Walking into Etoile for the first time and observing the menu and decor, you might get the impression that the place is a little dated. But don't be fooled: Chef Philippe Verpiand's traditional French dishes are anything but boring and old-fashioned. The attention to detail and knowledge of French cuisine are evident in everything from the simple but sinful foie gras au torchon to the more elaborate coq au vin, as well as in the formal but never stuffy service. Verpiand grew up in France and worked in a number of Michelin-star restaurants before moving to the U.S. and eventually ending up in Houston, where his young Galleria-area restaurant has already made quite an impression. The traditional menu is classic in the best way, while the seasonal menu features produce and other items at their freshest. Etoile also offers diverse brunch, lunch and happy hour menus, meaning that you never have to leave the restaurant. Really, why would you want to?