Admittedly, dining out on Christmas is a little more difficult than on Thanksgiving. Fewer restaurants are open; after all, even cooks and servers deserve a day off with their families.
Still, a few places will be open for those who prefer not to spend their holiday sweating over pots and pans and doing dishes. Our only advice is to spread a little Christmas cheer by tipping more than usual. People whose employers ask them to give up their holidays deserve to be rewarded.
Of course, this list isn’t comprehensive. Many restaurants that serve cuisines from different parts of East Asia will be open on Christmas, particularly those that are located in Chinatown or in Asian-oriented shopping districts in other parts of greater Houston. Call in advance to confirm availability.
The newly opened luxury hotel in the Medical Center will serve a Christmas Day buffet that features herb-crusted prime rib, smoked turkey, and baked salmon along with sides such as broccoli almandine and honey-citrus glazed carrots and a full dessert bar. A children’s menu features dishes such a chicken tenders and mac and cheese. Priced at $68 for adults and $38 for children 6-12, make reservations by calling 832-699-9777 or emailing email@example.com.
The Houston institution will be open on Christmas Day from 11 am - 8 pm with all of its comfort food favorites like chicken fried steak, roast turkey, and liver and onions. Save room for the freshly-baked cakes and pies.
Davis St. at Hermann Park
UPDATE: Davis St. will not be open on Christmas.
The Israeli-influenced steakhouse will be open for dinner on Christmas Day from 2-9. Pair any of the dry-aged steaks with starters and sides such as beetroot with cheese and pistachio filling, roasted octopus with tzatziki, and Israeli salad with tahini.
Fielding’s Local Kitchen + Bar
In addition to its usual offerings of steak, pizza, and other comfort fare, this eclectic restaurant in The Woodlands will feature Christmas Day specials of beef tamales at brunch and lobster ravioli and Chateaubriand for two at dinner. The restaurant’s extensive selection of wine, beer, and cocktails means anyone can find an ideal pairing for their meals.
A meal built around chef Kaiser Lashkari’s staples like chicken hara masala, Himalaya fried chicken, and Hunter’s Beef will be way more delicious than any Christmas ham. Plus, Himalaya’s BYOB policy makes meals there even more affordable.
Kin Dee Thai Cuisine
In addition to its usual menu, this popular Thai restaurant in the Heights will feature two large format specials: Thai-style ribs and pineapple fried rice that’s served in a fresh pineapple.
Mozambik South African Kitchen
Open from 4-10 pm on Christmas Day, this restaurant in The Woodlands will supplement its usual menu with two specials: beef Wellington and coffee-crusted pork loin with a dried fruit medley. Since quantities are limited, pre-orders are recommended. For those dining at home, the restaurant is offering a to-go special of leg of lamb with roasted red potatoes and caramelized Brussels sprouts.
The Galleria’s luxurious Indian restaurant will be open from 12 pm-midnight on Christmas Day. Look for specials such as Spiced Turkey Mosaic of compressed turkey, cranberry chutney, cumin celeriac mash, gold dust blueberries, and makhni sauce and Christmas cake. Reservations are recommended.
Chef Alex Au-Yeung adds a few Chinese-American dishes to his menu for the Christmas season. Dishes include chili crab rangoon, beef and broccoli, kung pao chicken, and General Tso’s chicken. They’re available through January 2, so even people who stay home on Christmas have the opportunity to try them.
The Red Lion Pub
Head to the Anglo-Indian pub for dishes such as Shepherd’s Pie, fish and chips, and chicken tikka masala. It will be open for regular hours on Christmas Day (11 am - 1 am).
The Rustic Uptown Park
The popular bar, restaurant, and live music venue will be open on Christmas Day from 4-9 pm with homemade tamales and a special beer bottle Christmas tree.
Safina Mediterranean at the InterContinental Hotel Houston
This restaurant in the Medical Center will feature a three-course, meal with choices such as roasted cauliflower soup, filet mignon rossini, and pecan pie. For reservations, call 713-422-2779.
Toro Toro at the Four Seasons Houston
The decadent brunch buffet at this posh downtown hotel will make for a memorable Christmas feast. Served from 10 am - 3 pm, chef Rafael Villalpando’s selections include an omelet station; seafood station loaded with shellfish; a carving station with tenderloin, turkey, ham, and leg of lamb; a dessert station, and more. The meal costs $135 for adults and $65 for children 11 and under. Reservations highly recommended.