Because every Angeleno loves to eat, even if he has to valet, we bring you Table Stakes: a series that answers man’s eternally recurring question (“Uh, what’s new?”), and recurs once every lunar cycle or so. Bon appétit.
Imperial Western Beer Company / Steamliner
You’re here for: Day and perhaps evening drinking. The 213 crew (Varnish, Cana Rum Bar) masterfully renovated the dining room in Union Station. Steamliner is the hidden cocktail lounge within the space.
You’re dining on: Baby back ribs and oysters on the half shell a la the Hungry Cat Chef. This is a brewery, so there are plenty of oat sodas on offer as well as mixologized cocktail classics.
Image: Reuben Brody
You’re here for: A dinner with the family. The room is quiet enough for your parents to hear what you’re saying, yet convivial enough that you won’t be getting heavy-eyed before dessert. This is hands down the coolest neighborhood restaurant now open on the Westside, a better version of what Houston’s used to be.
You’re dining on: The rack of lamb is not to be missed. It’s only three medallions, but like all of the meats, it’s grilled over almond wood and seasoned with salt, pepper, oil and nothing else. Their cuts are premium, so not much more is needed. They also bake mean breads and pizzas.
You’re here for: A romantic night out. Sosta is an intimate wine bar with low lighting and a chill vibe.
You’re dining on: Venetian tapas like spaghetti with salted anchovies and a whole branzino alongside Italian wine pairings.
Image: Sushi Note
You’re here for: Nothing crazy, just sushi, wine and some good conversation.
You’re dining on: Spicy tuna biscotti, which is like a sushi version of something Italian, with crispy rice, jalapeño, roe and sesame. The Tai Yuzu sashimi with red snapper and the gravlax-cured salmon sushi are other departures from traditional fare; however, you can venture more traditional, too. The wine is handled by the Augustine crew, so expect a list that’s fairly eclectic.
ELizabeth (2 images)
Images: Elizabeth Daniels
You’re here for: Watching a game with friends.
You’re dining on: It’s a toss-up between the classic triple decker club sandwich or the buttery chicken parm. Both will keep you wedged into your booth, eyes glued on the flat screen, with a steady supply of Moscow Mules and ales to keep you a well-lubricated spectator.
Main image: Elizabeth Daniels