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  • Reef

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Reef Details

  • Dining Style: Casual Elegant
  • Website: http://www.reefhouston.com/index.htm
  • Phone: (713) 526-8282
  • Hours of Operation: Monday - Thursday: 11:00am - 10:00pm, Friday: 11:00am - 11:00pm, Saturday: 5:00pm - 11:00pm
  • Payment Options: AMEX, MasterCard, Visa
  • Cuisine: Seafood
  • Dress Code: Business Casual
  • Accepts Walk-Ins: Yes

Getting there

  • Cross Street: McGowen Street
  • Parking: No
A word from Reef
Expertly prepared seafood with Gulf Coast, Mediterranean and Asian influences reflects culinary sophistication never-before seen among Houston’s high-profile restaurant scene. Imagine such delectable dishes as salted slow-baked salmon atop lemon risotto, crispy-skin snapper garnished by sweet and sour chard, grilled scallops aside truffle polenta and tempura batter-bronzed soft-shell crab enhanced with slightly sweet yet also sour vinaigrette. Venturing beyond traditional boundaries, less-known tilefish, triggerfish, wahoo, cobia and Rockport-caught tripletail are frequently showcased with savory brilContinued
Foodspotting photos
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Awards voted by OpenTable diners
  • Diners' Choice WinnerSeafood
  • Diners' Choice WinnerNotable Wine List
  • Diners' Choice WinnerMost Booked
Diner Reviews
  • "The food, drinks, and atmosphere was pretty good but it's hard to give the restaurant high marks overall when the temperature was so stifling. We had reservations at 7pm and witnessed a number of patrons fanning themselves throughout their visit. Although the waiter said he would look into the A/C situation, we felt like it was an empty promise. The complimentary adult milkshake sample was well received at the end of our meal."
    Dined on 7/26/2014
  • "We had a wonderful meal at Reef with our daughter & her friend, both of whom had recently moved to Houston. We had been there on a Houston visit once before. Food is great; accommodations were made for my food allergies with ease. Sal was our server...he was excellent & entertaining. A great choice for excellent fresh food, especially seafood, & great wine values!"
    Dined on 7/25/2014
  • "I do recall noise level. Noise level was LOUD. Hard to have a conversation across the table. Felt like a warehouse of people."
    Dined on 7/25/2014
  • "We had a large party. We were seated exactly on time. Great cocktails that are refreshing and unique. The food was outstanding! Freshly prepared fish and sides. We loved every minute and will definitely return. Best seafood in Houston."
    Dined on 7/24/2014
  • "Reef is great. Very good food, outstanding wine list and wine prices and service is always lovely. That said, the meal last night was good- and deserts outstanding. Our server was attentive and delightful. Reef, however, is not fine dining- and people should know that. You are going to have business folks, still dressed from the office; date night- dressed up to go out after; and others in shorts and flip flops. That is GREAT and I embrace that- and will be back over and over."
    Dined on 7/24/2014
  • "Good place for lunch - good seafood selection nicely prepared"
    Dined on 7/24/2014
  • "We had dinner here on 7/23 for first time and the food was wonderful. Our waiter was fun and great, and I thought the prices were reasonable for a fine dining restaurant. the wine list is awesome! my only complaint would be that it is noisy."
    Dined on 7/23/2014
  • "For the third year in a row, my teenage son chose Reef for a celebratory dinner. Ss always, everything was superb capped by a visit to the table by Bryan Caswell."
    Dined on 7/22/2014
  • "outstanding food and wine, great free valet parking solution, and love the Blue Bell homemade vanilla shake!"
    Dined on 7/22/2014
  • "My 4th visit. Have not been there in a year as I live in Dallas. Chef Brian is simply world class. I have eaten at some fabulous establishments in the US and PR and Reef is my favorite of them all. The flavors and details in the food set it apart from other greats."
    Dined on 7/21/2014
  • "Great fresh seafood, seasonal entrees and appetizers, and an amazing wine list!"
    Dined on 7/19/2014
  • "Awesome experience. Great food in an inviting, sleek and natural setting. I took three friends to dinner with varying levels of food sophistication and adventure level an all enjoyed the dinner, service and experience. The regional based fish was my favorite - grouper and red fish were artistically balanced in spice and preparation level without overshadowing the fish. Portion size was about right - not to large yet filling and worth the price. Service was prompt, friendly and efficient without being over attentive. Note, place was packed even at 9 pm on Saturday. Recommend reservations a few day ahead unless very early or late night dining are in your plans. One friend commented this is where she want her dates to take her!"
    Dined on 7/19/2014
  • "The food is predictably good. The noise level is a little high."
    Dined on 7/19/2014
  • "I took my girlfriend to Reef for her birthday and she loved it. Although when we got there we were sat in a single table away from the crowd of the restaurant next to the kitchen and bathrooms. We asked to be moved and they were very quick in getting another table. They apologized and we we're sat in the middle of restaurant next to the big beautiful windows. I recommend the Riesling as we liked it and had four glasses of it. I loved the redfish on the half shell and the amberjack was also good. For appetizer the soft shell crab was a culinary treat. Not too heavy on the wallet expect to spend over $100 for two. Overall it was a great experience and we will be back again."
    Dined on 7/18/2014
  • "Excellent seafood, very creative menu. Also had the usual fare if you're not adventurous, so something for everyone. Delicious!"
    Dined on 7/18/2014
  • "The majority of the existing reviews on Open Table are accurate. Our meal was very good and the wine selection is diverse and fairly priced. Our server would not allow us to order appetizers and linger over them before making our entree selections which we would have preferred. My Amberjack entree should have come off the grill 1 minute earlier so it was a slightly overcooked. As another reviewer mentioned, conversation is a challenge as it was very loud in the dining area. Overall, a very good dining experience and "Not to die for" and will go again."
    Dined on 7/18/2014
  • "Caswell has done an amazing job of providing fantastic wine at prices so reasonable that you can enhance his wonderful food with superb wines at very reasonable prices. The service was great and the server very knowledgeable and provided great direction for first timers. I would go back again and again."
    Dined on 7/16/2014
  • "Was looking for a great place to take a client for dinner, and stumbled upon this gem! Quite possibly one of my favorite top 5 restaurants of all time!"
    Dined on 7/15/2014
  • "The food here is very good and the waitstaff is excellent. The Reef is managed well and I'm sure will be around for a long time. It's one of the top restaurants in the area and can compete well will the local seafood pro's in Houston. The roasted corn ravioli, pork chop and redfish on the half shell were magnificent."
    Dined on 7/12/2014
  • "Yes, I am mad about Reef! It is simply an outstanding restaurant--one that I passionately recommend. The food is magnificent, and the service is the best that I have ever experienced. When you go--and you definitely should(!)--ask for Crystal's table. She made the entire meal twice as enjoyable with her personality, her professionalism, and her uncanny ability to anticipate your needs before you even asked! Reef is now at the top of my Houston restaurant list."
    Dined on 7/12/2014
  • "Lost it's charm and good food. Won't be back. Bland, boring and way over hyped."
    Dined on 7/11/2014
  • "We were seated promptly at our reservation time, and then overlooked by our server for about 15 minutes until we notified a busboy. Then everyone got busy. We were given complementary cocktails and shrimp shooters, I took a deep breath and relaxed, and everything turned out fine. The food was great and we enjoyed our evening. The waitstaff was attentive and apologetic."
    Dined on 7/10/2014
  • "Food inedible. Colleagues did not even eat 1/2 of their dinner. Waiter's behavior was bizarre. We struggled to get water refills. Our cocktails were nothing but ice. a miserable time"
    Dined on 7/10/2014
  • "Reef is a great fish place but surprises you with the meats they prepare. I had the Surf and Turf that consisted of a trimmed Ribeye that was cooked a perfect medium-rare and a seafood skewer with scallops, shrimp and a white fish. But really the star for me was the deep fried mac & cheese. I would go back again just to have that! The wine list is amazing and priced the best ever for a restaurant."
    Dined on 7/10/2014
  • "Had the very fresh Tempora Soft Shell Crab with a salad - another great example of the fine fresh seafood offerings at Reef!!!"
    Dined on 7/10/2014
  • "Lunched here with two business associates and were not disappointed with the food. Two of us had the grilled grouper special and it was outstanding as was the seafood gumbo. This is an outstanding chic seafood restaurant. Only negative for us was that for a business lunch the noise level was such (with no hard floors and ceiling) that it was difficult to carry on a conversation. Would definitely recommend for for other situations though."
    Dined on 7/10/2014
  • "Reef is one of our favorite restaurants in Houston. We have entertained friends and family for dinner at the Reef but this is our first visit for lunch. The food does not disappoint- the snapper carpaccio with grapefruit and red pepper was a delight. The shrimp salad and shrimp lettuce wraps were delicious but as a healthy eater I should have ordered the cream sauce on the side. The redfish salad stuffed puffed rolls was terrific. We always enjoy bread with the signature jalapeno jelly. It was fun sitting down to lunch two tables away from the chef Brian Caswell at a business get together."
    Dined on 7/7/2014
  • "It's always a big treat to go to Reef. The food is delicious and the service is great. They always have a great menu of cutting edge food as well as simple grilled items. The milkshakes no-minors are always a swell finishing touch!"
    Dined on 7/7/2014
  • "Why did I wait so long! Was an excellent meal... everything is so fresh! Prices are more than reasonable... Wine list is tough to follow but extensive and reasonably priced... Will definitely be headed back again in the near future... Our Waiter was so very knowledgeable about each item on the menu and every recommendation was on point!"
    Dined on 7/5/2014
  • "Have eaten at Reef 3 or 4 times in the past and has it has been excellent. This time none of the dishes were good, one had to be replaced as being uneatable. The replacement was not much better. The batter on the fried items was hard and over cooked. The barrel fish was very dry. Overall the visit was a great disappointment. I was entertaining an out of town visitor and had told him it was the best seafood restaurant in Houston. I was embarrassed. Will be asking my friends, who eat at your restaurant a lot, about their recent experiences. I also will ask the Chouhound group (of which I am a member). The result of their experiences will determine whether I return or not. Hope it was a one time thing and not a trend."
    Dined on 7/5/2014
  • "Wonderful restaurant for foodies to try new and creative dishes. The menu seems to be seasonal and updated daily for the freshest ingredients to be showcased. Great wine list! Dress is casual to more upscale casual (though I saw some in semi-formal dress and some in shorts-make it your night as you choose)-relaxing environment but the real star is the food! Very fresh seafood cooked perfectly and even won over a non-seafood eater. Moderately priced, you could spend well over $100 for two as we did on a splurge to celebrate our anniversary, or you could go for just the food and reign in the price a little but having wine and dessert with the meal was a nice. For a more affordable night I would love to try the bar next time. Highly recommend."
    Dined on 7/5/2014
  • "We went here with some of our family that was in town visiting because they wanted to go to a seafood restaurant. I looked up on Open Table and found Reef - looked impressive, the restaurant was awarded the very prestigious James Beard award so I had expectations and it was awful. My cousin said the Oysters were terrible. My fish was served cold and with no taste - it was edible but that's about it and the corn puree was hard to eat because I kept having to spit out the hard part of the corn that didn't puree very well. My sister said that hers wasn't very good so it was a very expensive $450 terrible meal. We did have a great bottle of french wine that I will try and locate to buy but I won't ever be going back to Reef!"
    Dined on 7/3/2014
  • "The staff was friendly, knowledgable, and entergetic. Amazing brussle sprouts and crab cakes."
    Dined on 7/3/2014
  • "The food was great, but the service form the waiter made the experience unforgettable."
    Dined on 7/2/2014
  • "I have been to Reef a few times. Each time I've enjoyed what I've had. This past time, I was a little disappointed. While everything was good, it was just really hard to find something that wasn't heavy on the menu. They do have the simply grilled scallops that came with a salad, and that was delicious (all 3 scallops). However, the apps were all heavy, as are the sides. I'm sure I could have asked to have something "special," but I hate to be high maintenance...also, this is a seafood restaurant--it seems like that should be a given."
    Dined on 7/1/2014
  • "Loved Reef food was outstanding. I had the grilled tuna. Our server Tibeaux was also wonderful he explained the wine and menu to us and made great recommendations. Overall couldnt have been any more pleased."
    Dined on 6/30/2014
  • "This was a great choice for my great Aunt's birthday. She and I always indulge on her special day. I especially loved the location and the lighting. She also enjoyed the house white wine while I sipped on the spicy cocktail that contained vodka and jalapeno. Aunt Jo loved her crab cake and I loved my seafood cous cous. It looked just like the pictures. Service was great and so was the bread with the spicy spread. The fish with the cous cous was a bit dry; however, the cous cous was great. I also especially love the fresh salt that was readily available on the table. While I love fresh salt, I don't always like having to ask for it. I'm just a bit perplexed as to where the pepper was."
    Dined on 6/30/2014
  • "We live only a few blocks from Reef and have always wanted to try it. Overall impression is: nice set up with open concept kitchen, great minimalistic furniture with an open concept in the dining area, very knowledgable and attentive staff, but a little bit lackluster on a couple of the dishes. The crabcake appetizer was great...lots of fresh crab and crunchy exterior! The grouper w/ collard greens was very tasty. The softshell crab was a disappointment on seasoning and how it was cleaned. The salmon BLT was a bit overwhelming size-wise. The salmon was seasoned and cooked perfect! But, there was so much on the 2 pieces of thick bread that it became a mess to eat for lunch. Some greatness, but a little lackluster for the pricepoint."
    Dined on 6/30/2014
  • "I took a group of friends here to experience Reef. I have previously eaten here several times and the food a and service have always been excellent. I was disappointed in the service aspect of our experience. Things started out fine, but our waitress was assigned another larger table across the room and the service level fell. I actually had to go to the hostess stand to ask for someone to come get our credit cards so we could pay to go home. Food was excellent. Service was disappointing."
    Dined on 6/28/2014
  • "The food was superb! Service was perfect. Our severer heiped make it outstanding. He explained the selections in graphic detail."
    Dined on 6/26/2014