ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel

Bistro Menil: Welcome Addition to Menil Collection in Houston

Updated on March 27, 2020
Peggy W profile image

I live in Houston, and I have worked as a nurse. My interests include art, traveling, reading, gardening, cooking, and our wonderful pets.

Exterior of Bistro Menil
Exterior of Bistro Menil | Source

Bistro Menil

The Bistro Menil is a welcome addition to the 30 acre Houston art campus. That campus includes the Menil Collection, Rothko Chapel, Byzantine Fresco Chapel, the Cy Twombly Pavilion, and the Dan Flavin Installation. The Menil Drawing Institute is the latest addition to this beautifully conceived campus. All of these buildings are open to the public, and admission is free.

This modern bistro is in a bungalow house adjacent to the Menil Collection. It is open to match the days when the museum is open to the public. From Wednesdays to Sundays, one can take advantage of lunch, afternoon tea, happy hours, and dinner. Brunch is also offered from Friday to Sunday from 10 AM to 3 PM. Check the Bistro Menil website for hours, special events, wine tastings, and the like. The address is 1513 W Alabama St., Houston, Texas 77006.

Click thumbnail to view full-size
Main dining room looking towards the entrance and bar areaBistro Menil Bar Area at Entrance
Main dining room looking towards the entrance and bar area
Main dining room looking towards the entrance and bar area | Source
Bistro Menil Bar Area at Entrance
Bistro Menil Bar Area at Entrance | Source

Interior Spaces and Decor

Large windows, along with modern lighting, make this restaurant a bright light-filled space. Fresh flowers adorn each table. The wood ceiling offsets the tabletops while the molded white chairs counterbalance the white walls.

The stark white of the walls allows three-dimensional art to pop! Some people have described this modeled art as resembling clouds. The way it emerges from the walls it reminds me more of the growth of mushrooms or even clustering of flowers. Suffice it to say; it is eye-catching!

On the left side of the entrance and bar is a smaller dining space with access to the patio area. It is quite lovely! It is also less noisy according to reports that I have read when this bistro is full of patrons.

Click thumbnail to view full-size
Main dining room with large windows to the right of the bar areaWall DecorInterior dining space with adjacent outdoor patio Another view of Bistro Menil dining space adjacent to patio Wine storage glass enclosed area
Main dining room with large windows to the right of the bar area
Main dining room with large windows to the right of the bar area | Source
Wall Decor
Wall Decor | Source
Interior dining space with adjacent outdoor patio
Interior dining space with adjacent outdoor patio | Source
Another view of Bistro Menil dining space adjacent to patio
Another view of Bistro Menil dining space adjacent to patio | Source
Wine storage glass enclosed area
Wine storage glass enclosed area | Source

Houston Restaurant Weeks

The first time my husband and I dined at Bistro Menil was during the 2017 Houston Restaurants Weeks. $3 of our $20 lunch price was donated to the Houston Food Bank. That is an excellent time to get out there and try new restaurants or even return to tried and true ones of which one is already familiar. Other ones we tried and liked this year were Lucille’s, Bistecca Italian Steakhouse, and Ciao Bello Restaurant.

The Houston Food Bank helps to feed 800,000 people according to their site and covers individuals and families living in Harris, Galveston, and Montgomery counties. Distribution is through some 600 food pantries and charities serving others. In the next years, we will certainly plan to visit more of these restaurants, of which 289 participated this year.

Crusty bread & butter accompanying a meal
Crusty bread & butter accompanying a meal | Source

Food Selections on Our First Visit

My husband chose as his entrée the 6-ounce portion of the 12-hour beef short rib with sides of Yukon mashed potatoes and house salad. He raved about the tender, delicious, and mouth-watering short rib with port wine and shallot reduction sauce.

As my entrée, I chose the 8-ounce lemon thyme chicken served with pan juices and grilled lemon. My sides were the quinoa salad and cold zucchini with Parmesan and pancetta. It was all tasty! I have a vegetable spiralizer at home and have since attempted to replicate the zucchini salad with success. Thanks for the idea Chef, Greg Martin! This talented and widely traveled chef at one time worked with Julia Child.

My husband chose the Le Brownie A La Mode, and I chose the Lemon Tart from the dessert list. Both were good. We each topped off our meal that day with a steaming cup of espresso.

Click thumbnail to view full-size
6 ounce 12-hour beef short rib8-ounce lemon thyme chicken with two side dishesLe Brownie A La ModeCutting into the Lemon TartCup of espresso
6 ounce 12-hour beef short rib
6 ounce 12-hour beef short rib | Source
8-ounce lemon thyme chicken with two side dishes
8-ounce lemon thyme chicken with two side dishes | Source
Le Brownie A La Mode
Le Brownie A La Mode | Source
Cutting into the Lemon Tart
Cutting into the Lemon Tart | Source
Cup of espresso
Cup of espresso | Source

A Birthday Meal

Recently I took a good friend to Bistro Menil to celebrate her birthday. We started off sharing a cold roasted beet salad with walnuts & chives. We also had the crumbled goat cheese added to the top. It is a delicious dish, and my friend got to take some home to enjoy another day.

The birthday girl chooses to eat that very same zucchini salad that I had earlier tasted as a side dish. It was topped off with salmon as her entrée. The dressing on the mixture is a refreshing lemon vinaigrette that paired well with the salmon.

Since it was a Friday, the lunch, as well as brunch menus, were offered. My choice came from the brunch menu that day. Oh my! It was delicious!

The house-cured salmon is mounded over a mixed green salad. Deviled eggs topped off with caviar sit atop the thin latkes. Paired with a side salad, this is a dish that I would enjoy again and again.

We both had a cup of coffee, Americana, to finish our meal. My friend was presented with a birthday cupcake topped off with a lit candle. The service there is leisurely. Since they are open from 10 AM until closing, it is the perfect place to relax and chat, mainly if one happens to go there at an off-peak hour.

Click thumbnail to view full-size
Salmon with potato & zucchini latkesCold roasted beet salad with crumbled goat cheese at Bistro MenilZucchini salad with Parmesan, pancetta, French lemon vinaigrette, and SalmonCoffee Americana
Salmon with potato & zucchini latkes
Salmon with potato & zucchini latkes | Source
Cold roasted beet salad with crumbled goat cheese at Bistro Menil
Cold roasted beet salad with crumbled goat cheese at Bistro Menil | Source
Zucchini salad with Parmesan, pancetta, French lemon vinaigrette, and Salmon
Zucchini salad with Parmesan, pancetta, French lemon vinaigrette, and Salmon | Source
Coffee Americana
Coffee Americana | Source

Montrose Neighborhood

This bistro is an excellent addition to what is in the Montrose neighborhood. Nearby is the University of Saint Thomas.

A considerable lot with free parking also makes visiting Bistro Menil pleasant. The next time we decide to visit the Menil Collection, we will also plan to drop into this modern bistro for a drink or a meal. Just look for the large toy inspired red jack sculpture in front. You will know that you have arrived at the correct place!

Bistro Menil Exterior
Bistro Menil Exterior | Source

Bistro cooking is good, traditional food, earnestly made and honestly displayed. It is earthy, provincial, or bourgeois; as befits that kind of food, it is served in ample portions.

— David Liederman

Source:

Bistro Menil

This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and is not meant to substitute for formal and individualized advice from a qualified professional.

© 2020 Peggy Woods

Comments

    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment
    • Peggy W profile imageAUTHOR

      Peggy Woods 

      3 days ago from Houston, Texas

      Hi Pamela,

      We certainly do have a wide variety of restaurants in our area. Yes, it will be nice to be able to go out again when it is safe to do so. Thanks for your comment. Wishing you safety as well.

    • Pamela99 profile image

      Pamela Oglesby 

      3 days ago from Sunny Florida

      This restaurant is beautiful and the array of unusual food is wonderful You are so fortunate to have a restaurant like this one in Houston. When you consider all the other restaurants in Houston, you really have a lovel choice of food types. Your pictures are also very good.

      I imagine you will be glad when the pandemic has ended and you cn go to all these lovely restaurants

    • Peggy W profile imageAUTHOR

      Peggy Woods 

      4 days ago from Houston, Texas

      Hi FlourishAnyway,

      It is in a residential area, but it is also right next to the Menil Collection which is a very modern art museum. The entire art campus is surrounded by older homes.

    • FlourishAnyway profile image

      FlourishAnyway 

      4 days ago from USA

      You’re lucky to have such a good variety of appealing restaurants in your area. The art in the yard looks like a big jack and makes me wonder what the neighbors think, as it seems to be in a residential type area.

    • Peggy W profile imageAUTHOR

      Peggy Woods 

      5 days ago from Houston, Texas

      Hi Liz,

      Our city and others offer those "Restaurant Weeks" each year that benefit local food banks. It is a great time to try out new places, or even return to favorite ones. It is popular and is a win-win for everyone.

    • Eurofile profile image

      Liz Westwood 

      5 days ago from UK

      I really like the donation to a food bank in the bill. That's a great idea. Your review is excellent and the photos are making me hungry.

    working

    This website uses cookies

    As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, hubpages.com uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

    For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at: https://maven.io/company/pages/privacy

    Show Details
    Necessary
    HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
    LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
    Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
    AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
    Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
    CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the googleapis.com or gstatic.com domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
    Features
    Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
    Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
    Marketing
    Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
    Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
    Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
    Statistics
    Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
    ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)
    ClickscoThis is a data management platform studying reader behavior (Privacy Policy)