Where to eat on New Year's Eve

Where to dine and drink in Houston on New Year's Eve

Where to dine and drink in Houston on New Year's Eve

Benjy's interior bar
Ring in the New Year at Benjy's. Photo by Shannon O’Hara

The debate might rage on about whether or not a new decade begins on January 1, 2020, but one thing is not up for debate at all: all over Houston, there are parties aplenty to ring in the new year.

Backstreet Cafe
The River Oaks restaurant has a four-course dinner, plus complimentary midnight sparkling cocktail toast, as well as live music by Bob Chadwick. Guests can choose from selections such as Gulf Coast Beignets with shrimp, crab, andouille sausage, corn, and roasted red pepper remoulade; red pear salad; lobster salad; New York Strip with truffled potatoes and mushroom stew; pan-seared grouper with charred Meyer lemon and leek puree; and lemon poppy seed cake. 
Cost: $79 per person, plus tax and gratuity
Hours: 4 to 9 pm. Call 713-521-2239 to reserve a spot.

Benjy's
The Rice Village restaurant offers a social tasting menu for New Year's Eve, with five shareable plates, as well as a complimentary glass of champagne upon arrival. Selections include baked oysters with nori-chili butter, smashed cucumber salad with house pita, feta, and pecans; tuna poke with crispy shallots and coconut sauce; a crispy rice bowl with roasted vegetables and pickled mushrooms; and chess pie.
Cost: $50 per person, plus tax and gratuity
Hours: 5 to 10 pm. Reservations highly encouraged, although walk-ins are welcome

Bistro Provence
Put some French flair into New Year's Eve celebrations as the Memorial restaurant offers a four-course menu served across two hours. Selections include smoked salmon salad, lobster bisque, slow-roasted lamb shank, tournedos with potato gratin, and a chocolate and Bailey's mousse. Dessert comes with a complimentary glass of Champagne Voirin Jumel.
Cost: $85 per person, plus tax, drinks, and gratuity
Hours: 6 pm, 6:30 pm, 8 pm, and 8:30 pm. Call 713-827-8008 to reserve; a $40 deposit is required with reservation

Bosskat Kitchen and Libations
The Galleria-area bar and restaurant will serve a four-course dinner on New Year's Eve, and guests can select from appetizers, soups and salads, entrees, and desserts, along with a beverage. Options include Baja shrimp ceviche, Beyond Dirty Rice Cajun Arancini, bourbon butternut squash bisque, kale and radicchio salad, beef Wellington, blackened swordfish, and Mama Reed's Toffee Cake. Guests can select from Chardonnay, Cabernet, rosé, an Old Fashioned, a 38 Special, and Glenmorangie Original on the rocks or neat for a libation. 
Cost: $75 for seatings between 5 and 9 pm; $100 for seatings between 9 and 11 pm (the late seating includes a Champagne toast).

Broken Barrel
A three-course dinner awaits guests looking for a way to ring in the new year. Start with a glass of bubbles, and choose from selections such as red cabbage carpaccio, roasted tomato soup, salmon al pastor, braised short ribs, and molten lava cake. Two seating options are available and reservations must be secured with a credit card.
Cost: $85 per person, plus tax and gratuity
Hours: 5 to 7 pm and 9 to 11pm. Call 713-389-5628 to reserve.

C. Baldwin Hotel
Downtown's newest boutique hotel makes New Year's Eve a one-stop shop for revelry. The Holiday Getaway Package offers guests a deluxe room (a complimentary upgrade will be provided if available), a $50 dining and beverage credit, a welcome amenity, complimentary valet parking for one car, and a 2 pm check-out on New Year's Day. Those wishing a more swish experience will love the "Suite" End to 2019 option, which comes with deluxe accommodations in one of the hotel's suites, an arrival amenity with a New Year's Eve theme, dinner for two at Rosalie Italian Soul, a reserved tabled in the lobby bar for up to four guests along with a bottle of Moet to ring in 2020, turndown service, complimentary valet parking for one car, and late checkout at 2 pm on New Year's Day.
Cost:  The Holiday Getaway starts at $159 (To reserve, call 713-759-0202 and reference offer code P5)
"Suite" Ending to 2019 starts at $2,020 (NOTE: Only six are available; to reserve, call 713-351-5734)

Emmaline
Have a late dinner that include selections from a four-course prix fixe menu, a champagne toast at midnight, plus DJ, dancing, and party favors. Look for retro dishes such as Pigs in a Blanket, Waldorf Salad, chicken fried steak, and Spiced Cherries Jubilee reimagined with a modern touch. An early seating at 5:30 pm is also available for a reduced cost of $75.
Cost: $125 per person, excluding tax and gratuity
Hours: 8:30pm to midnight; to reserve call 713-523-3210

Eugene's
A three-course dinner is available, with selections such as a half dozen oysters on the half shell, a cup of gumbo, snapper meuniere, crab au gratin, pecan-crusted chicken, shrimp or chicken pasta, white chocolate bread pudding, or creme brulee. Complimentary beverages include a glass of Prosecco or Champagne, or non-alcoholic options such as iced tea, coffee, or soda. 
Cost: $79 per person
Hours: 5 to 9 pm; for reservations call 713-807-8883

Harold's Restaurant and Tap Room
Get a complimentary glass of Prosecco on arrival to kick off this four-course dinner. Select from appetizers such as Burrata and heirloom tomato salad, lobster bisque with sherry, and a butterhead lettuce salad with cream cheese dressing, and entrees like peppercorn beef tenderloin, kimchi grits and scallops, or orzo pesto with zucchini, broccoli, and red bell peppers. Maple pana cotta and chocolate mousse are among the dessert options. After dinner, head down to the tap room for a night cap and a complimentary Champagne toast at midnight.
Cost: $70 per person
Hours: Reservations available between 5pm and 9pm

Lei Low
Continuing its New Year's Eve tradition of paying homage to classic tiki bars, this year the Heights spot transforms itself into one of owner Russell Theode's favorites, Los Angeles' Tiki Ti. Look for recreations of  Tiki Ti drinks on the menu for this Nectar of the Gods celebration. Aloha wear is highly encouraged.
Cost: No cover charge, drink prices vary
Hours: 8 pm to 2 am

Loch Bar
Live music highlights the elevated tavern experience at this new River Oaks District hotspot. Seafood selections from the raw bar, along with chef and cocktail specials are available all evening long. Guests also get party favors and there's a balloon drop at midnight, and a champagne toast. Anyone wearing a tiara can drink from the legendary Loch Bar hoof.
Cost: No cover charge
Reservations can be made online or by calling 832-430-6601

Miss Carousel
DJ Izzy spins tunes so guests show off their moves on the dance floor, and there's a photo booth to capture the last moments of 2020. The EaDo favorite will air the New York City ball drop airing live, and do a balloon drop at midnight.
Cost:  $20 (For $60, guests can party admission and New Year's Day brunch at Indianola.
Hours: 8 pm to 2 am

Camerata at Paulie's 
Begin an evening of celebrating with a Champagne flight. The Montrose spot known for its dedication to wine offers guests a tasting tour of five different Champagnes, starting north in Montagne de Reims and finishing down south in the Cote des Bar. Along the way, learn about the past, present, and future of Champagne production as well as the differences between Premier Cru and Grand Cru.
Cost: $75 per person, plus tax and gratuity
Hours: 5 - 6 pm

Tony's
One of Houston's swankiest restaurants offers one of the city's swankiest New Year's Eve parties, complete with dinner and dancing to live music from Nick and the Hits. The first seating offers a four-course dinner and a Prosecco toast. The second seating comes with a four-course dinner and ringing in the new year. 
Cost: $95 per person, excluding tax and gratuity (first seating) and $195 per person, plus tax and gratuity (second seating)
Hours: 6 to 8:45 pm (first seating), 9 pm to midnight (second seating)
To reserve call 713-622-6778

UB Preserv
The theme for the restaurant's second-ever New Year's Eve party is a New Orleans Style Masquerade Ball. Dishes will be served family style and chef Nick Wong and his team offer selections such as caviar pani puri, crab egg foo yung, and wok-fried Szechuan gator. For dessert there's  a Bananas Foster Surprise. Mysterious masks are highly encouraged and the soundtrack features tunes by Big Freedia and Preservation Hall Jazz Band. A champagne toast ushers in 2020. 
Cost:  $150 per person plus gratuity and alcohol purchases
Hours: Seatings available at 6 and 9:30 pm.