New restaurant at MFAH is now Alison Cook’s favorite ‘casual museum fare’

May 29, 2021 320

BY: Alison Cook

The chink of glassware and china, the murmur of greetings and conversation sounded like an unexpected symphony in the grand, light-filled room that is Cafe Leonelli. It was the music of human pleasure and connection. I had missed it over the past year.

Above the unclad tables and sleek, sculpted chairs hung a constellation — or rather a light work called “Moon Dust (Apollo 17)” by Spencer Finch, befitting Leonelli’s location in the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston’s newly opened Kinder Building. Four hundred seventeen filament bulbs attached to 150 black metal spindles floated overhead, on their way to infinity. A sweep of floor-to-ceiling window walls caught their reflection.

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