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Visiting Dallas From NYC For 3 Days - What should I not miss?

I'm visiting from NYC so am less inclined to explore the fine dining scene, but rather some of the more neighborhood / cutting-edge DFW restaurants. That said, I'm booked at Fearing's but don't plan to do any more fine dining / corporate / hotel type places. I've read that York Street, Stephan Pyles and Lonesome Dove are worth a try. I'd also like to include some of the places that local DFW residents frequent. Specifically, Mexican, Tex-Mex, BBQ and any other ethnic foods that are well-represented in the area. If there's a standout steakhouse I'd be open to that as well.

As an aside, I'm staying at the Gaylord Hotel but will have a car and would prefer to venture outside of the grounds for dining. Thanks very much in advance for your suggestions.

- chewbie

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Stephan Pyles
1807 Ross Suite 200, Dallas, TX 75201

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  1. Obviously a few searches for the cuisines you listed will get you the best results but here are my suggestions based on the time I lived in NY and what, from my experience, is significantly better down here.

    Mexican not tacos: Cuquitas, Taqueria Pedrito

    Tacos: search the boards, too many to recommend

    Tex-Mex: Gonzalez's, Pappasitos, Mia's

    Cajun: Big Easy

    Vietnamese: Pho Pasteur, La Me, Bistro B

    Southern food: Hatties, Babe's

    BBQ: Meshacks

    Ethiopian: Lalibela

    Taiwanese: Umeko, May's Ice Cream, Kings Noodle

    All of the above suggestions are, in my opinion, better than their counterpart in NYC.

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    May's Ice Cream
    400 N Greenville Ave Ste 15, Richardson, TX 75081

    Pho Pasteur
    8251 N Belt Line Rd, Irving, TX 75063

    Bistro B
    9780 Walnut St, Dallas, TX 75243

    Big Easy
    1915 N Central Expy, Plano, TX 75075

    Taqueria Pedritos
    321 E Jefferson Blvd, Dallas, TX 75203

    1. Fearing's is a good place to start.
      Then, try some of our true Mexican taco joints. Some of my personal (non-gringo) favorites: (you won't get this in NYC)
      El Tizoncito in Oak Cliff. Clean and bright. Incredible tacos al pastor carved from the roasting tower of pork. Check their website for details.
      Restaurant Gonzalez in Oak Cliff. Family oriented. Incredible pork stew and fresh handmade flour tortillas like mama (only wished she) made. Important: Be sure to ask for the SALSA FRESCA with your chips. They won't bring it unless you ask for it. otherwise, you get gringo salsa. Check their website.
      And also, El Si Hay in Oak Cliff. Free standing walk up true Mexican street tacos.
      As a matter of fact, just stay in Oak Cliff and visit Hattie's in Bishop's Arts for true (low country) Southern food. The shrimp 'n grits are a must!!! Check their website.
      Also: Smoke. Also in Oak Cliff at the Belmont hotel.
      Bolsa. Same owners as Smoke.
      Arguably, the very best Tex-Mex in Dallas: Casa Milagro on Campbell at Plano Road in Richardson. Clean, comfortable, great food and service. Fabulous Margaritas. Check their website.
      Another great taqueria around the corner from Casa Milagro is Taqueria El Fuego. Lunch only. Hand made corn tortillas made while you watch. Check their website.
      Very hot now: Neighborhood Services. Two locations. One on W. Lovers Lane and the newest one on Henderson Avenue.
      Again, check the websites.
      Eat, drink and have a great time!

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      Neighborhood Services
      5027 W Lovers Ln, Dallas, TX

      Bolsa
      614 W Davis St, Dallas, TX

      El Fuego
      1891 N Plano Rd, Richardson, TX 75081

      Casa Milagro
      1403 E Campbell Rd Ste 110, Richardson, TX 75081

      6 Replies
      1. re: twinwillow

        And one more thing. Do not eat BBQ in Dallas! Except at, Smoke. Despite what others recommend.
        However, although I've never been to Meshacks, a lot of people here say very good things about it. However, I believe it's take out only.
        If you MUST have BBQ, go to Baker's Ribs (Greenville Ave. location only!) Their pork ribs are terrific. If you want brisket, ask them to cut from the fatty end, only! You won't regret it. Blah, sides.
        Their pulled pork is very good, too.

        1. re: twinwillow

          This is great. Thank you very much.

          1. re: twinwillow

            You absolutely must get BBQ while you're in Dallas, assuming you don't spend much time in other good BBQ cities. While Dallas 'cue pales in comparison to the rest of Texas, it is leaps and bounds better than NY and that's true even of Dickey's (a local chain).

            1. re: demigodh

              Funny you mention Dickey's. A client that I visit in the DFW area usually has that ordered in for lunch. And yes, it is WORLDS better than any BBQ I've had in NY. Our BBQ and Mexican food are severely lacking.

          2. re: twinwillow

            Twin,

            Don't forget Neighborhood Services Bar and Grill at Preston and Royal!

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            Neighborhood Services
            5027 W Lovers Ln, Dallas, TX

            1. re: DarnellErwinFletcher

              Oh yeah, I forgot about that one. It's gotta be as good as the others.
              Thanks.

          3. I think the Vietnamese in Dallas was better than what I had in NYC. I'd pick Pho Bang, Pho Bac, or Nam Hua.

            BBQ: On a good day some places can shine but overall it's not so great in DFW (which might still be better than NYC). I'll throwout Meshack's, Big Al's, Railhead, Angelo's as places I've had good BBQ.

            For Mexican I eat at El Fuego or El Torito.

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            Pho Bang Restaurant
            3565 W Walnut St Ste A, Garland, TX 75042

            Pho Bac Restaurant
            153 N Plano Rd, Richardson, TX 75081

            El Fuego
            1891 N Plano Rd, Richardson, TX 75081

            4 Replies
            1. re: amokscience

              I'd add, Le Me and Bistro B for Vietnamese in Dallas (Garland).

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              Bistro B
              9780 Walnut St, Dallas, TX 75243

              1. re: twinwillow

                The last time I was at La Me, it was disappointing. I think they may be under new management. I prefer Zander's House, Saigon Block, and Nam Hua for Vietnamese.

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                Zander's House
                2300 N Central Expy, Plano, TX

                1. re: Dallas Alice

                  chewbie, you're definitely gonna be driving outside the Gaylord for most of what you're seeking.

                  Also... La Me did change management but that was over a year ago (for reference: http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/6162... ) and it seemed like the changes were for the better. What went wrong?

                  1. re: Dallas Alice

                    I've heard very good reports about Saigon Block. Their food is "French influenced" and, BYOB.

              2. Fearings is a great place to start! They also have a wonderful brunch.

                Gourmet Mexican food in Dallas: Javier's. The steak filled with cheese is mouth watering, I forgot what it is actually called.

                BBQ in Fort Worth: Railhead.

                My favorite steak in DFW is Del Friscos in Fort Worth. I have been to Del Friscos in NYC, Houston, Dallas and this one is by far the best. Eddie V's in Fort Worth has a comparable seak.

                Lonesome Dove is incredible. Tim Love also has a fun burger place in FW called the Love Shack.

                1 Reply
                1. re: CricketTX

                  The cheese filled steak at Javier's is the "filete Cantinflas".
                  The best dish on the menu!

                2. Thanks again everyone. I really do appreciate all of the input and will be sure to report back on what I tried. Take care.

                  3 Replies
                  1. re: chewbie

                    Before I weigh in what part of NYC are you from. If from Queens that changes some of the ethnic recommendations I might suggest but if from Manhattan I will go ahead with them.

                    1. re: LewisvilleHounder

                      Live in Brooklyn. Grew up in Queens. Work in Manhattan. Jamaican/Chinese ancestry. I'm pretty much open to all kinds of food so please feel free to offer up your recommendations.

                      1. re: chewbie

                        You could swing by the Farmer's Market and check out the Pecan Lodge or whatever that has BBQ and some other Texas-y stuff. Not sure if it's all that exciting, but if you have a lot of time then it's kind of two birds with one stone. I'd try some Mexican at either Nuevo Leon in Farmer's Branch, El Ranchito in Oak Cliff, or Cafe San Miguel on Henderson. Other people like Gonzalez, I haven't been there. demigodh's suggestions are all pretty good imo.

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                        Cafe San Miguel
                        1907 N Henderson Ave, Dallas, TX 75206

                        El Ranchito Restaurant
                        502 N Scott Ave, Keller, TX 76248