Walkable Houston: West Washington Avenue

Photo courtesy of Concrete Cowboy

While Houstonians definitely love their cars, there are nooks and crannies of the city that are best explored by foot. In our Walkable Houston series, we traverse those districts to find the prettiest parks, hottest restaurants and bars, coolest local art and shops, and most visit-worthy hidden gems.

Washington is one long avenue, but you’ll find plenty of walkable spots to visit on the West strip between Shepherd and Detering (give or take a few blocks). The area is a well known party spot, making it the perfect place for a bar crawl, with some tasty restaurants to hit up in the mix.

Eat & Drink

Restaurants & Cafes

  • El Rey Taqueria Get Mexican and Cuban-inspired street tacos and eats at this taqueria mini-chain, from tacos al pastor and grilled fish tacos to rotisserie chicken Cuban plates with white rice, black beans, plantains, and tortillas.
  • Max’s Wine Dive Famous for offering fried chicken and Champagne, its all about comfort food at this local dive. Dig into crispy deviled eggs, sticky pork ribs, jalapeño-buttermilk fried chicken, and brunch plates like the crème brulee French toast, and pair it all with a glass or bottle from its stellar wine list.
  • Pollo Campero This Guatemalan-born chicken chain rocks citrus-grilled and breaded, fried birds alongside empanadas, yuca fries, black beans, plantains and more.
  • Les Givral’s Kahve East of Shepherd on Washington and Parker, this Vietnamese eatery offers banh mi, pho, and chargrilled vermicelli and rice bowls.
  • Kitchen 713 Comfort foods get a global spin at this popular Southern kitchen. Feast on shrimp & poblano grits, jerk ribs, and lamb neck mole, and be sure to check it out for brunch.
  • Miyako Sushi Bar Satisfy your sushi and cocktail cravings at this sushi bar, just east of Parker on Washington.
  • The Counter Customize burgers with toppings from fresh jalapeños and bacon to horseradish aioli and herbed goat cheese.
  • FM Kitchen and Bar Just north of Washington off Shepherd, FM Kitchen & Bar offers a killer patio alongside burgers, queso tots, and big plates like chicken-fried steak. Those looking for something lighter can find salads, chicken tortilla soup, and charred corn elote.
  • Velvet TacoThis Dallas-import specialize in tacos without borders, from spicy chicken tikka and Ahi tuna tacos to fried falafel in a lettuce wrap.
  • W Grill Get margaritas, burgers, hot dogs and wraps, at this to-go and walk-in spot.
  • Soma Sushi Stop by this Japanese spot for happy hour, lunch and dinner, with favorites from sushi and sashimi to udon and ramen.
  • Tasty Arepa You’ll find this food truck on the corner of Washington and Roy, offering Colombian and Venezuelan eats empanadas, patacones, burgers, and hot dogs.
  • Pink’s Pizza Grab a build-your-own slice or specialty pie at this local mini-chain.

Bars & Nightlife

  • Aura Hidden away off Nett north of Washington, you’ll find this beat-pumping nightclub.
  • Fox Hollow This trendy dance club and lounge also sits on Nett.
  • Little Woodrow’s Shepherd South of Washington on Shepherd, this beer-fueled sports bar is a local favorite, offering a full bar and pub grub as well.
  • Fuego’s SaloonHit the patio at this popular saloon, which boasts 26 beers on tap, 22 flatscreens, and daily specials.
  • Daisy Duke’s Get your country music fix at this hoppin’ country bar and party spot, open Thursday through Sunday.
  • Candy Shack Daiquiris The daiquiris are bright and Instagrammable at Candy Shack, with 13 flavors ranging from Texas Tea to Piña Colada.
  • Lincoln Bar Head to this contemporary Washington sports bar for good drinks and good times, and look out for a lineup of fun happenings.
  • HandleBar Houston Just down the block, this good-looking bar rocks everything from classic cocktails and tiki drinks to craft beer and wine.
  • Standard Bar & Grill Live music, craft cocktails and beer, and good vibes are on the menu at this neighborhood watering hole.
  • Concrete Cowboy Open Thursday through Sunday nights, head to this adult playground for a start or close the weekend out in style.
  • Kung Fu Saloon Featuring vintage arcade games, karaoke rooms, happy hour, and plenty of cheap eats and drinks, Kung Fu Saloon always brings the party.
  • Clutch Bar On the west end of the strip, this indoor-outdoor bar boasts plenty of flatscreens and eats and drinks, from beers, wings, flatbreads, and burgers to chicken & biscuits, breakfast tacos, and mimosa carafes at brunch.

Shop & Support Local

  • Bedrock City Comic Shop for comic books, gaming, graphic novels, apparel, toys and more at this comic book outpost on Washington.
  • Three Brothers Bakery Head to this longtime bakery to pick up fantastic cakes, cookies, pastries, pies, bagels and bread and more. The local favorite has been around since 1949, with its original location on Braeswood.
  • Urban Bicycle Gallery On the east side of Durham just one block north of Washington, this bike shop offers bikes and gear for everyone.
  • Houston Map Company Get custom maps, vintage key maps and atlas guides, wall maps, books, globes and more at this old school map shop on Durham.
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Brooke Viggiano is a food and lifestyle writer residing in Houston. When she's not contributing to publications like 365 Things to Do in Houston, Thrillist Houston and the Houston Press, she's on the hunt for the coolest happenings in the city. You can follow her musings on Twitter @BrookeViggiano .