One of my followers dropped me a line on Instagram and asked me if I had a list of places that were great to eat alone. I actually did not, but my general rule is one person has the question there are likely others that do as well. Plus it seemed like a good question. So I decided to get some answers from my BGWB Instagram followers plus add a few places of my own. A few restaurants were suggested by several of my Houston followers so it seemed like a great list to share on my blog. Here are my suggestions for Dining Solo in Houston.
Quite a few people were curious about what made a good “dining alone” restaurant. Their sentiment was that one can dine anywhere alone. This is true in theory, but let’s be honest some places are more welcoming than others. When I was married in my mid-twenties it was something I didn’t think much of. But once I was single in my early thirties it was a vibe I paid more attention to. Here is a great example of the feeling. Remember that scene in the Sex in the City movie where newly single Carrie and Miranda decided to dine out for Valentine’s Day only to find the holiday was now on TEN with hearts everywhere? Yeah people dining alone may want to avoid that because it is geared towards groups or couples.
In general though I find that if you are looking for a quiet dining alone situation, a neighborhood restaurant is a good place to start. If you getting out of the house and looking for a some human interaction or perhaps to meet some people, I would recommend restaurants with large bars, friendly staff and a fun/vibrant atmosphere. Oh and look for places with a good happy hour. That always attracts tons of people including fellow solo diners.
Restaurants and Bars
With locations all over town, you are guaranteed to find a Barnaby’s in your neighborhood especially if you live in the loop. It is a great spot for a solo lunch on the weekdays especially.
Bayou and Bottle
If you don’t want to “stand out” as a solo diner, a hotel bar is always a great choice. Located in the Four Seasons, Bayou and Bottle is one of my favorite bars downtown. They have great food, a nice sized bar and large tvs to catch sporting events.
Joey is the latest Canadian invasion to the Houston dining scene and the “vibes” are excellent. I typically dine here with groups, but I can tell you each time I go I see people dining alone at their large bar. AND they all are having a great time. Go at anytime and grab a seat at the bar.
Located in the River Oaks District, Loch Bar became one of my favorite restaurant stops of 2021. The happy hour crowd was jovial and full of friendly people. The bar is not large, but it seemed to draw a good sized after work crowd. Go early and enjoy.
One of my followers swears by Liberty Kitchen, specifically their San Felipe location. According to her, the staff is friendly and the bar is is always welcoming to a solo diner.
Mo Betta Brews
For the vegans and vegetarians, the popular food truck Houston Sauce Co. also has a brick and mortar called Mo Betta Brews. Not only are they serving great dishes for different diets, but they also are a great place to visit while dining alone. They recently added dinner on Tuesdays and Wednesdays. I visited with some friends, but saw two or three solo diners enjoying the atmosphere and cuisine.
Located in EADO, Nancy’s Hustle is truly a gem. BGWB followers say stop by here and grab a seat at the bar.
Another neighborhood bar that is quiet and kind of a best kept secret. Here you can grab a spot at the bar or on the patio.
Each time I pass by North Italia it is bustling with people. Large groups, dates and families, so I would not have thought of it as a great place to dine alone, but North Italia was suggested several times by various BGWB followers. I trust them and believe you all should as well.
Another River Oaks District suggestion! Located next door to Loch Bar, it has a bigger bar and a slightly different cuisine with the Greek inspiration. I also thought it was a bit quieter than some of the other restaurants in the district, but still a great pick for dining alone.
Local fave Pappadeaux is always a great pick for dining alone. Their bar is always full and typically a fun crowd. Other great thing is you probably can find one near your home.
Postino’s is one of my favorite happy hour spots. The started with a location in the Heights, then expanded to Montrose and Town & Country. My go to location is the Montrose one. Typically easy to get in without a reservation, plus they have a cool indoor/outdoor bar. Arrive early to take advantage of their wine specials.
Rabbit’s Got the Gun
Friends have been describing this bar as a best kept secret to me for a few years. So it is no surprise that several people recommended this as a great bar to visit will rolling alone. It was the only true bar to receive more than one recommendation from my audience.
The BGWB follower who offered Ra Sushi as an option noted to sit at the bar and visit the Westheimer location in Highland Village.
Roots Wine Bar
Another one of my favorites! Roots Wine Bar is a pretty chill concept located in the EADO area. You can read my full review here. In terms of going alone, my recommendation would be an early afternoon visit before the evening crowd comes.
Steak 48 Upstairs Bar
So it looks like the River Oaks District in general may just be where you need to be! Someone else mentioned Steak 48 as a great place to dine alone, but noted specifically the upstairs bar.
State of Grace
I made a last minute decision to brunch at State of Grace last week so of course there were no reservations available. Thankfully we were able to get a seat at their bar and really enjoyed ourselves. For one, their bar stools are probably the most comfortable ever. While the restaurant was pretty full, the bar had space throughout my visit. It is a great spot for a weekend solo brunch.
In early 2020, Sixty Vines was one of the few restaurants I was willing to dine inside. It was quiet, spaced out well with good lighting and ventilation. Their space is huge with several patios plus an upstairs and downstairs. This means you can slip in easily without a reservation plus there are plenty of quiet corners to pick from on a solo dining trip. I recommend grabbing one of the two tops by the windows overlooking the Rice Village area.
Tiny’s or Tiny No. 5
I love both of these locations, but find myself at Tiny No. 5 more often. Both of them give you the “ladies who lunch” vibe which I love and the original Tiny’s is in a greenery so you can’t beat the views. It is a great quiet place to lunch alone with a book or a glass of wine.
Last, but not least, Willie G’s over in the Post Oak area. This restaurant does a great job of separating the “vibes.” To the right is the traditional dining area which is more formal and chill. On the left is the huge bar area which has been a lot of fun on each of my visits. When dining alone you can grab a seat at their bar, patio or one of the many tables. I recommend to go during happy hour and enjoy all their great bites.
I like to say that we lost a year in 2020 with being stuck in the house and working from home. As such, I am determined to make up for lost time and live life to the fullest. That means that you may have to do things alone even when it pushes you out of your comfort zone or makes you uncomfortable. Although we are apprehensive to start, you generally do not regret giving these types of experiences a try. So cheers to the new year and dining alone!