Whether you’re an avid golfer or weekend warrior, there’s never a wrong time to hit the links. Weather in Clutch City usually allows for year-round putting, and according to Eater Houston page views, Houstonians have an interest in golfing and drinking.
Fortunately, golfing and cocktails in this city goes well beyond the traditional green. There are driving ranges, VR simulators, themed mini golf courses, and old-school putt-putt places that provide an experience for any level and every mood. And even if you’re not in it to compete or to test your skills, you can always participate for the good fun and fare.
Head to these Houston golfing-adjacent destinations for a great outing fueled by delicious cocktails and bites to boot.
East River 9
Dreading playing a full 18 holes? Divided into four zones with an 80- to 150-yard, link-style short course, this East End/Firth Ward hotspot features a driving range and a massive 12,000-square-foot social putting green, plus an area for pickleball to switch things up. The onsite Riverhouse restaurant and bar, which handles the food and drinks for the golf course, is the perfect place to fuel up, with burgers and sandwiches like the Crispy Hotbird — a spicy buttermilk-marinated chicken breast sandwich topped with heirloom tomatoes and pickles, and a Brussels sprouts and kale slaw. More chef-driven mains include the pan-seared Norwegian salmon, which is glazed with citrus and herb beurre blanc. Take a break and enjoy a drink or two on the expansive outdoor terrace, which overlooks the course and the Downtown skyline, or grab a beer bucket and keep putting along.
Even seasoned golfers won’t turn their nose at this Tiger Woods-designed putting course in Katy. Popstroke comprises two 18-hole courses that incorporate fairways, bunkers, and rough just like a traditional golf course. The fun doesn’t stop there. The facility is outfitted with a lounge bar area and beer garden with outdoor games, including cornhole, ping pong, and foosball, plus an enclosed playground for children. Guests can lounge and dine at the casual, open-air restaurant with a rooftop bar, or order through an app while on the green. Comfort food classics include street tacos, burgers, sandwiches, nachos, and wraps, but more substantial dishes like its churrasco skirt steak complete with chimichurri and sides of Cuban black beans, rice, and elote await. The rye whiskey-based Tee Off cocktail, made with fresh blackberries and lemonade, or its Irish version, made with orange slices, peach puree, and unsweetened iced tea, is a perfect way to kick off the festivities or opt for something of its wine and beer menu. Keep the kids (and kids at heart) happy at the on-site ice cream parlor, where they can choose between milkshakes and more than 24 flavors of house-made ice cream.
Spa World iGolf
This Katy spa and leisure complex’s slogan says it all: “More than you expected.” Though an unlikely place for golf, this spa doubles as a space for indoor VR golf simulators and karaoke. Snag a golf bay or private room and play an entire 18 freely at your own pace, and later book one of its private karaoke rooms to sing your heart out. When a craving strikes, choose from a variety of Korean dishes like galbi-jjim at the onsite restaurant, grab a bubble tea from the cafe, or head to the bar for a glass of wine or a mimosa. Where else can you get a facial, spend an afternoon in the sauna, then play a full 18 all while eating delicious Korean stews and banchan?
No matter if you’re a scratch golfer, or just there for the party, this national chain has made a name for itself as being the go-to interactive driving range destination. Snag a climate-controlled bay, and choose from a variety of different golf games to play and allow the interactive scoreboard system to track the chipped balls and keep score. Between shanking your shots or knocking a hole-in-one, reward yourself with prime golfing fare like its lemon pepper wings, its Meatalian flatbread that comes loaded with prosciutto, salami, pepperoni, pepperoncini, and basil, or the spicy fried chicken Heat-wich, complemented with a habanero ranch dipping sauce. Craft beer enthusiasts and cocktail aficionados alike can find something on its drink menu, but make it a memorable night with one of Topgolf’s Golfbags. Meant for parties of two or more, this boozy drink comes in a take-home mug and features flavors like cherry limeade or pineapple punch. Sweet tooth? Its injectable donut holes are a crowd favorite, filled with your choice of raspberry jelly, Bavarian cream, or chocolate sauce.
Speedy's Fast Track
Complete with an arcade, F1-inspired go-karts, laser tag, and mini-golf, this all-encompassing entertainment center has all the family-approved fun you would want under one roof. Its miniature golf course is a great value way to spend a mild Houston night outdoors with 18 holes of challenging putting priced at just under $10 a person. Assemble a crew, double up with a combo deal of golf and go-karts, and grab some elote or nachos from the snack truck to make it a festive night.
Shankz Mini Golf & VR
Escape to the Woodlands to experience this entirely black-lit and trippy miniature golf course. You may feel like you’re in a Pink Floyd music video as putt through its challenging obstacles, which are complete with neon wild animals, dinosaurs, and other characters. Besides mini-golf, the venue offers Omni VR headsets and arcade games, plus a drinks menu featuring, domestic and local beers, glasses of wine, and full bottles of easy-drinking, party-friendly sips like Prosecco.
Reserve a bay at this golf simulation hotspot, and choose from over 50 of the world’s best golf courses. Pair the experience with sharable appetizers like the Big Easy sampler, which comes with wings, queso and chips, fried shrimp, and onions, or fuel up solo with mains like the Mambo Shrimp Monica, a fusilli pasta with blackened shrimp and its signature Monica sauce. Drinks to choose from include a variety of wine, beer, and cocktails, ranging from espresso martinis to frozen margaritas to frosés.
This adults-only Houston outpost of this fast-growing national chain puts an eclectic spin on mini-golf for the 21-and-up crowd. Choose from its three themed courses decorated as a library, a plant-filled desert, or lodge, and order from its kiosk, seting the mood with cocktails like the Augusta Sunset — a refreshing vodka, Aperol, and lemon cordial spritz, or stay on theme with the cooling Tasty Green, made with cucumber, lime, and basil. Later, graze on sharable plates like pizzas, lamb sliders, sous vide pork belly, and charcuterie boards in its cute lounge and bar areas. Make it a golfing and brunch affair on weekends from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m., when highlights like its bread pudding French toast and a cajun shrimp and cheddar grits are served.
Puttshack - Houston
Located in The Highlight at Houston Center, this futuristic mini-golf course is a full sensory experience that combines lights, a tech-driven game interface with drinks, and a well-rounded food menu. Ditching the traditional paper and pencil scoring system and letting Puttshack’s virtual system keep track of your ball means you can focus more on the game — and your stomach. With tables at each hole, you can eat and drink your way through the course, with items like the chicken-and-waffle flatbread and the Texas tailpipes — a monstrous combination of a green chile pork and bacon fat tamale with a Fresno chile and chihuahua cheese spring roll, with an avocado salsa and poblano cheese sauce for dipping. A cocktail list for a Houston opening would not be complete without a special margarita — its frozen mango tamarind margarita is a tangy blend of Campo Brava Plata tequila, Smirnoff spicy tamarind vodka, mango puree, and citrus sour with a Tajin rim.
Four Seasons Hotel Houston’s Topgolf Swing Suite
Located inside the posh Four Seasons Houston, the Topgolf Swing Suites is a one-of-a-kind immersive simulation that allows groups of up to six to battle against each other on the virtual green. Perfect for small gatherings, golfers can indulge in food and drinks from the hotel’s chef-driven and whiskey-focused Bayou and Bottle restaurant.
US Golf and Games
This long-running entertainment center brings fun for the entire family with mini-golf, go-karts, vintage arcade games, pool tables, and batting cages all under one roof. Escape the Houston heat with 18 holes of putt-putt golf in its climate-controlled facility at a great value of $5 for adults and $3 for kids under 10. The facility is open until 10 p.m. Monday through Thursday and midnight on Fridays and Saturdays.
Head to this Beaumont entertainment complex for not one, but two 18-hole miniature golf courses. The course is riddled with Texas-themed obstacles like a giant oil tower and a lazy river. Perfect for kids and adults alike, dig into a pizza, burgers, or egg rolls, sip on some ice-cold fountain drinks, and try to get under par.