HOUSTON—Subtle comforts plus culinary flair; that is how the general manager of Philippe Restaurant and Lounge describes their award-winning restaurant. Those of us who love the place tend to agree, that the American cuisine (with a hint of French flair) and the New York ambiance gives us Houstonians our own little swanky home away from home.
Now, to add a decadent piece of “insult to injury” – because the food is painfully good – Philippe is allowing us to take in the views of our beloved city with the addition of the new patio to enhance our dining experience.
Just in time for the change of seasons, when the night air will be cool and crisp, special guests were invited to attend the grand opening of “THE Patio” on October 11 and treated to a menu of sinfully delicious food and signature drinks.
“THE Patio has a more casual atmosphere than the Philippe dining room. Our guest can enjoy THE Patio right from shopping, after work, or before a night on the town without feeling the need to get fancied up. The LIVE music we have planned will help to create a more festive dining experience,” said General Manager Dallas Easterly.
Easterly, who has more than 22 years of professional restaurant experience, explained why they decided it was time to change things up a bit.
“Our new menu is more accessible to everyone, foodies and non-foodies alike. We have included American and Texas favorites adding a French flair to each. Everything on the menu continues to be created in the same outstanding culinary fashion as always at Philippe. The old menu was a little challenging for some to understand. The new menu is designed to create an exciting, enjoyable and slightly familiar dining experience for everyone,” Easterly explained.
The bar menu has been expanded to offer meals that still have that certain “je ne sais quois,” but are a little more relaxed for those who want to enjoy a less-complicated meal.
“The outstanding service hasn’t changed; the beautiful dining room has been updated, our wine list was recently rated the best in Houston, and our hand crafted drink selections are top-notch. All these together create a dining experience our guests will want to experience again and again,” Easterly said. “Our lunch menu is now more towards smaller plates, lunch sizes, and we have increased the service time so our guests can get in and out during their lunch hour. We still have a beautiful leisurely gourmet lunch, our $20 Three-Course Gourmet Lunch for those who are not on a time limit. THE Patio will be open for lunch and dinner serving small plates from the Phil’s Wine Lounge menu or a guest can choose from the Philippe dining room menu.”
Executive Chef Manuel Pucha has done an amazing job in helping to select the menu; keeping the famous Philippe food we have to grown to love exactly as it is, while adding selections that are common favorites for “Texas folk.”
And what is one of the most exciting additions?
“A hamburger! And not on a Brioche bun like other places, we’re delivering it to you on a traditional homemade bun,” Easterly said.
How can anyone top that!
Thursday, Friday and Saturday nights will feature a live band on the patio, where guests can enjoy some smooth sounds while dining alfresco.
THE Patio accommodates over 50 guests at a combination of tables and lounging bench seating. It was designed to be a chic place for guests to enjoy the company of friends, live music, their favorite Philippe cuisine and handmade cocktails. THE Patio will include a jockey red awning, teak tables, wicker chairs with jockey red cushions, ceiling fans, outdoor chandeliers, lanterns and candles—all surrounded by a beautiful waist- high fence and lush planters made from Ipe wood.
Guests for the patio unveiling were treated to sample items that were on and off the menu including Parmesan and Tomato Soup shooters with basil pesto; Shrimp Cocktail, cognac mango salsa (available on menu); Burgundy Beef Cheeks Vol au Vent (Burgundy Beef Cheeks dinner portion available on Menu); Truffle Mac N Cheese Fries (available on menu); Filet Mignon Profiteroles; Asian Tuna Tartar, plantain chip, soy ginger vinaigrette (some were served on a Cucumber bite); Salmon Gravlax, pink peppercorn crust; Fennel Emulsion with Osetra Caviar, celery root and pear purée; Sweet Potato Gnocchi , walnuts (available on Menu); and Pulled Pork Biscuits.
For those with a sweet tooth (or who found out they had one that night) enjoyed Mini Black Forest White and Dark Chocolate Mousse; Key Lime White Chocolate Truffle (limited availability on the Sweet Bite Tray); Macaroon Mix (limited availability on the Sweet Bite Tray); and Churro’s with Spicy Chocolate Sauce (available on menu).
The signature drinks “The Winston Churchill” and “Serenity Effect” were the perfect cherry on top to round off the exquisite tasting. Champagne and wine lovers were allowed to sip Brut Rose, Aligote and Syrah as glasses were served throughout the evening.
Since debuting in the spring of 2011, Philippe has received numerous accolades, including being recognized by Texas Monthly as one of Texas’ “Best New Restaurants,” Wine Enthusiast Magazine’s “Best Wine Restaurant” in America and most recently Food & Wine’s pick of the nation’s top sommelier’s, Vanessa Trevino-Boyd, according to the restaurant’s website.
The restaurant is located at 1800 Post Oak, just a stone’s throw away from the Houston Galleria. Valet parking costs only $5.
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