Hot Spots

Celebrate Out of the Box: TGIF and Sunday Funday

Weekends are worth celebrating, whether it's dinner and a movie on Friday night or a boozy brunch on Sunday Funday.

By Megha Tejpal April 29, 2015

Photo via Flickr user Christine Tremoulet

Nothing is worth celebrating more than a weekend! They come along a lot sooner than birthdays and holidays and after a long week, they rejuvenate the mind, body and spirit like nothing else. I am the type to yell "TGIF!" from the rooftops on Friday mornings and have no problem celebrating throughout to the very end of the day on Sunday. Here are some of my current favorite hot spots for celebrating all weekend long.


Brasserie 19
1962 W. Gray St.

Weekends are great and I love to make the most of them, but sometimes Fridays can be exhausting. The stress of the entire week weighing on you, it tends to be a day to keep things and chill and let your body ease into the weekend. That being said, you don't have to make it a Netflix and noodles in a cup type of night—instead, make it a sophisticated and relaxing evening with a glass of wine, French food and a movie, and melt the worries of the week right away.

Dry-aged Prime ribeye at Brasserie 19 with bone marrow.

Image: Megha Tejpal

River Oaks is a beautiful place to celebrate just such an evening. Where Shepherd meets West Gray, you'll find one of Houston's prettiest streets, lined with palm trees, trendy restaurants, high-end shops and the historic River Oaks Theatre.

Located in the heart of it all is Brasserie 19, a hip French bistro with a chic dining room that overflows—in good weather or bad—onto the covered front patio. From the drink menu brought out to each table on an iPad to mouthwatering French brasserie dishes like beef bourguignon and escargot, Brasserie 19 promises a stellar dining experience from beginning to end.

River Oaks Theatre
2009 W. Gray St.

For a movie experience out of the box, check out the River Oaks Theatre, conveniently located right across the street from Brasserie 19. The old-school theater offers showtimes for independent and first-run films all week as well as featuring classic movies at midnight on Fridays and Saturdays. Up on the marquis this week is the popular '80s comedy The Breakfast Club starring Molly Ringwald and Emilio Estevez, while cult favorite The Rocky Horror Picture Show plays next Saturday night. Grab a drink at the bar inside—try the Cosmo and caramel popcorn pairing if you're daring—and enjoy the show.

Supporting local at The Dogwood in midtown with Deep Eddy grapefruit vodka

Image: Megha Tejpal

Sunday Funday

2616 Louisiana St., Ste. 101

A little "hair of the dog" is the best—and least painful—way to enjoy a Sunday after a very, very late Saturday night, with a couple of drinks to ease the pain of the hangover you may wake up with the next day. It is an ideology many Houstonians live by, hence the wildly popular Sunday Funday scene in Houston. Brunch combined with good weather and $1 mimosas is hard for any warm-blooded Houstonian to resist, after all.

Driving through the Midtown area, it is tempting to want to just drop in to one of the many patio bars serving brunch and cocktails on Sunday mornings. The one I tend to gravitate to the most, however, is Gloria's, with its open-air patio, spicy Latin cuisine and dangerously delicious cocktails. The menu features a mix of Tex-Mex breakfast favorites like migas and huevos rancheros alongside regular lunch fare including enchilada and burrito plates. Add a few $1 mimosas (the standard OJ-based kind) or $2 mango and peach mimosas to your meal, and your day will no doubt liven up pretty quickly.

The Dogwood
2403 Bagby St.

Brunch is until 3 p.m. on Sundays, but that's just the beginning for many Sunday Funday party-goers. Watering holes like Celtic Gardens, Woodrow's and Capitol Bar have long been associated with a hyper Sunday scene, featuring DJs, games and food trucks. One of the newer bars on the block, The Dogwood—a Houston version of the original Austin hotspot on 6th Street—is a fantastic place to continue your Sunday shenanigans after brunch. The massive, two-story, open-air space houses two bars, a dining area, countless flatscreen TVs and a DJ booth on the weekends. The spacious second floor is a favorite spot for guests, as it overlooks Midtown and offers views of downtown in the distance. The Dogwood makes a point of serving Deep Eddy vodka, manufactured in a Texan distillery in North Austin; I recommend the Deep Eddy grapefruit with soda, a sensational springtime drink.

Whether you're kicking off the weekend or partying because it's not Monday yet, there is a great energy in the air on the weekends. Why not celebrate?


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