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One meal in Dallas? Must be near-ish to Love Field. . .

Help! Meeting someone I haven't seen for 35 years for dinner in Dallas and dragging along my San Diego chef husband. We need someplace easy-going, quiet enough to be heard, and a place where they won't shoo us away after an hour. Going about 5pm, Thurs. Food matters but doesn't have to be stellar. Any cuisine. Price no object. (Native Texan but no fan of Dallas. Please change my mind.)

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  1. Bijoux opens at 5:30. Go have a drink first at the Inwood Lounge which is in the Inwood Theater.

    5450 W Lovers Lane Suite 225

    This is a good place too.
    Neighborhood Services
    5027 West Lovers Lane

    1. Celebration Restaurant is about five minutes from Love Field in an old house on West Lovers Lane at Elsby Lane and one of my family's favorite places in Dallas. Fresh salads, numerous vegetables (mostly local), and rolls/muffins are served family-style in a comfortable atmosphere that is good for conversation and relaxation, while quietly accommodating people of all ages. Entrees, such as the Chicken St. Caroline (grilled or fried and topped with mild white cheese, and a tomato-onion-mushroom sauce), are stellar, reasonably priced, and may be replenished at no charge. Both patio dining and indoor dining are accommodating and casual, and reservations may be made for parties of six or more. ... Celebration is casual yet classy, and truly removed from what some may consider the negative aspects of the Dallas "restaurant scene."


      1 Reply
      1. re: pschweizer

        Fireside Pie's (Pizza), Celebration (Home-Cooking), Mia's (Mexican) or Shinsei (Sushi)are all good depending on what kind of food you want.

      2. Mia's Tex Mex on Lemmon Ave.

        7 Replies
        1. re: sl1

          Have heard that Mia's on Lemmon Avenue, the root of the Mi Cocina / M Group affiliates is good, but when we tried for an early dinner there this past Sunday, we were greeted by impossible self parking (valet only - and difficult to access at that) and thus we decided upon Celebration instead. Hope to try Mia's sometime soon (maybe for an early or late lunch), and not based on the spotty service and food quality (and high prices) that we have experienced over a number of years at Mi Cocina (usually Skillman and Walnut Hill), where we have mostly tried and re-tried out of convenience, before Mariano's opened at Skillman and Abrams. ... For the parameters set forth by pickypicky, Celebration Restaurant remains a top suggestion, especially for ease of early evening access from Love Field, conversational atmosphere, and food quality/value.

          1. re: pschweizer

            Mias has little and absolutely nothing to do with the MCrowd.

            You are thinking of Mi Concina, along with taco Diner, Mercury and Mercury Chophouse in FTW.

            Mias is a family operation, and the obsession hounds have is with the following:

            Butch’s Original Brisket Tacos 9.50
            Two tender brisket tacos filled with Monterey Jack, grilled onions and poblano peppers. Served with a delicious brisket gravy, rice and beans in your choice of flour or corn tortillas

            1. re: DallasDude

              I thought that Mia's was where Mico Rodriguez got his start - his mom's restaurant, where he worked before starting Mi Cocina, and the origin of his (paraphrased) iteration that "If Mama ain't happy, ain't nobody happy."

              1. re: pschweizer

                You are correct, his parent started Mia's. He managed it in the 80's. There is a fascinating read in "D" this month on Mico.

                I like Mia's, and their brisket tacos are very good, although I prefer Manny's Uptown for brisket tacos.

                1. re: sike101

                  I read the D Mag article earlier this week. Assuming good journalism, the story is tragic. Still hope to try Mia's at some point, as well as Manny's. Thanks for the suggestion.

              2. re: DallasDude

                Was at the Step Up Lounge last evening rather late and ran across Mia. I had seen her there a few times in the past, shes really sweet. I told her about Chow and she was really happy to hear she makes the lists, and the love of the brisket taco. Perhaps she might chime in.

              3. re: pschweizer

                I think the food at Celebration blows. It is pedestrian and worn out.

                I have lived in that nabe for 20 years and have witnessed the decline of what was once a good AYCE place.

                Celebration is pressured to keep their food at the current price point and still make a profit. Their vegetables are basic: mashed potatoes, black eyed peas, squash and broccolli/spinach. I do like their salads though, especially the dressings and croutons. Their entrees are blah.

                I've given up on the desserts. At one time, they made their own ice cream which was fantastic.

                If you like this kind of food, a much better choice is Good Eats.

                Sorry, but I cannot feature the OP taking her "San Diego chef husband" to a place like Celebration when their are much better restos to choose from.

              1. re: BluffViewChound

                Excellent rec!

                Would you go with Eden Cafe too?

                1. re: Scagnetti

                  Eden Cafe on Lovers Lane across from Celebration is a great rec as well. I'm a big fan and it certainly falls under the parameters of "easy-going, quiet enough to be heard, and a place where they won't shoo us away after an hour." With that rec, I would suggest stopping by Pogo in Inwood Village for a bottle or two of wine as it is BYOB. Someone in the group needs to try the Sage Burger.

                1. I would have to agree with the thumbs down on Celebration. It was quite the "concept" restaurant with great all you could eat, home-style food in the late 70's and early 80's. Haven't been in many years until 2 years ago, the Friday before Christmas. Lot's of office lunch-outs were going on. The place was packed. The food should have been fresh and hot, HOWEVER, the breads and muffins (which are raved about) were cold and stale. My entree (completely unmemorable) and vegetables wer flavorless and all looked like they had been sitting around for quite awhile. It still packs them in, so will likely remain a go-to place for a number of years - but not by me and I certainly wouldn't recommend it to friends or family.

                  Mia's is another place that's been around for eon's, but is not a pick of mine. That said, I've never had the brisket tacos that are their crowd appointed favorite.

                  For Tex-Mex/(some would say bastardized) Salvadorian with a bit of an upscale ambiance, I like Gloria's; however I haven't been to the Lemmon location so don't know how it is on food or quiet. At that hour and in that area, it may be brash with a happy-hour crowd. These days, they are a local chain and may not be what you would want to consider. But, then again...... https://gloriasrestaurants.com/hphour...

                  2 Replies
                  1. re: CocoaNut

                    Perhaps verging on stridency, I have never had a bad meal at Celebration over more than 25 years, since first going there in high school. The rolls, muffins, and vegetables have been particularly noteworthy. Certainly, service has been amiss on occasion, but the food has been consistently good - well, except for the salmon, which has been thin and overcooked. ... Still, it's the best bet near Love Field.

                    1. re: pschweizer

                      pschweizer yopu are a good person and appreciate your views. I will be following you along to see what else you have to say.

                  2. We can shut this baby down. I appreciate all yall's reco's-- and the great discussion. (It's good for this homesick Texan to hear a Texas accent in the comments.) The man we met took us to Gloria's. The food was terrible but the dinner was special because who I was meeting was the son of a long-dead friend. Gloria's was quiet. We had excellent service. The airco was cool. The parking was easy, and so was getting there from Love Field. We'll have to come back to Dallas for food, but for a sentimental dinner, Gloria's was just fine.

                    3 Replies
                    1. re: pickypicky

                      "The food was terrible" wow

                      I am shocked that you dropped Gloria's like that! They should be slotted near the top of Dallas tex-mexish food (it's el salvadorian). The meat there is superb and really makes the dishes (more-so than the black beans!). Margarita's are as good as you can expect without making them yourself. I've had most of their menu (and I'm picky on food) and think this place handily beats Mi Cocina, Mia's, Taco Dinner, etc. and is on par with Manuels in Austin.


                      1. re: William Rucker

                        William...I won't 100% concur with picky's summary of the meal, but I will say that my wife and i have been huge fans of Gloria's since we moved to Dallas 4 years ago. The last time we went (September?) there was just something sort of off about the whole night. It was like they had changed the recipes for everything. Now maybe this was just a bad night, but it sure seemed like something more than that (as our previous couple of trips had been kind of suspect too).

                        We tried Mario Sabino's this weekend and i have to say it reminded me of the Glroia's we fell in love with 4 years ago.

                        Just my opinion though...

                      2. re: pickypicky

                        Does Gloria's serve handmade flour or corn tortillas with the meals?

                      3. If I'd of realized you were headed to Gloria's, I would have steered you to, Mario Sabino. It's an El Salvadorian/Tex-Mex restaurant recently opened by former Gloria's employees on Lemmon Avenue just East of Inwood Road.
                        I've been there a number of times and have enjoyed the (El Salvadorian) food there.