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Nov 3, 2011 06:53 PM

New and Noteworthy in D/FW

I moved out of Dallas about a year and a half ago and haven't been back. Before I left, I was enjoying great meals at Victor Tango's, Neighborhood Services Tavern, Lonesome Dove, Tillman's, Bolsa, and Lumi, among others.

Any new, notable spots in the same vein that I should check out when I return in December? Price isn't really an issue, just interested in knowing what's new and great.

Also: has anything new cropped up in the realm fine dining (e.g., the Mansion, French Room, Charlie Palmer)? We're planning one super fancy dinner, but would love to try somewhere new outside of the old guard.

Neighborhood Services
5027 W Lovers Ln, Dallas, TX

614 W Davis St, Dallas, TX

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    1. re: Jon G

      Great! Those are right up my alley. Any must-tries at Mesa?

      1. re: loratliff

        I'm a big fan of the duck mole, which is made from scratch. But it is their seafood soup/stews that I keep going back for. They are from Veracruz. My wife is a big fan of the ceviche app.

        1. re: Jon G

          That's funny! We had dinner at Mesa tonight. Fabulous food! I had the Oxtails. I usually have the incredible duck mole' but, wanted a change. The ex Mrs. Twinwillow had the Snapper Veracruz.
          Plus apps and their home made Tres Leche cake for dessert.

          1. re: Jon G

            +1 for the mole ... the only mole I've ever liked.

            1. re: foiegras

              Oh, I'll be having it again, next time!

          1. re: CocoaNut

            I ate at Grace several years ago and while it was fine, it's not really "new".

          2. Also Nona Tata (semi fancy) in FW is worthy of the drive.

            Beirut Rock if you can convince the chef to fix a special dish off menu that is on his Ramadan menu in Arlington. Lamb and orka was one of my favorites also his fresh baklava.

            Mesa is still going strong. I would say venture out and try some of their daily specials. I just went Friday night and had the best chile en nogada since I went to Oaxaca. Also get the flan de naranja (orange flan) as it is very good.

            Not sure what you had at Lumi but I went three times and never fully enjoyed any of the meals. If there was one dish I liked it was the feijoada. Everything else espeically the Veitnamese fell short

            Lucia (fancy) would be the best place in the city right now. Call now for a reservation if you plan on going.

            Il Cane Rosso is still I would say the best Neapolitan style pizzeria.

            Bambu would be my choice of something out of the ordinary. Call ahead and ask them to make a special Issan dish for you

            Royal Sichuan would be my go to for Chinese for the typical everyday Sichuan dishes. There are also a few gems on the menu. Don't forget the small plates of paper thin sliced pig ears, marinated chicken gizzards (non gamey) and chile soaked bamboo shoots.

            Little Sichuan will have more farm to table Sichuan dishes on the white board specials.

            Tei An (fancy) is something special that is rarely found outside of Dallas. That would be another go to place for me.

            Meddlesome Moth if you are into craft beers would be on my list.

            Chicken House up in Carrollton would be something definitely out of the old guard.

            Sign up for Chef Nicole Gossling or Chef David Anthony Temple if you are looking for more of the underground thing.

            If you are into the craft cocktails then Cedars Social would be a good choice as they also have some very solid food.

            Beirut Rock Cafe
            1201 S Cooper St, Arlington, TX 76010

            1930 N Coit Rd #100, Richardson, TX 75080

            4 Replies
            1. re: LewisvilleHounder

              Lewisville: what a super helpful / nice list and suggestions.

              1. re: LewisvilleHounder

                Lewisville, thanks. I've been to Tei An many times and also made it to the Meddlesome Moth before I moved.

                I'm coming from New York City, so I don't think I'll be craving Chinese in Dallas.

                Definitely adding Cedars Social and Lucia to the list.

                1. re: loratliff

                  I think you would be very impressed by the Sichuan restaurants here in Dallas. I know there are some great places out in Queens though.

                  Look up some of my past postings for specific dishes at Royal Sichuan/Little Sichuan. I even posted the menu before too for Royal Sichuan.

                  Might sound funny but there are several place up in Denton you should try also. Loco Cafe for breakfast. Ravelin Bakery for French style pastries on the NYC level. Keiichi if you want some solid sushi that rivals many in Dallas, he also has some very solid Italian too. Also can't miss Beth Maries for the old soda fountain type ice cream shop on the square. If you can catch a late night up there the live music scene is becoming as good as is a link. If you can catch them in town when you are here go see Seryn


                2. re: LewisvilleHounder

                  Chile en nogada is one of my fav's and hard to find. I just called Mesa to find out if they are still doing it as a special. The special this upcoming weekend is cochinita pibil, so I missed it. Que lastima. Very good restaurant.

                3. Not really new, but noteworthy:
                  Brownstone in FW has changed their menu. Which is a good thing for me as southern comfort food was never really my thing. The new menu, however, looks a bit bar food-y. Lots of dips, some flatbreads and sandwiches, and a small handful of entrees. The mr. and I plan to check it out sometime this weekend, so I'll report back.

                  3 Replies
                  1. re: alliegator

                    I noticed that. It had been on my list to try and then I looked about a week ago and the menu was entirely different than I remembered. I know Casey Thompson left, but please do post back and let me know if it's still worth going.

                    1. re: loratliff

                      I'm interested to know too. I did try the Casey Thompson 'southern' menu, and except for one of the desserts (unfortunately not mine, I just got a taste), I wasn't impressed ... and southern comfort food is my thing.

                      1. re: foiegras

                        Will let you know, loratliff and foiegras. Mr. gator wasn't feeling well last weekend, so we're going to shoot for tonight or tomorrow. I'm pretty anxious to check it out as I wasn't terribly impressed by my last visit several months ago.

                  2. Put Campo Modern Country Bistro on your list. It's in a very stylish space (the owners are design studio) on Beckley in Oak Cliff. Matt McAlister is the chef. He was the guy behind Stephen at Stephen Pyle's until he left a few months ago to stage at the French Laundry. We have been twice. It's a cool place that is casual but also sophisticated and stylish. The food is not your typical stuff. Like Ugyur at Lucia, he does all the work in house. His house cured meats on the charctuerie plate are every bit as good as Lucia. The menu is creative and interesting (crispy pigs ears, for example) and everything we had was delicious. The portions, by Dallas standards, are modest, but they are creating the feel of a high end Argentinian restaurant, but not Argentinian food (no empandas), Argentinian, like European. I can't explain it, but it's good.

                    That Campo, Lucia, Mesa, Bolsa, Hattie's, Zen, Nova, Tillman's, Enos, Lockhart and Oddfellows are all a bike ride from my house is pretty amazing, thought not great for the diet.