meson features an award winning wine list offering the largest selection of Spanish wine in Texas and a temperature-controlled wine cellar housing vintage wines, all modestly priced. The House Specialty, La Paella del Meson, saffron flavored Valencian rice with poultry, meats and seafood, is offered in a variety of ways and is custom prepared to order. The grill features fresh Prime New York Strip, Rib Chop, Beef Tenderloin and fresh Australian Lamb Chops, served with a roasted red pepper - port reduction sauce.Continued
Foodspotting photos
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Diner Reviews
  • "Saturday evening with 6:00pm reservation - party of 2. Seated promptly. Ordered two bottles of Spanish red wine. Asked if it was maintained in a wine chiller. The reply was no - it is at room temp. Room temp in Houston Texas is 72 degrees plus, in northern Spain is much less. Red wine should be stored at 58 degrees. Ordered Tapas - jamon serrano/chorizo/manchego, garlic mushrooms, bacon wrapped dates, and scallops. The flavor was adequate, not great. Jamon Serrano did not taste authentic. Scallops were very disappointing - only 2 served and were not cook correctly - lacked flavor. Flan for dessert with Café con Leche con Baileys. Again, very average. Bill was $205 with tip. Too much tex-mex offerings: chips, salsa, nachos, quesadillas, etc."
    Dined on 7/26/2014
  • "We are local fans of El Meson, where you are always assured of a good meal and pleasant service without any attitude. The seafood is from the Gulf and fresh. I love the way they prepare vegetables, from the sautéed spinach to the mushrooms. And an interesting wine list for any preference. No wonder it's been in business for so long!"
    Dined on 7/22/2014
  • "Been coming here for years. Food is always consistently good. Love the wide variety of options. Service is usually very good as well. Great sangria and the salsa is spicy and served warm."
    Dined on 7/16/2014
  • "Went for business dinner. Excellent paella and cocktails. Only area for service improvement was when I asked for a little bit more time to ollk at the menu, the waiter never came back and we finally had to motion to someone else that we were ready to order. Over all I would still recommend but never if you are pushed for time. We did go on a slow night."
    Dined on 6/25/2014
  • "Solid lunch menu with good Cuban staples (black beans & rice, plantains). In the evening it can be crowded and noisy. Lunch time - not so crowded; quiet."
    Dined on 6/18/2014
  • "El Meson is one of my faves in Houston for many reasons: the food, the wine and the service. 1. the food - EXTENSIVE menu. Big selection of tapas, meals, desserts, etc. Lots to choose from, and unlike many places with an extensive menu, I still have not found anything they do poorly. Good for family style and sharing, as well. 2. the wine - great wine list. enough said. 3. the service - our servers were helpful without being pushy and always there to offer suggestions when asked."
    Dined on 6/17/2014
  • "We went here on a coworker's recommendation and we were not disappointed. The service was good. Attentive, but not hovering. The food was great, the flavor memorable. We will be back."
    Dined on 6/6/2014
  • "First time to this place. Good food, but the most enjoyable part was the attentive service by Lupe."
    Dined on 5/31/2014
  • "We started with the Patatas Bravas for our tapas appetizer. It was fabulous. Just as good if not better than what I had eaten on a recent trip to Barcelona. this was followed by perfectly crusty warm bread butter and a very light mixed baby lettuce salad with a refreshing dressing. Then came the house special paella which was beautifully presented. King prawns, large shrimp, Iberian chorizo, baby octopus, mussels, calamari, and chicken in the saffron rice. It was excellent. Had to try a dessert so we ordered the flan to share with cappucino. It was very fresh and perfectly prepared. A memorable feast. "
    Dined on 5/31/2014
  • "Very pleasant experience. Would have enjoyed more with better waiter. Just happened to get a less experienced waiter. Menu great, a taste of Cuba, Spain & Mexico. Had a nice Spanish wine & Sangria. All reasonbly priced. We'll go back."
    Dined on 5/29/2014
  • "The waiter could not understand our appetizer order, even though we repeated it 3 times. He kept repeating the order back to us incorrectly and we kept correcting him. He delivered nachos made to his specifications. I did not accept them. Before the appetizers were delivered, John asked for our entree order and we requested the entrees be delivered after we had finished our appetizers. Of course the main courses came out before our appetizer were delivered. The waiter spent most of his time at the greeter's stand with the new greeter employee."
    Dined on 5/24/2014
  • "You can get a reservation online for a place with a friendly atmosphere, good service and excellent food."
    Dined on 5/18/2014
  • "The food was terrible. In addition, it was Mother's Day and we ordered the Mother's Day special. Very expensive and easily the worst food I have ever eaten at a restaurant. The entire table agreed. Never again. This was money down the drain."
    Dined on 5/11/2014
  • "My wife and I love this place. The food is consistently excellent and the ambiance is nice. "
    Dined on 5/9/2014
  • "Is a wonderful place for dinner or small event. I had my daughter'a first communion lunch here and it was Wonderful. We have dinner here about once every two months and always enjoy our experience."
    Dined on 5/3/2014
  • "We eat here often and really love the food and the quiet atmosphere. The wait staff are always courteous and attentive. Great for dinner for two as well as business gatherings."
    Dined on 4/6/2014
  • "Traditional Cuban Spanish recipes... Was with a person that is from PR and he says very traditional fare.. All I know is that all tapas were great... Also gluten free items are taken very seriously"
    Dined on 4/4/2014
  • "Went to El Meson with a group of co-workers and had a lovely time. Food here is consistently good and it's never too crowded. Can't get enough of that white rice!"
    Dined on 4/3/2014
  • "El Meson is a wonderful restaurant. The service is always top-notch, and Friday night was no different. However, we believe the paella (we ordered the Paella Del Meson) has changed. It was very soggy, almost like a thick porridge. NOT how Spanish paella should be. There was no crispy bottom to the rice. After we got home everyone experienced a similar headache, the kind you get when you ingest too much MSG. Since the only thing we ordered were the ceviche (watery) and the paella, well, Occam's Razor would tell you that it was probably in either of those two. We are very MSG-sensitive."
    Dined on 3/28/2014
  • "This was a great spot while shopping in the rice village. Ceviche and gazpacho was very good. The egg drop soup was far too salty, we couldn't eat it. The flan was wonderful! Great attentive service."
    Dined on 3/18/2014
  • "There is a reason why this restaurant has been in business for many years. The food and wine were excellent (ask the waiter for recommendations). The Latin American emphasis includes the wine list, which includes nice Chilean vintages in place of more common French ones. The only downside is trying to find parking in the busy Village shopping area, but convenient valet parking is available."
    Dined on 3/13/2014
  • "The food was delicious, and the service was spot on! It was a bit quiet when we first arrived, but some more people started arriving about halfway through our meal. The bathroom had a terrible odor that you could smell in the hallway. It was an old stench like something is wrong with the drainage or sewer."
    Dined on 3/11/2014
  • "We ordered the Paella El Meson for two. It was great and the portions even seemed smaller than before; which left room for dessert. The creme brulee was unimpressive. I ordered an americano, which was good, but was not offered a refill; I guess they are not free. The restaurant seems to be confusing too many latin themes: spanish, cuban, mexican. We were offered tortilla chips and salsa at the beginning; this was new and unexpected. The bread was great, but it should have come earlier, instead of the chips. They should focus, probably on spanish cuisine. (I once ordered a cuban dish and was disappointed.)"
    Dined on 3/8/2014
  • "Excellent service. Comfortable tables. Extensive menu of Tapas, Paellas and many other great dishes. Many tequila choices as well. Always enjoyable."
    Dined on 3/6/2014
  • "Had a bad experience last time but you made me believe again! Love this place!"
    Dined on 3/1/2014
  • "Great service with interesting menu. Sort of Cuba meets Spain meets South America via Tex Mex."
    Dined on 2/21/2014
  • "I was pleased with the restaurant's menu and preparation. Service was very good and timely. Enjoyable."
    Dined on 2/19/2014
  • "Went to El Meson to enjoy the Tapas menu. Three different items I wished to order were not available."
    Dined on 2/15/2014
  • "Visited for a late lunch on a Saturday. While my wife had the Lechon Asado, I had the Bacalao en Salsa Verde. Of course we sampled each others plate. Both dishes were outstanding. Well worth the price. Service was well above average and very attentive. Very comforable enviroment. Looking forward to returning and trying more of their dishes. For dessert, had the Arroz con Leche. Another winner. El Meson was a fantastic find and experience for us. I've already recommended it to several friends and will continue to do so."
    Dined on 2/15/2014
  • "Ordinarily I think the service is good, but not this night. They seemed too busy. Our waiter neglected us. The food was very good."
    Dined on 2/9/2014
  • "As always the good was great. Service was slow at the beginning but got better as the evening progressed."
    Dined on 2/7/2014
  • "I've been in this restaurant several times. The food and the service are very good. The wine list is other history. They only have the wines on the list. They don’t have several. Last time I had to ordered 5 to get one. This is not the first time that happened with me. An ambient renovation would be great."
    Dined on 2/1/2014
  • "We visit El Meson about once every month. We usually get outstanding service and the food is always amazing. This time, my husband ordered a sipping tequila before we ordered tapas. I ordered water and we were given a full bottle of water for our table, which I quickly drank (I'm not drinking alcohol for 35 days). We ordered our food and received it and then our waiter (Lupe) never returned for 20 minutes to ask if my husband wanted another drink and I never got a refill on water. We were willing to spend more on tapas and drinks for him. We had to ask another waiter to get our waiter to bring our check to us. Then our waiter came to the table and said, "the other water said you were upset with me" ."
    Dined on 1/25/2014
  • "I had a great experience. Went here to celebrate my boyfriend's birthday and had some special seating requests. The restaurant was able to accommodate me with ease and provide a tasty birthday cake for the celebrant! Food was on point - I ordered the Ropa Vieja and my boyfriend ordered the Medallones (very tender and flavorful!). They really made our night special!"
    Dined on 1/25/2014
  • "Always an enjoyable evening with good food and service."
    Dined on 1/22/2014
  • "Service was prompt, friendly and efficient. The proprieter spent time with us explaining the menu and the extensive wine list and guided us towards selections that exceeded our expectations. Great stuff!!"
    Dined on 1/20/2014
  • "The restaurant seems to have gone thru a modest renovation of its interior sometime in the last couple of years, moving away from the more quaint style suggesting old Spanish colonial to a more subtle modern style - it remains an attractive and comfortable setting. The dishes are consistently tasty and well-presented. The wine list is respectable. For the moderate pricing, it is the best you can get in Houston. The service is efficient and appropriately friendly (earnest, not overly familiar). It has the added advantage of a storefront that does not face a huge parking lot, making the view out the huge windows a pleasant experience, along with the option for an after dinner stroll along a lively street (an option rare in Houston)."
    Dined on 1/18/2014
  • "The food and service were excellent. I have already recommended El Meson to friends."
    Dined on 1/10/2014
  • "El Meson continues to please on all levels. Excellent service, superb cuisine, great wines. This is a great place for a multi course wine dinner or to drop in and have the best Black Beans in Houston while sipping a margarita at the bar (Marcelo knows how to make them right, just ask!)."
    Dined on 1/5/2014
  • "interesting, excellent food - we liked the variety. I have a special needs adult child who fit in well with the other early evening (6PM Saturday) diners. There were many families dining at that time, which we liked. My out of town guest is still exclaiming over the tapas. We had reservations, which I suspect we needed because the restaurant filled up rapidly."
    Dined on 1/4/2014