Last week my sister Nayeli ( Alphienumeric on Instagram) and I, decided to do social hour at Le Colonial in River Oaks on a beautiful Thursday evening. If you know how crazy the weather has been in Houston lately, this was one of those days where the sun was actually shining. It had rained earlier in the day so there was a really nice breeze that evening. We were excited to try Le Colonial because we both love Vietnamese food, and who doesn't love a great cocktail. I actually saw pictures of the food and cocktails on HotPinkHouston's Instagram and I couldn't wait to try it. Be sure you follow her page because she is always trying out new cuisines at the coolest spots in our city.
We arrived at Le Colonial, and it is just breathtakingly beautiful. I think everyone that saw my Instagram stories that night, kept asking where I was...because it looks so different from our usual bar/lounge scene. Le Colonial describes itself as a French-Vietnamese restaurant which vividly recaptures the beauty, spirit & romance of French colonial Southeast Asia. It is a two story building in the heart of the River Oaks District. There is an upstairs terrace with lots of plants and little tables line the sidewalk downstairs, giving it a very Parisian look. As soon as you walk in, you are greeted by a beautiful hostess and everyone is wearing traditional Vietnamese wear in a beautiful dark navy blue color. It feels like you are walking into a different time era to be honest...I love places that make you feel like you aren't in Houston anymore, and this place does exactly that. We were lead upstairs to the second floor through a beautiful wooden staircase that was adorned with these marvelous black and white photographs of old Vietnam. The first floor is actually a formal dining area but as soon as you go up that last stair it turns into this super cool classy club lounge. It was so mind-blowing to view two totally different environments within one establishment.
The social lounge has a huge wooden bar and lots of tropical greenery. I love places that are filled with plants and flowers so I knew this was going to be great. There are small tables surrounded by beautiful couches that you can lounge on as you socialize with your friends or your date. The vibe is just so dreamy and romantic because the dim lighting and candles give you an ambient feel. This place is just poppin with energy and fun hip music, they play a mix of everything so we really enjoyed that. Everyone in there was having such a good time talking and laughing and enjoying their exotic cocktails without a care in the world. There is a large private room in the very back with a beautiful mural...I didn't get to capture it but you have to go for yourself and see it. It is a teal color and has green tropical plants. That is the first thing that catches your eye as you walk upstairs. I actually want my next party to be there because it is just so beautiful!
Anyway, back to the the social hour menu, it has some really amazing choices that all cost $8....I learned from Susanna the lounge manager...that the number 8 is a lucky number in the Vietnamese culture. Being that my sister and I are not picky eaters, we decided to try a variety of things. The first thing they did was bring us two glasses of Frosé for us to start our wonderful experience at Le Colonial. What a perfect summer drink to enjoy in this Houston heat. We loved the lounge but decided to go outside and enjoy the nice weather and the cool music on the terrace. I love patio's and terraces, being a Houston native has me pretty accustomed to the climate, so the heat and humidity really don't bother me. I always opt for outdoor seating when available. Le Colonial has outdoor seating with these super comfortable couches to sit back on and enjoy the view. It was truly beautiful to watch the sunset from up there.
The waitress brought out our light bites, we ordered (pictured above): Goi Ga, Goi Cuon and Cha Gio. They were delicious! Every bite was cooked to perfection with savory and exotic flavors. The presentation of the food is exquisite. I love that the dishes are like art because every tiny detail is an adornment to the entire plate. Our meal from the dining menu was the traditional Banh Uot that the waitress recommended. It was my first time having it and I loved every bite of it.
Now for the Exotic Cocktails: We had Frosé which is a twist on Rosé, and like I said, it is perfect for summertime in Houston. It is served in beautiful wine glasses that make for super cute pictures! The next drinks they brought out were the ones in Martini glasses pictured above. My sister had the Passion which had a sweet and tropical flavor. It is Belvedere Passion Mango, mixed with Passionfruit and Lime. I had the Red Buffalo, it was a spicy mix of Thai Chili, Thai Basil and Strawberries with Belvedere Vodka. My absolute favorite drink was their craft cocktail in a lavender color called La Violette. I didn't get amazing pictures of it because time wasn't on my side, but it is one of those drinks that you have to try for yourself. The color, the consistency and the taste was out of this world!
The food, the service and everyone who works there is so amazing! Shoutout to Susanna for providing us with a wealth of information on Vietnamese cusine, and for being such a wonderful host. We had such a fabulous experience. I hope you take the time to come by this summer and enjoy a few light bites, a cocktail or two and have a wonderful time in the social lounge.
Le Colonial (here is the link to their Instagram, so you can go follow them)
4444 Westheimer Road
Houston Texas 77027
*Parking is free in the garage but valet is also available.
*Social Hour is from 5-7 Monday - Saturday
*Live Music on Monday nights at 6:30pm