If you are a Houstonian an have ever driven down Kirby Drive at night, you would have undoubtedly seen a fancy building with a wall of lights that mostly shone in blue but sometimes in other colors as well.
“Looks like some fancy resident complex”, you throught to yourself. Wrong! You were driving past Pinstripes, one of the best bowling venues in Houston - an all inclusive venue with amazing dining and socializing options, all in a safe, social-distanced environment! I have been to this place twice now and it truly does not disappoint. Bring your family or a small circle of friends for a wonderful evening! Make a reservation online for the Bistro, Bowling, or Bocce Ball areas, or multiple!
Let’s start with the parking - you can park at the garage connected directly to Pinstripes. The options available are valet for less than $10 or self park. Pinstripes validates your parking so that you don’t have to pay a fee! From the parking garage, you can either walk to the first floor entrance or enter through the second floor outdoor patio located right about the wall of lights. Let the front desk downstairs know about your reservation and they will direct you to the right spot.
During my first time here (pre-COVID), I had a 9PM bowling reservation but my friends and I decided to arrive 2 hours early to enjoy some food and drinks. It was cold that day, but we decided to sit on the second floor patio because the patio had furnaces, a fireplace, and blankets to keep us cozy! The service was great, and the services had great recommendations on what food and drinks to order. We ordered a couple of beers and cocktails as well as some apptizers to share, such as their calamari, tomato bruschetta, and prosciutto and fig flatbread. Everything was so delicious and we had an amazing time outside!
As it got close to our reservation, we went downstairs to get our bowling shoes and the staff led us to a booth just for us. The booth had very comfortable couches with plenty of seating. I was pleasantly surprised that we could also order more food and drinks during bowling as well! The bowling alley was by far the nicest bowling venues I have been to. We played for two hours and had so much fun!! The staff was also super attentive and come by every so often to ask if we needed anything.
Fast forward a couple months, I visited Pinstripes again. Houston had opened up at limited capacity post-quarantine, and my boyfriend and I were looking for something fun to do for a Friday dinner. Pinstripes immediately came to mind! We made a reservation for their Bistro because we knew the food was going to be delicious! We self-parked in the garage and then checked in at the front. The staff led us to upstairs where we got to choose our seating among the various options. As we had already tried the patio, I wanted something different and chose to sit at a table inside near the window. I did not feel unsafe in any way because the seating options were very spaced out and the venue was not crowded. We decided to feast and order an all-out dinner.
Items we ordered:
𝙏𝙤𝙢𝙖𝙩𝙤 𝘽𝙧𝙪𝙨𝙘𝙝𝙚𝙩𝙩𝙖 - I realized I forgot how refreshing this tomatao bruschetta was! This was a great appetizer to start our feast because it was light and not heavy to eat. Generous piles of diced tomatoes were nested on slices of bread - topped with arugula, fresh mozzarella, and a drizzle of balsamic vinaigrette.
𝙁𝙚𝙩𝙩𝙪𝙘𝙘𝙞𝙣𝙞 𝘽𝙤𝙡𝙤𝙜𝙣𝙚𝙨𝙚 - My absolute favorite! I am not 100% sure about this but I think the pasta was was created in-house because the texture was AMAZING and resembled a pasta I made at home. The meat was also delicious and there were generous large chunks of ground beef. The pasta was topped with mascarpone, which melted beautifully with the pasta - I was amazed at how the creaminess of the mascarpone blended perfectly with the acidity of the bolognese sauce - perfection on a plate!!!
𝘾𝙖𝙨𝙩 𝙄𝙧𝙤𝙣 𝙍𝙞𝙗𝙚𝙮𝙚 - We inhaled this dish! I was happy to see that the ribeye came with brussel sprouts and potatoes, which were seasoned to perfection and served as the perfect sides to the ribeye. The ribeye itself was cooked at medium rare and was so tender. I could tell that the cast iron cooked the meat perfectly because the ribeye was carmelized to perfection. The ribeye was also topped with fried garlic chunks, which always goes well with steak of any sort.
𝙎𝙞𝙜𝙣𝙖𝙩𝙪𝙧𝙚 𝘾𝙝𝙤𝙥 (with added salmon) - This was another fresh dish that we ordered as a starter. The salad was very fresh and I loved the concept of adding chopped dates to the salad, which paired very well with the chunks of blue cheese. We also added grilled salmon to this dish - the savoryness of the salmon went perfectly with the sweetness of the chopped dates. I truly loved the textures and flavors of this salad!
𝙒𝙖𝙧𝙢 𝘽𝙧𝙤𝙬𝙣𝙞𝙚 & 𝙂𝙚𝙡𝙖𝙩𝙤 - Need I say more??? This was served in a cast iron pan with three generous brownie square, topped with a scoop of vanilla gelato and whipped cream, with a drizzle of chocolate syrup. We were honestly so full when we ordered this dessert, but you can always have a second stomach when it comes to dessert right? The warmth of the brownie, with the added chocolate syrup and refreshing coolness of the vanilla gelato all paired soooo well together. This was the perfect way to end the evening!
I was especially impressed by the service this time because I noticed the food was cooked downstairs, and our waiter had to climb up a set of stairs with our order. We made sure to leave him a generous tip for his attentiveness and efforts! After this delicious meal, we got our parking validated and headed home! I feel so lucky to have such an amazing venue in Houston! If you are in Houston, definitely stop by Pinstripes for a great time. Alternativesly, Pinstripes also has several locations across the US, so you definitely have several opportunities to check their venues out!