Just thirty minutes south of Houston, Texas lies the beautiful waterfront area generalized as Clear Lake. Many small towns surround Clear Lake and each can boast of a wide variety of bars and restaurants. Although spring and summer are the seasons to see and be seen in Clear Lake, the warm / hot weather of southeast Texas can make those two seasons last all year. For your reading pleasure, I submit a few options for wining and dining in the area.
1. Lance’s Turtle Club: 2613 1/2 Nasa Parkway, Seabrook, TX 77586
The Turtle Club has been a Clear Lake institution since 1983. One the areas few floating clubs, the Turtle Club is actually a large two story boat. The atmosphere begins as you walk the plank leading up to its doors. Once inside, you can feel yourself swaying ever so slightly as you ask for your first cocktail.
Featuring live local bands, this bar is the place for dancing and romancing. The upper deck has its own bar and in addition to live bands they also have regular Karaoke nights. Most of the bartenders have been at the Turtle Club for years and are seasoned pros.
One of the unique advantages of being a boat / bar, is that many people simply drive their speedboats up and dock them right there. Taking boat rides between cocktails is a common occurrence. There is not a better place to sit and watch the sunset. If hunger strikes, they also have a full kitchen and can whip up some great, greasy pub food that will hit the spot.
One of the secrets of the Turtle Club is the phrase “Are you a turtle?” Just ask one of the bartenders and he’ll know exactly what you’re talking about.
2. T-Bone Tom’s: 707 Hwy 146, Kemah, Texas
Serving amazing food and ice cold beers since 1974, T-Bone Tom’s has been creating loyal customers left and right. Starting as a meat market in the 60’s, they are still known mainly for their food. T-Bone’s has been featured on Food Network’s Diners Drive-In’s and Dives with Guy Feiri.
For the locals, however, the food is great, but their backyard patio is where the fun is. Their large patio bar curves under the shade of bending trees. The Backyard is expansive with seating areas spread throughout. Live music is featured in Tom’s Backyard almost nightly during the warmer months.
Helpful hint: Park in the back for quick access to the Backyard without having to go through the restaurant.
3. Boondoggle’s Pub: 4106 Nasa Pkwy, El Lago, Texas 77586
Now that we have explored the great outdoors, it’s time to bring it inside for a spell. Boondoggle’s started as a brewpub in 1998 and has since expanded to an excellent restaurant that also features a variety of beers from around the globe.
The atmosphere is that of an English pub complete with dark wood, dart boards and a fireplace. They do have a patio area for when the weather is just too good to stay indoors, but you still long for a Guinness.
Occasionally, they do have a dog friendly night, so pack up the pooch and go enjoy a pint. (Check calendar for appropriate days.)
Wherever you decide to go in the lovely Clear Lake area, please remember to imbibe responsibly. Nothing ruins a good time like jail time.