Houston’s Midtown area is home to many bars and casual restaurants. There are a few stand-out restaurants for a nice dinner (Artisans and Brennan’s to name a few), but for the most part Midtown is known for its bar scene and low-key restaurants. The new developments on W. Grey are adding some variety – I have dined a few times at OPORTO Fooding House + Wine, and this place takes Midtown up a notch. There is another OPROTO location on Richmond Ave. which has some similar menu items but is not exactly the same. Parking Tip: There is valet in front (tip only).
This restaurant has the trifecta: beauty, service, food. So I had to blog about it. Because, remember I don’t blog about restaurants I would not recommend you try:
- it’s beautiful. The restaurant itself is truly lovely. I sat at the bar on one occasion, and another time on the back patio, and both times I really loved the ambiance. This would be a great date night spot.
- good service. The servers have good recommendations, one recommended an excellent cheese for a starter based on our preference for soft cheese with mild flavor. We had one hiccup in our experience, but it was handled professionally and did not ruin our evening at all. As a matter of fact, moments like this make me respect a restaurant more. The issue was the Octopus. I had actually just had some amazing Octopus in Chicago at a restaurant called MK during a business trip (I highly recommend it), so I was eager to get another taste of delicate Octopus. Unfortunately, it came out tough, and I requested that it be sent back. Octopus when even slightly overcooked changes texture. They really wanted to cook it again for us, but we did not have time to wait for another round, so they took it off our bill without question.
- the food. two words, SMALL PLATES. I love the small plates feature of OPORTO Fooding House + Wine. Small plates are great for sharing, tasting a variety of foods in one night, or having a lighter small meal. The dinner menu is mostly small plates. Aside from the photos below, I have enjoyed a number of the cheeses on the mix and match cheese board menu ($4 for 1, $7 for 2, $10 for 3, and $14 for 4), and the Curry Chicken Empanadas (also very good). Below are some highlights:
Rocket Salad ($11)
Arugula, candied walnuts, berries, goat cheese, red onion, and house smoked salmon (added for $4), what is there not to love about this salad? It is beautiful, refreshing, and healthy. I love starting my meals with a salad. It forced me to get some greens in, and I honestly really enjoy salads that are clearly chef-driven like this one. Also, salads like this give me fun ideas to try at home. I would not normally put all these ingredients together, but why not?
Crab and Avocado Crostini ($14)
Lump crab meat, avocado, and herb aioli on a crostini. This was a super simple but delicious bite. It was a great addition to our meal, and I liked squeezing the fresh lemon on top to give the crab some flavor.
Scallop Farrotto ($14)
This plate is obviously beautiful. The scallops were cooked and seasoned perfectly, over a bed of cauliflower, caraway, turmeric root, and farro with green peas. The cauliflower/farro ended up having a very Indian taste to it (probably because of the turmeric). If you like Indian spices and curry you will enjoy this, but I felt it overpowered the cauliflower (and I am Indian). I also wish the dish came with one more scallop considering the price point.
Overall, this was a lovely place to eat and I will be back! It is nice to see Midtown’s development in the recent years, including additions like this one.