Late Lunch, Tuesday, Downtown Dallas Area - Thinking Bolsa
Lunch on Tuesday, downtown Dallas area, we have between 2 p.m. and 5:30 p.m. or so to eat lunch and do the JFK thing. My friend (he travels & eats all over the world) is in town for the afternoon. We are both REALLY into food, but it doesn't have to be fancy. It can be exotic or not, I just want whatever it is to be really good for what it is. We want to catch up over a good meal. We will probably have 2 kids in tow, but they are mini-hounds. I do NOT want a kid's meal, I just don't want to drop $90 on lunch for 4 people. [The kiddos go everywhere (going away parties at The Belmont Bar & Gordon Biersch & various banquets) and are chatty (like Mama), but usually well-behaved.] Oh, I live here and we'll have my car.
I am thinking Bolsa. Tillmans and Smoke also sound good, but I was initially thinking they might wind up being more than I want to spend. OK, I also have my eye on a cocktail at Bolsa. ;-)
Mesa, Tei-an, Nova & Victor Tango aren't open during the timeframe. (Speaking of Victor Tango, has anyone tried the grilled octopus? My little boy has been NAGGING me to try octopus again. I guess he forgot when he tried it when he was 4.)
We don't want Italian or Lockhardt. I looked at The Porch, but the menu didn't bowl me over.
As for Bolsa, I've looked on this board & see that the bruschetta and flatbread are often recommended. What about sandwiches? Soup? Also, please send cocktail recommendations!
(Have you had a Pisco Sour there? I've always wanted to try a Pisco Sour, but don't want to risk a so-so one. I think I saw somewhere that most of their cocktails are $5 during Happy Hour, does that sound right?)
If Bolsa doesn't work out and you don't manage to talk me into Tillmans or Smoke, I'm considering Hattie's. (I've never been.) Kalachandjis is also a maybe. Just because. :) Haven't been there in about 12 years though.
If you have additional recommendations that are hopefully $10 or under for lunch, I'd be happy to hear them. I know that taco stand is across from Bolsa, but I don't want the kiddos eating tacos in my car and we want to visit over lunch.
I am totally into desserts, but I bake and get VERY cranky when I eat cake that is just OK. I would consider hitting Dude, Sweet Chocolate afterward, but my friend just left Belgium. Any other can't miss desserts in that immediate area? That aren't $8 or more?
p.s. I've lurked on Chowhound for YEARS. This is my first post. Yes, I promise I will report back with what we wind up doing. I really did spend a couple of days reading up on the board before I posted this, I hope my questions reflect that!
re: Carrollton Foodie
Thank you for your comments! It looks like my friend's plans changed, and lunch is off. :( I think I'll just have to find another excuse to go down to OC for lunch soon and report back.
sike101, I know the places I mentioned would be above $10 for sure. I just meant if you suggested new places, I would appreciate mentions on the lower end, as opposed to places more expensive. I hadn't heard of Medina. The menu looks yummy! Thank you! Do you recommend any particular drinks at Bolsa?
Bourbon! Actually I think their wine menu is really good, and easy.
I have had a few of their cocktails (mostly bourbon based) and all were good.
My favorite place for craft cocktails is Cedars Social. The food is great, crowds are manageable, and a ton of great new and classic drinks.
Friend came back into town, so we finally had that meal. He chose Cedars Social. I'd always been curious about trying a Pisco Sour, so I ordered one. (It was good, but not a new favorite drink.) The big plates didn't strike my fancy, and I wound up with truffle fries and the truffle mac and cheese. FWIW, he also made it to Smoke while he was here and said that was his favorite meal of the trip. Thanks again!
I was thinking Smoke would be your best bet. I also see nothing wrong with Dude, Sweet after coming back from Belgium ;) The Belgian chocolate I've had has been very refined and lovely, but DSC is like muscle chocolate. Completely different experiences with the same ingredient, and I find DSC more interesting.
All a bunch of my favorite places. But, I can't sit down at Bolsa for less than $40 (drinks are always big chunk though). In fact it might be tough to do under $10 at many sit down places that you mentioned
If you have kids in tow, I'd skip Nova, it's basically just a bar, with good food.
Of course you can't go wrong with Smoke. If you want to stay in OC, you could try Eno's. The pizzas aren't your garden variety and might be a hit with kids and adults alike. Calle Doce, El Ranchito and Gonzalez all have reasonable lunches and are go-to spots for tex-mex.
If you're downtown, I'd suggest Medina in Victory. The food is great and might be inticing for your budding foodies.