Solo diner, late dinner near Galleria
I will be staying at the Westin Galleria for one night in a couple of weeks. Coming from Canada, I plan to hit the mall after work until closing time (even with the same stores, US has better sales, and exchange rate very favourable). Besides the restaurants within the mall, are there good suggestions close by?
My criteria would be:
- can be bar or table dining
- can take a cab if need be, say a 5 minute ride?
- entree around $20 - $25
- no ethnic restaurants as I get that in Toronto, Tex Mex would be one exception (if that actually counts as ethnic)
If I were to eat within the mall, which one should pick? I did a search with "Galleria" as the search phrase and the results are pretty old.
Oceanaire (in the Westin) is usually pretty terrific (decor, service, food) but may be a bit higher than your range. There's also the Second Floor Bistro but I haven't been.
If you cab it then Addison is a mile or two away and has a plethora of restaurants of all sorts and price ranges.
When I was there about one year ago, the Oceanaire had a special menu available just for the bar. You could pick from a wide range of fresh oysters priced per piece; the same for shrimp and other seafood. They served their bread and a salad was available. I don't know exactly what you're looking for, but since the Oceanaire is in the hotel, you can investigate and see if it's to your liking when you have arrived.
Maximo is pretty good Mexican and you can walk there from the Galleria, it's in the plaza at the corner of Noel & Alpha. Go Fish Ocean Club is in the same plaza although their entrees are more in the $28-35 range.
My favorite restaurant in the area is Kenny's Wood Fired Grill, about a 5 min. cab ride away in a strip mall a the SW corner of Belt Line & the Tollway.
Since I used this thread to help find restaurants in Addison during my quick trip this week, wanted to bump up this thread just a bit to agree with the Kenny's recommendation. From my hotel, the Intercontinental, it was only two blocks at most, an extremely easy walk.
First of all, $30 for dinner would only be with starters and for a big meal. The menu had plenty of entrees in the low to mid twenties, and BIG sandwiches in the teens. It's not cheap, but it's not overly expensive either, IMO. Moreover, portions are very big. (perhaps too big).
Dined with a colleague. Excellent dirty martinis. He wasn't happy that he ordered a Guinness and it came in a can, with no warning. However, the bartender was very cheerful about replacing it with something else, even though she had popped the top on the can (and he didn't even have to ask, she saw the look on his face and realized the problem).
Our table server was ernest, but a bit into oversell, particularly given how big portions were. My only mistake was listening to him when he said the french onion soup was the 'best anywhere'. It was decent, but nothing earth shattering. I regretted not listening to my inner voice that was telling me to try the wedge salad: seems like the sort of place that might do it well.
Anyway, after eating the soup, my heart sank when I saw the HUGE plate of gorgeous ribs come out, along with a generous side dish (included in the $24.95 price for the ribs). I was sorry to have wasted any calories on the soup.
I ordered the ribs with sauce on the side, and that is absolutely the way to go. They were tender, spicy, smoky, damn near perfect, and I just dipped them in a bit of the sauce...(and took over half of them home). When I was researching for this trip, I read a lot about bbq not being very good in Dallas, compared to elsewhere in Texas. Hmmmm.....that could be, but those (St Louis style) ribs were far, far better than any ribs I've had in California in the past year. The leftovers were almost as good cold out of my mini-bar fridge as an afternoon snack the next day. I was tempted by the adult mac and cheese as a side dish, but decided to be good and got the special side of the day: a plate of broccoli rabe (as a Californian, it was both slightly annoying and amusing that the server felt it necessary to explain in great detail what this was, even prefacing his remarks with the comment, 'now you may not know what rabe is...'. Regardless, it was very nice: not overcooked, and served with red pepper flakes for a bit of heat.
Colleague got the burger with bacon and egg. I had a bite and give it good marks on execution. He had the old fashioned (thin) fries on the side, which disappeared in a hurry.
Was too full for dessert. We got separate checks. My check, for the martini, a glass of Aussie Shiraz, soup, ribs, tax and 20% tip, was about $50. Definitely recommended if one is staying nearby; a great choice for meeting-goers at the Intercontinental. Try the ribs.
Oceanaire is participating is restaurant week August 16 through the 29th. They will have a special $35 menu avialable. Call and ask for the menu and to secure a reservation.
You mentioned getting out of the mall and there are others participating in the charitable prix fixe in that area including Second Floor, Del Friscos, and Chamberlian's Steak and Chop House.
The latter list is all very close to your hotel (all less than 3 km) and you may enjoy restaurant week an extended period of time -- through September 5th, but be sure to make reservations and mention restaurant week to get the special price. Your concierge will help.
You should also keep in mind, Oceanaire has 1/2 priced PEI oysters so long as you eat them at the bar.
Grand Lux is good - it's in the Galleria
BJ's Restaurant is a short cab ride to Addison - it's my favorite!
Grand Lux Cafe
13430 Dallas Pkwy, Dallas, TX 75240
We went to The 2nd Floor in the Westin last night and they are also partipating in restaurant week this week. In speaking to our waitress, who provided outstanding service, she said that typically they have a very full bar area and late evening menu. We had a nice time, but I didn't peak at their regular menu so I can't advise on pricing vs Oceanaire or Kenny's. I have never been disappointed by Kenny's in the 20+ times I have been there. In the 20+ times at Oceanaire, I have been disappointed several times and have chosen not to return there. Their food has always been good - - but the service is something different - especially at the bar.
The 2nd Floor
13340 Dallas Parkway, Dallas, TX 75240
I have eaten 10+ times at the bar at Oceanaire and always had great service. As for the original post, I would recommend the short cab ride to Chamberlain's Fish Market Grill. Very good and an excellent place to eat in or at the bar.
Chamberlain's Fish Market Grill
4525 Belt Line Road, Addison, TX 75001
Cecilia - In my experience, you can't go wrong with The Second Floor Bistro in the Westin. It meets all the requirements you listed and has incredibly delicious food, a great wine list, terrific cocktails and a huge scotch selection. I've eaten both at the bar and in the restaurant and have always had a fabulous experience. The chef, Scott Gottlich, is one of Dallas' top chefs so I would definitely recommend going there while you're in town.
OK, on the advice of this thread I went to Oceanaire on Friday; drove up from Austin for the weekend. My GF and I got the Restaurant Week menu. Her salad was fine, with good blue cheese dressing and strawberries, an unexpectedly good combination. My gumbo was just OK; I never expect much from gumbo outside of Louisiana, but I keep hoping. This one had a bit of the proper dark roux flavor, but it was overwhelmed with a slightly sweet tomato taste - just not right.
My Amberjack dynamite (an amberjack filet topped with crabmeat and 'spicy butter sauce') was good; nice large, fresh piece of fish. Crabmeat topping was heavily adulterated with breadcrumbs, sauce was fine. The filet was quite thick and uneven, so that there was a portion that was basically raw in the center; I didn't mind that, but some people might. As for my GF's lemon sole... well, it was a disaster. Covered with a thick breading and just DRENCHED in butter - I mean, they must have used a half-pound of butter on this one dish, NO exaggeration. Butter was not just the dominant flavor, it was the only flavor. I've got absolutely nothing against butter, but this was just way, way too much of a good thing. My GF thought that maybe they forgot that they'd already added a ladle or whatever of butter to it, and added another one (or two).
The key lime bars (basically a key lime pie in bar form) were good. Nothing was outstanding, and the sole dish was disgusting. Wine list was fairly good but way overpriced. I wouldn't go back.