Oxheart Restaurant

Molecular Gastronomy, New American, Vegetarian / Vegan
$ $ $
1302 Nance St (Richey St.)
Houston, TX 77002
(832) 830-8592
5:30pm - 10:00pm
5:30pm - 10:00pm
5:30pm - 10:00pm
5:30pm - 10:00pm
5:30pm - 10:00pm

This small, 30-seat restaurant, housed in the historic Erie City Iron Works building in Houston’s Warehouse District, is about as locally beloved a restaurant on this list as you can find. The chef, Houston native Justin Yu, staged in Europe and worked at the now closed Ubuntu in the Napa Valley before returning home to open Oxheart, where his philosophy is based on “Texas' best ingredients, cooked in a focused, creative way.” That translates to a choice of two six-course, $74 menus nightly, Thursday through Monday: a garden menu (think dried beets soaked in tangerine juice or radishes cooked different ways and served with lemon balm and dried potato skins) and a tasting menu featuring many of the same dishes but with a few meat additions, including sofrito of dried shellfish, steamed gulf crawfish, and smoked wild boar. Oxheart has been named the city’s best restaurant by the Houston Chronicle’s restaurant critic Alison Cook for two years running (she gave it four stars in 2012), and it’s one of the few and first restaurants that New York Times restaurant critic Pete Wells has visited outside of New York City for an informal review. Keep in mind that, because there’s some serious draw, reservations can be difficult to obtain; they’re taken by phone between 2:00 p.m. and 5:00 p.m. Thursday through Monday, and can only be made for the current and following month

— Arthur Bovino, 101 Best Restaurants, April 1, 2015


  • Whether one asks Alison Cook or Andrew Knowlton, Oxheart is Houston's best restaurant. [Eater 38 Member]
  • 2012 Best of Houston Winner: Best New Restaurant.Check out more Houston Press Winners here:http://www.houstonpress.com/bestof/ Or go moblie with the free Best Of app.
  • Chef Yu joined with his pastry chef wife, Karen Man, to create a restaurant that's wholly Houston except for one notable thing: The tiny Oxheart seats only 30 people, & reservations fill up fast.
  • A must do! Make reservations way in advanced! :) made me gf biscuits! Love it!!!
  • Whether you sit at the counter or at a table, your taste buds are in for a treat! Be sure to try Justin Vann's pairings--he is sure to surprise and delight. Truly a gem of a restaurant in Houston.
  • We have wonderful experience for dinner, ever week they change menu, always is a surprise
  • Some of the best vegetable-focused food in a city known for its meat. - Matt Duckor
  • Crystal dumplings
  • A taste of houston's James Beard. Plant centric. Beautiful presentation, thoughtful food. Cozy ambience, excellent service.
  • The vegetables are clearly the star here. So much so that I, a pretty heavy carnivore, regret not ordering the garden menu. I think that's really the way to go here.
  • Justin Yus tasting-menu odes to flora, with another option incorporating a bit of fauna if you so desire. The laid back space eases you into the artistry of the food.
  • A great place to experience gourmet Texas food
  • Just get whatsoever on the tasting menu and enjoy.
  • Working with local farms and purveyors, Chef Yu brings a sense of place to a city whose sense of self comes from all over the globe.
  • The menus change with the seasons, but the vegetables-only garden menu, at $49 for 4 courses, is like nothing else in Houston.
  • Inside track: Call a month in advance to reserve for this 30-seat warehouse district space.
  • Sit at the chef's counter if you can, to watch Mr. Yu and company navigate the absurdly small kitchen with balletic grace. The restaurant is tiny and popular; reservations are strongly advised.
  • Between courses, browse the shelves full of vinyl recordsyou'll find everything from the Psychedelic Furs to Gerry Mulligan.
  • Dish: slowly roasted and pickled okra, with smoked black garlic, creme fraiche, and 'african blue' basil
  • Try the sweet corn cake with candied corn.

Nearby places

1403 Nance St (btw McKee & William)