By Amy Gross, the VineSleuth
You might not think of a Pan-Asian bistro as the place to find an outstanding wine list, but Rattan, located in the Energy Corridor in West Houston, has exactly that.
When I first visited, I was certainly expecting a delicious dinner with a few notable wines. What I got was a symphony of flavors from the food together with the wine and more choices than I really even knew what to do with! (And I’m a girl who likes choices!!)
For food, the menu offers tried and true favorites and everything you’d expect from sushi to noodle dishes to soups to seafood, meat and vegetarian dishes. But these dishes are anything but ordinary. I loved how the flavors in the food really stood out, yet still blended so beautifully together. I could tell that each ingredient was selected for a reason and not just haphazardly thrown together.
What really grabbed me, though, was the wine list. Oh, the wine list…
There were 42 wines offered by the glass–and delicious, interesting options at that! (Yes, I did say 42. You read that right.) Plus there were countless bottles available from $29 to $450, with most selections under $50.
You’ve got to love those prices because so often in restaurants you see such a massive markup, but at Rattan, the prices were definitely reasonable. When I brought the list home to show my husband, he was also blown away by the selection and price. There are so many delicious wines on there!
This is a place that takes its wines seriously, yet still encourages exploration without intimidation.
I’m often in the mood to explore, so I love that you can choose from 14 wine flights ranging from “Sushi Friendly Flight” to “The Juicy White Couture” to “Mysterious Old World Flight” to “Bang for your Buck Cab Flight.” If you want to try new flavors, this is the way to do it! Plus, if you ask your waiter or the manager, they’ll even custom design a flight for you using any of the wines offered by the glass. In addition, owner Ron Chen, who loves wine and is responsible for the restaurant’s exhaustive list, is almost always there to help you make choices you’ll enjoy.
Rattan is a great spot for lingering over a few glasses or a bottle, enjoying the wine and seeing how different wines compliment the different dishes. (I didn’t mean to gloss over the food so much—it really is excellent, but I was just so pleasantly surprised by all that wine!)
You might be concerned that with so many wines by the glass, that the glasses aren’t so fresh. Well, Rattan uses the Enomatic system which allows bottles to be opened for up to 4 weeks while still remaining fresh. Actually, Rattan was one of the first restaurants in Houston to adopt this system, which is also used at the Tasting Room and a few other places around town.
If you’re in the neighborhood, or even if you aren’t, and you want a memorable meal and fantastic wine options, make it a point to visit Rattan. You’ll thank me.
Restaurant: Rattan Bistro
Location: 1396 Eldridge Parkway, Houston, TX 77077
Web Site: www.rattanbistro.com
- Monday- Thursday: 11 am- 10 pm
- Friday: 11 am- Midnight
- Saturday Noon- Midnight
- Sunday: closed
Ambiance: Smart casual, great for date night, a business lunch or even family dining