Blue Bar at Brenner's on the Bayou
1 Birdsall St.
The Hours: Monday through Friday 5-7 p.m.
The Deals: Southern Star Bombshell and a Saint Arnold's seasonal are $3. Select cocktails, like a Japanese Twist or Pear Martini, are $5. Select wines are the same price. Blue Bar also offers "small plates" during happy hour, like calamari and sliders, for $5.
The Scene: The Blue Bar at Brenner's on the Bayou is basically the restaurant's large patio, and to get to the bar, you have to walk around Brenner's, along a concrete path, past foliage, fountains and meticulously landscaped green space that rivals most parks in Houston.
But almost immediately after walking past the sign for Blue, which has the "U" in a different shade of blue, we were greeted with the one thing that could ruin this setting: the booming beats of techno.
The closer we got to the bar, it became apparent that the Blue Bar -- should have known by the name -- was not the tranquil outdoor setting that we thought it could have been. In fact, Brenner's advertises the bar as a "luxurious high energy patio bar."
The bar itself is quite small, and it's made out of stainless steel and bright blue plastic. It'd be a better fit at a place like the H2O pool bar in Galveston. (Brenner's, like H2O, is a Landry's product.)
But the rest of the patio is great. It's big, with plenty of couches and tables and fans, and when the weather is like it is now, it could be the best "patio bar" in Houston.
The place is located along a stretch of Buffalo Bayou, nestled between condos about a block south of Memorial, and it's a good example of how the bayou could be developed, if the people in charge of stuff like that ever wanted to.
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Blue Bar was fairly crowded on Thursday evening, but it certainly didn't feel that way. And if the place ever did fill up, a short walk down wooden stairs to some tables along the bayou could provide at least a little break from the crowds and techno.
It's definitely worth a visit, and our only advice to Blue Bar is to tone it down a bit and just relax. And please, turn down the damn music.