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09/20/10Provided by Citysearch
Recently, a group of us food bloggers went to a Vegas-style Chambord party. With the cupcakes and black raspberry drinks, we were all buzzing with a sugar high.
With our Chambord party bags, we all marched into Monarch. Even though it was a Monday night, there was a decent crowd. Met a social media marketer, a future reality star, and a brain surgeon.
Table service was lacking, and we had to get our own drinks at the bar.
06/06/10Provided by Citysearch
I have been here a few times for cocktails, and it can get expensive. We most recently came here for a quick brunch before church and discovered something special: Migas. They are stacked high on cripy tostadas with tons of vegetables and chorizo. I highly recommend this dish and say it is worth the trip. Don't bother ordering anything else, as I had your average American 2 egg breakfast, so shame on me, can't get too crazy with that. But nothing else really caught my eye. Service was a little slow, but very nice. Doesn't feel like you are in a hotel restaurant.
08/23/09Provided by Citysearch
I worked in the restaurant biz for over 10 years, thus it takes a lot for me to complain because I try to always be understanding. However, I went to Monarch to celebrate my birthday, and was dissappointed to say the least. The food was bland, but worst of all my party of 7 was kicked out from our table!!!!! Yes, you read that correctly. We had not even received our bill, and the table was cleared and they attempted to begin setting up for the next large party, which then in turn was rude to me as if it was my fault because they were already taken to our table. Funny thing is there were empty tables everywhere. Our server barely spoke/understood english, and the ""manager"" was highly incompetent and appeared to be in his early 20's, if that. He did take care of the entire $350 tab, however on my bday I would have rather paid for my food and have had an excellent expercience (or decent) than had to of gone through what my party did. I will not be giving Monarch a second try, that's for sure!
05/11/08Provided by Citysearch
Monarch is just a great restaurant to spend a great dinner at. The service is always spot on & the food is what high end dinning is all about. Finally Houston has a restaurant of the same caliber that you would find in New York or Chicago.
05/09/08Provided by Citysearch
My fiance and I enjoyed a fabulous evening at Monarch last night. We had reservations at 8 and were seated promptly. We had a wonderful table by the window...the decor is great and the ambiance was relaxing. the service was spot on...our server was quick and unintrusive and very helpful with menu suggestions. The quality of the food is up there with the best Houston has to offer. My fiance enjoyed the green tea soaked filet which was cooked perfectly and I had a spinach lasagne that was out of this world. The creme brulee we had for dessert was a bit watery but the rest of the meal and service made up for it. After dinner we went to the lounge for another drink and it was crowded and fun. The age range in the place was so varied...20's to 70's...all very upscale. I highly recommend a visit!!
05/01/08Provided by Citysearch
My wife & I went to Monarch with a party of six and all I have to say is WOW!!! I dine out all over the world & the food we experienced at Monarch was some of the best I have ever had. The service is very professional but not to over the top. The atmosphere is fun & very energetic. I think that Monarch stands alone in Houston when it comes to upscale dining. The Hotel Zaza is also a very swanky place too!
04/26/08Provided by Citysearch
My husband & I have been dining at Monarch now about once a month for the past 8 months & we love this place. The food is always fresh & delicious & the presentations of the plates are like no other in Houston. The service is always warm & friendly but not stuffy. On the weekends it does get loud but it can be a great place to people watch. I highly recommend that restaurant.
04/13/08Provided by Citysearch
Hostess was rude. Waiter was fine given what he had to work with. $36 for a steak is fine but not if it's no better than Outback. Salmon smelled a little too fishy. Bread's obviously not made there. Overall, compares favorably with Applebees.
03/28/08Provided by Citysearch
You know I read these other people?s reviews saying that the crowd is to young & it is too loud here but let me tell you that the service & food are the reasons why you should go to Monarch. I had Easter Brunch there & let me tell you it blew me away! It was a buffet like I have never seen & the food was so fresh & delicious. I had dinner there 2 nights later & again I was very impressed. If you are looking for some cheesy romantic spot to whisper sweet nothings into you partner?s ear then don?t go to Monarch. But if you are looking for a dinning experience like none other in Houston then Monarch is your place!
03/23/08Provided by Citysearch
I read finetaster's review below, and I might as well copy and paste as he/she took the words right out of my mind. I feel the same way, specially about the abundance of 20 something year olds, and the lameness of everything. Too much money, don't waste it there.
01/20/08Provided by Citysearch
My Wife & I had dinner there two nights in a row & it just gets better & better!! Service is great but the food is the reason to visit Monarch. Very creative yet flavorful (something a lot of Houston restaurants lack). I recomend Monarch to anybody but just make your reservation in advance because the tiny dinning room fills up quick.
01/04/08Provided by Citysearch
My husband & I dine all over the world & I will tell you that Monarch is the only restaurant in Houston that can even come close to any place in New York or LA. We spent New Years in Houston with friends & had dinner at Monarch on New Years Eve. They were running a 6 coarse tasting menu that was out of this world!!!! Kobe Beef, Smoked Foie Gras, Nantucket scallops!!! I can?t stop thinking about this restaurant!!! I will say anybody who puts a negative review about Monarch simply does not know what dinning is all about. Keep up the good work Zaza!! We will be back soon!!
12/13/07Provided by Citysearch
After having had a great breakfast meeting here with terrific food and service last month, I booked our small company holiday lunch here. We were seated in the window as per my request and that basically ended the positive experience. The service was haughty and slow and the food was bad enough to be inedible in some cases. Arugula was yellowed, parmesan non-existent and way too much balsamic vinegar on overcooked chicken and arugula dish I had. Tortilla soup was chunky tomato with sprinkling of tortilla strips. Yuck. Risotto was a tasteless mound. And the whole thing took nearly 3 hours due to glacial service. Too bad - I had such high hopes.
12/06/07Provided by Citysearch
Let's see how many times the so-called chef calls Citysearch to have all of the bad reviews removed because he knows they are true!!! Horrible food, expensive prices, and oh what a waste of time! This restaurant should be called Monarch Steakhouse, but the best review can be found by our prominent Houston food critic, Allison Cook of Houston Chronicle fame. Her words are my sentiments exactly. Oh, to have been a fly on the wall during menu-planning sessions for the Monarch restaurant.
Every time I visit the velvety, chandelier-lit fine-dining venue at the new Hotel ZaZa, I wonder what marching orders the Dallas-based owners gave chef Bradley Manchester.
""Keep it really cautious,"" I imagine them saying. ""Houstonians aren't early adopters of the newest thing the way we are here in Big D. But we hear they like beef, so make seven out of your 14 entrees beefy ? and just to be safe, why not include beef in your nightly special, too? That way you're 8 for 15. Should be a slam dunk.""
My imaginary pep talk continues: ""Forget that seasonal stuff, though. Everybody knows that in air-conditioned Texas there's only one season anyway. And make sure that none of our guests could guess what region they're in just by looking at your menu. Global hotel food, that's the ticket.""
Whether such misguided sentiments were articulated or not, that's exactly how Monarch ended up. For such a resolutely (almost painfully) attitudinal hotel, with its surrealistic lobby and over-the-top themed suites, the restaurant menus are resolutely dull and dated. Over the course of three visits, I found it difficult to summon enthusiasm when ordering
11/28/07Provided by Citysearch
After reading the great reviews I guess we stumbled upon a low point from the kitchen the night we went. We went on a Tuesday night?it was empty. Hoping for great service since we were entertaining potential new hires we wanted a dinner to impress.
There were 8 of us. Our waiter seemed caring and knowledgeable, however I think the kitchen put his service to the test. We had starters, salads entrees and dessert. For the starters, salad and entrees they all came at different times leaving many of us staring at our food waiting for the entire table to be served.
My starter was the Foie Gras, it was excellent however it was down hill from there?..My second course the warm goat cheese tart with spinach salad..it had a room temperature tart and soggy crust. Our entrees were delivered at 3 different times again this was awkward. I order the Filet it came with a lobster risotto and tempura asparagus. I had order the filet medium rare, it came well done?.and the asparagus was very tough that is was difficult to chew. Our waiter finally returned to our table with our last guest?s entree and never noticed or asked how everything was?.when he came back into the room I motioned for him and he took my steak back to try again. By the time he retuned with my now medium well steak?.not medium rare like I requested all of our guest had finished dinner.
So I decided to get dessert, I usually don?t have room however I had not eaten. I go the creme brule. OK so what is you favorite part about the creme brule? The sugar crust right? Well me town, however this was a scoop of custard?..again was a disappointment!
With so many great restaurants in Houston it is so hard to give one like this a second chance?.Sorry Monarch you missed the mark?Big time
How about a little more light in the dining room?
10/19/07Provided by Citysearch
I have been to Monarch now on 4 different occasions & it only gets better. They have fish specials that are out of this world. Service is top shelf & Zaza is just a cool place to see & be seen. If you go you have to try the deconstructed Ahi roll & the Foie Gras sliders!!
09/08/07Provided by Citysearch
We arrived a few minutes before our reservation and we're promply seated at our table, in the very front semi-private room overlooking the front enterance. Immediately we all felt pretty 'warm' because the A/C didn't seem to be pumping into that room. That was the extent of anything remotely approaching 'bad' about the experience. The waiter joined us almost immediately and walked us thru the drink menu, as we opted for Martini's over wine that night. We ordered a starter of crabcakes, which we're small portioned but HUGE on flavor and texture. MOST IMPRESSED! We all had different entree's, mine being the medallions and scallops. I STILL think about those and am going back tonight to have them once again. I ate SO SLOWLY as to enjoy and cherish every single bite. When my wife asked for a bite I reluctantly caved and traded for a portion of her Salmon, which was equally as good. Buzzed from the Martini, full from the meal, and warm from the lack of A/C I began to get lethargic, however when the dessert menu arrived I was quickly awaked to the sound of 'build your own cupcake'. Fun, fattening, and somewhat messy and time consuming, I felt like a glutton not worthy of the meal I had just experienced. Our waiter, whom I can't for the life of me remember his name, a portly fellow, kept us engaged and our drinks wet and full. He took time to answer any question we had, offere suggestions for pairings, and recommend the cupcake plate which I can't tell you how good it is, you just have to get it. I would have given Monarch 5 stars HANDS DOWN ANY DAY OF THE WEEK, except for the A/C issue. We all were kind of hot and it was uncomfortable at times. That I guess was the trade off for having the front room away from the noise and 'traffic'. We're going back tonight and hopefully many more times.
08/10/07Provided by Citysearch
There is always a new ""hot"" spot to go and be seen in Houston. There is always a much hyped menu at this place; one that has been subjected to hyperbole and hot air that it can never live up to. On a wonderful and rare occasion, the hype is well deserved. My experience at Monarch was just that occasion. Upon arrival, I was greeted by a friendly valet and shown inside Hotel ZaZa where Monarch is located. We were greeted by a very friendly team of hostesses who confirmed our reservation and showed us to their very popular bar area where my girlfriend and I had a cocktail. She had a champagne infusion type drink that she thought was wonderful and I had a martini that rivaled any in town. The bartender informed me of a special on Level Vodka that they were running that night and recommended I give it a try. I believe I am now a convert from Chopin Vodka. Our table became available early and we were seated and promptly greeted by our waiter Alan, who is in this former fine dining restaurant employee and lifelong fine dining restaurant lover, as good of a waiter I have seen. He was gracious in manner, friendly, funny, and more than well informed about the menu as well as wine selections and recommended pairings. Our appetizers came first. We had the Rock Shrimp. It comes with three different sauces (a cilantro, a soy mignonette of some sort, and sriracha) and is wonderful. Alan recommended the Keaton - Reed Pinot Noir for me and he was spot on with his description and I was more than satisfied. The wine selection there is outstanding and very well priced. For our entrees, my girlfriend had the ginger beef and absolutely loved it. I had the filet medallions and scallops and it was absolutely top notch. Some would say it is a bit salty, but that is to be expected when nicoise olives and capers are used in the sauce. The meat and scallops were perfectly prepared and fork tender. We didn't have room for desert, but will be returning soon. Cheers Monarch!
- General Info
- Situated in the heart of the vibrant Museum District, world-renowned Texas Medical Center and thriving downtown central business district, Hotel ZaZa Houston is an unexpected feast for the senses among hotels in Houston.
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- Monarch, ZaSpa Houston
- A stay at Hotel Zaza Houston Museum District places you in the heart of Houston, walking distance from Houston Museum of Fine Arts and Houston Contemporary Arts Museum. This 4-star hotel is close to Houston Zoo and Discovery Green.
- Hermann Park, South Central Houston, The Museum District
- Other Information
Wheelchair Accessible: Yes
Property Amenities: Rooftop terrace, Express check-in, Breakfast available (surcharge), Elevator/lift, Sauna, Safe-deposit box at front desk, Full-service spa, Porter/bellhop, Bar/lounge, Laundry facilities, 24-hour business center, Pool sun loungers, Offsite parking reservations required, 24-hour front desk, Restaurant, Spa services on site, ATM/banking, Wedding services, 24-hour fitness facilities, Conference space, Luggage storage, Dry cleaning/laundry service, Spa treatment room(s), Arcade/game room
Swimming Pool: Seasonal, Outdoor, Poolside Bar