Eat Your Heart Out

Where the hearth is: 10 cozy spots for winter — er, make that spring — weather

Where the hearth is: 10 cozy spots for winter — er, make that spring — weather

News_Places with fireplaces_Fireplace_Houstonian
One of the many great fireplaces at The Houstonian

Editors Note: Who would have thought that the first day of spring would send us rushing to pull sweaters and jackets out of the closet? With lows in the 30s tonight, we're republishing our list of cozy places for cold weather. Hopefully, it's the last time we'll do it this spring.

Ok, the weather outside is pretty frightful. (At least by our admittedly delicate Houston standards.) While it's tempting to cuddle up at home, it's also the perfect time of year to take advantage of the winter-friendly spaces around town. Think lots of wood, fireplaces, and food or drink that goes down just right. Save the stark minimalism and the patios for the other 10 months of the year, here are the comfiest, coziest places in town.

Agora
There's something about the second-story alcove here that reminds us of a ski lodge (we think it's all the wood). The feeling is only increased with a large, warm cup of tea.

Antica Osteria
Charming and cozy, Antica adds a bit of Tuscan flavor but still feels like a warm old house. Which, you know, it is.

Backstreet Cafe
Generally the patio here gets all the ink, but the upstairs section with its twin hearth is as lovely as winter dining gets.

The Black Labrador
Nothing says 'Come in and stay a while,' like the traditional British pub atmosphere at Black Lab.

The Houstonian
No one in town has a fireplace quite like the great one in the lobby at The Houstonian. Savor a meal at Olivette (which has its own hearth room, by the by) and camp out in front of this stunner for a complete evening.

La Griglia
The mosiac makes this fire as lovely as it is inviting, and the lively crowd and Italian favorites make this a fun spot any time of year.

Ouisie's Table
What's comfort food without an appropriately comfy atmosphere? Ouisie's has not one, but two fireplaces along with the best chicken fried steak in town.

Rainbow Lodge
Obviously, any place with 'lodge' in the name would make the list, but the refined game and rustic charm at Rainbow catapults it to the top.

Sonoma
Nab the easy chairs in front of the fireplace and wile away the evening with good wine and good company.

Waldo's
Heights-ians adore this converted bungalow-turned-coffeehouse with its eclectic furniture and its low-key, come-as-you-are vibe.