Named for pirates, this restaurant serves up bounty of locally sourced dishes
Crossing the threshold into Number 13 Prime Steak and Seafood’s dining room feels like you’re retreating into a cool, deep pool.
The opaque round lanterns float beneath the vaulted ceiling like air bubbles silently rising to the surface. Tables overlook the Pelican Rest Marina and the waters of Offatts Bayou just beyond. In a word, the dining room is stunning.
And while the menu certainly speaks to a refined palate with offerings that include exquisite caviars, it’s grounded by classic steakhouse dishes and seafood specialties given a twist by the talented team working under the direction of Executive Chef Chris Loftis.
Since transitioning to the position this past July, Loftis already has begun shifting the menu to emphasize local flavors by introducing new dishes such as Gulf fried oysters, shrimp and grits and golden tile fish served with smoked black-eyed peas and the now famous Number 13 Brussels sprouts.
Sourcing local ingredients has connected the restaurant to a network of small companies, growers, farmers and fishing families working along the Gulf Coast. Their produce, meats and seafood occupy a prominent spot on the plate, but also show up on the menu in less obvious ways, such as in the house-made ketchup, dressings, pickles, gelatos and sorbets as well as the house-cured bacon.
Despite the recent changes, there are some dishes Loftis just won’t touch.
“The snapper has been on the menu since day one,” he said. “It’s a beautiful plate that people really love. And we really like making food people enjoy.”
The local red snapper is served with carrot butter, sweet peas, crispy artichokes, forest mushrooms and gnocchi. It’s easy to understand why no one is arguing with him.
Number 13 continues to offer dry-aged steaks, a specialty only available at a handful of restaurants in the greater Houston area. Each cut spends at least 28 days maturing in the restaurant’s on-site dry age room before being served. Of course, wet-aged steaks also are featured, as are a number of tasty side dishes, like the standout lobster skin potatoes, to round out your meal.
Number 13 — the restaurant’s name was the collective alias of brother pirates Pierre and Jean Lafitte — will mark its one-year anniversary in December. The restaurant, and its young chef, have many reasons to celebrate. Perhaps they’ll choose to toast the occasion in Number 13’s new, private event space, a completely renovated waterfront home within walking distance of the restaurant. Or weather permitting, outside on the restaurant’s terrace overlooking Offatts Bayou.
NUMBER 13 PRIME STEAK AND SEAFOOD
7809 Broadway, Galveston