Bistro Menil

4.6
465 reviews
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$30 and under
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European
Chef Greg Martin reclaims the classic definition of a bistro by providing casual dining in his friendly, lively and wine-focused establishment. Bistro Menil offers European-inspired, American fare paired with craft beer, cask wine, and thoughtfully selected wines by the glass or bottle.

Bistro Menil offers delicious brunch, lunch, afternoon tea, happy hour and dinner selections. Weekly specials include appetizer and entree dishes along with wine tasting flights.

Chef Martin personally curates the wine menus, ensuring all wines are excellent examples of their varietals and pair beautifully with the food offerings.

Bistro Menil overlooks The Menil Collection and Menil Park and provides ample, complimentary parking.

Use of this reservation system requires that guests abide by Bistro Menil reservation policy which can be viewed at www.bistromenil.com
What 465 People Are Saying
Overall ratings and reviews
Reviews can only be made by diners who have eaten at this restaurant
4.6based on recent ratings
4.6
food
4.5
service
4.5
ambience
4.3
value
Noise · Moderate
90% of people would recommend it to a friend
5
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OT
Houston
5 reviews
Dined 19 hours ago
Overall 3food 3service 3ambience 3

Potatoes were undercooked, rest was ok. Very very loud overall. Went elsewhere for dessert.

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OT
1 review
Dined 3 days ago
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Wonderfully diverse menu. Incredibly flavorful food. Excellent service. Great atmosphere. 10/10 restaurant.

You will also likely meet the chef who is so personable it will only make you fall in love with this restaurant even more.

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CW
1 review
Dined 3 days ago
Overall 4food 5service 5ambience 4

The food was very good and the service was excellent. The tables are a bit close together, and the chairs feel sort of like cafeteria chairs. Other than that, however, dinner was very enjoyable and I would definitely return. They have a nice wine selection.

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C
1 review
Dined 3 days ago
Overall 5food 5service 4ambience 5

Delicious food, friendly but confused waiter. Brilliant use of felt art to cut sound so that you could have a real conversation. A wonderful evening for our group. I can’t speak too highly of the treatment we received.

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HB
Philadelphia
9 reviews
Dined 3 days ago
Overall 4food 5service 5ambience 4

Excellent lunch venue. Easy parking. Excellent food and service. Only draw back is that it is pricey for what you get.

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M
San Francisco
1 review
Dined 7 days ago
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

fantastic as always , service to point . Chef Martin has done n amazing job with his food and staff . I couldn't come here enough . continued success and we shall be back over and over again .

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OT
Houston
1 review
Dined on February 10, 2019
Overall 5food 4service 4ambience 4

We went for afternoon tea to celebrate a birthday, had a great experience and everyone really enjoyed it. You do get quite a bit of food for the price and the crème brûlée was outstanding

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KA
Western NC
2 reviews
Dined on February 10, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

A great atmosphere in a beautiful area of Houston. Good choices and very good food. Will definitely return.

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j
Austin
6 reviews
Dined on February 8, 2019
Overall 4food 3service 5ambience 5

We have eaten here many tomes before. The food has always been exceptionally good. but this time all three entrees were disappointing. There were very few mushrooms in the mushroom crepe, and the side veggies not as fresh as they could have been. My friend had an omelette, and we both had stomach aches just after.
The salads have always been excellent, so I guess we ordered the wrong things.
Its very noisy at lunch.

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CS
Houston
1 review
Dined on February 6, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 5ambience 4

I brought my daughter to help her celebrate her birthday.
She enjoyed everything .
Mayra our server was very professional and caring .
Thanks for defying those negative reviews.
Loved the place .

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MM
Houston
1 review
Dined on February 3, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

We will dine here several times a quarter, since it is in the neighborhood. We always introduce new friends to the restaurant for the ambiance, food & service.

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OT
Houston
2 reviews
Dined on February 2, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 5

Great view of the Menil museum, great food, and not too noisy. Ideal spot for dining with the significant other.

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L
New Orleans
9 reviews
Dined on January 24, 2019
Overall 3food 3service 4ambience 2

Food was good, not great. Restaurant needs sound abatement...conversations at the various tables became noise.

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RB
Houston
14 reviews
Dined on January 20, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Great service great hostess and great food

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OT
New York Area
1 review
Dined on January 20, 2019
Overall 3food 5service 3ambience 4

Food was great, drinks were really delish. Waitstaff practically ignored us. I would give it another chance in hopes that was a fluke.

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EM
Orlando
1 review
Dined on January 20, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

First time to try this Houston museum-district gem of a restaurant. Quaint, casual, delicious! The food was amazing. My party of three shared three different plates because we wanted to taste everything. We had a the mushroom pizza, avocado & salmon toast and kale/quinoa salad. Perfect for brunch. Would love to do dinner. Definitely a must visit spot.

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d
Houston
11 reviews
Dined on January 20, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Just very classy and wonderful

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NV
San Antonio
1 review
Dined on January 19, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

I took my daughter for her birthday. The food choices were great, the service was wonderful, and the evening was a success!

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C
Houston
1 review
Dined on January 19, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 4

My friend ordered a salad with smoked salmon and salmon caviar from the lunch menu and I ordered scrambled duck eggs with wild mushrooms, arugula and Gruyere cheese from the brunch menu. We enjoyed both dishes which were very tasty. For dessert, my friend ordered the Brownie a la mode which was very good and I ordered the dark chocolate ice cream. Unlike most ice cream sold in restaurants, Bistro Menil's is made on the premises. It was the most intensely rich chocolate ice cream I have ever eaten. It was quite amazing.

The restaurant has a light, airy atmosphere with clean lines and a view of the Menil Museum. The waitstaff was exceptional. I highly recommend Bistro Menil.

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CK
1 review
Dined on January 18, 2019
Overall 3food 3service 1ambience 3

Service at the Menil Bistro was quite slow and waiter was not very helpful. Food was ok for price, but it extraordinary.

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DS
Houston
1 review
Dined on January 17, 2019
Overall 5food 4service 5ambience 5

Great place for a special occasion and good conversation. Staff is excellent!

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BS
Miami
1 review
Dined on January 13, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 4

My favorite Sunday brunch spot, so please don't come, it's already too busy.

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CR
New York Area
12 reviews
Dined on January 13, 2019
Overall 5food 4service 5ambience 5

Eveeything was perfect, except the bread pudding which was a bit too dry.

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WG
Houston
5 reviews
Dined on January 13, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 4

Great food and very comfortable, pleasant setting. I always enjoy going to Bistro Menil.

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OT
1 review
Dined on January 13, 2019
Overall 3food 3service 3ambience 2

Dinner started off well with a delicious fondue. After that things took a downturn; they were out of the short rib and the steak ordered as a substitute was sinewy and service was very slow. We wouldn’t go back.

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OT
New York Area
50 reviews
Dined on January 13, 2019
Overall 1food 2service 1ambience 3

amazing place ruined by one rude server. got my order wrong. spilled many times. hit my mother's arm. no water for the entire duration of dinner and brought revised dishes that was a mixed hodgepodge. we left in the middle of dinner. talked to the host. emailed the owner-chef. we expected better
- revision: no response from the restaurant. so I called. Chef Greg Martin picked up (the owner). He was extremely rude, not interested in listening to any customer feedback, and arrogant. I already asked the host that evening I won't pay for the entree that server threw on the dish. The dish was nasty. I noticed my mother and I were the only Asian in the restaurant, and we got no service. No servers actually came by to fill water or ask for any other drinks. I walked to the host twice to complain. The chef did not even care to come out when I asked host I want to speak with him. Cannot believe I ended up paying. I should've had not paid. regrets... so much hate for Menil in general at this moment.
I sent private note to the chef again through OpenTable. "You do not deserve title owner-chef if you run business like that. Treat people the same way - not just white or rich. Will have to post this story on official travel blogs and advertisement. I cannot believe what happened at the restaurant and then over the phone call with Chef Greg Martin."

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L
Houston
18 reviews
Dined on January 12, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 4ambience 5

A great spot close to the Museum District. Food is creative and tasty, and there is a well-curated wine menu as well as cocktail offerings. My favorite item is the charcuterie plate- get it as an appetizer with a good wine as a prelude to your meal. I loved it that the friendly chef was bringing out entrees and chatting with the diners on my last visit.

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OT
Houston
1 review
Dined on January 11, 2019
Overall 4food 5service 5ambience 5

They lose a star for not having a full bar, just beer and wine.

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AY
Houston
1 review
Dined on January 9, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 4ambience 4

Only issue was an extremely loud sound level. Could hardly hear each other, although it was unusually crowded.

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WL
Houston
70 reviews
Dined on January 5, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Great food and excellent service!

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D
Houston
12 reviews
Dined on January 5, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 5ambience 5

Our second visit to Bistro Menil did not disappoint. We love the varied menu with plenty of choices. Service was attentive and the food delicious. My wife was in the mood for one of the pizza options and a salad. I had the short ribs. Both were perfectly prepared. We also saved room for dessert. We like the many choices. It would be nice to have more economical wine choices. Most of the glasses were $15-17.

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KS
Houston
1 review
Dined on January 5, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 4ambience 5

We love the coziness of this restaurant, it's tucked away in a little house-like structure on the grounds of the Menil (also absolutely worth checking out). The goat cheese leek fondue was absolutely amazing, and the salmon was cooked to perfection and perfectly complemented by the horseradish dill sauce. The service was friendly, the wine and beer selection is good.

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h
Houston
4 reviews
Dined on January 3, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Great service, good food, very attentive Chef, amazing!

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OT
Houston
6 reviews
Dined on January 1, 2019
Overall 5food 4service 4ambience 3

New year eve

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K
Houston
3 reviews
Dined on December 31, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 4

We’ve been going here for several years and it never fails to be an enjoyable and delicious meal for a very good price. Chef Greg is imaginative and friendly, as is the wait staff. Free parking in a great neighborhood. I have tried just about everything on the menu and it’s all terrific.

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HL
Houston
17 reviews
Dined on December 30, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

A friend and I had afternoon tea. We will definitely be back. All the food was tasty and there was plenty of it. The restaurant also had a great tea selection, something more than the everyday Earl Grey and English Breakfast, though those are available too. Is say this was the best high tea value in town. It has much pricier places beat.

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N
Houston
18 reviews
Dined on December 30, 2018
Overall 2food 3service 3ambience 3

The cassoulet is listed with venison sausage and duck confit. What is on the plate instead are small scraps of undefined stuff, and even not too many of them, with the beans and sauce.
It is not bad, but it NOT cassoulet and it is really a joke for $31.00

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MT
1 review
Dined on December 29, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Their hamburgers melt in your mouth! Excellent food, great waitstaff!

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CC
1 review
Dined on December 29, 2018
Overall 1food 2service 1ambience 4

food was wayyyy too sweet- very mediocre across the board. I thought the coffee didn't even compete with a Keurig cup and my cappuccino was 3/4 foam.

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JE
1 review
Dined on December 28, 2018
Overall 2food 2service 5ambience 5

Servers and service quite good. Food blah. Way overpriced! One individual pizza, plus three appetizers (for two people), and one bottle of very undistinguished wine, came with tip to about $150. I sampled my companion's dishes as well as my own. My goat cheese appetizer was just OK, not enough melted gruyere. The jumbo crab salad with avocado was absolutely tasteless -- no idea how that was crab! Companion had calamari which was similarly tasteless. There is no wine option (single glass less than $15, or bottle less than over $60) which is worth what they charge. Fortunately, by request for a "quiet spot" we were seated in the almost completely unoccupied north room (near the terrace), but by 7 pm the main room was loud with large parties. I'm told this place can be pleasant for lunch (if you don't mind being overcharged for unexceptional wine!), but tonight's experience, and one or two prior, have convinced me that Menil visitors are probably better served across the street in the burger joint or the Viet joint. I wouldn't mind the price if Bistro Menil offered a truly exceptional experience. Believe me, it doesn't.

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