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Recommendations for 1st Visit to Dallas/Ft. Worth in July

Hi! In July it will be our first trip to Dallas - will be staying at the Hilton Anatole and will have our own vehicle. Any great recommendations for a BBQ, burger place and higher end restaurant for a birthday dinner? Also any suggestions of "Must See" attractions would be great!

Thanks!

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  1. See the recently started thread about "Off-Site Kitchen" for starters.

    1. Where are you visiting from? That might help steer our suggestions for a higher end place towards something not as common in your area.

      For barbecue, I'd recommend Pecan Lodge at the Dallas Farmers Market. I also second the recommendation for Off-Site Kitchen although the only downside is it's mostly outside seating and you are visiting in one of our hottest months. Right now they are only open for lunch. There is some shade on the back patio but it's just something to keep in mind in case you are like me and melt in the sun. One of my favorite burgers is at Bolsa, served only at lunch I believe.

      In general for upscale, some of my favorite places are Local, Stephan Pyles and Hibiscus.

      2 Replies
      1. re: lckeating

        Second Pecan Lodge for BBQ in Shed 2 at the Dallas Farmers Market.
        Open, Thursday-Sunday.

        1. "recommendations for a BBQ, burger place and higher end restaurant for a birthday dinner".

          Off-Site Kitchen is a new sandwich place (Includes burgers) owned by a local restauranteur in an industrial area (he has successful mid-range restaurants in other parts of town.) Good sandwiches/good prices, but oh yeah.... counter seating in a hallway kind of room - well, there's deck/patio seating outside, but in July? Nah.... Other than convenient location several blocks behind the Anatole, it is not relevant to a celebratory event, particularly for a first trip to Dallas. Sorry, but you need all the facts. Take a look at the also recent thread/recs @ http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/843940.

          Additionally, look at the very well received Nana at the Anatole and Fearings at the Ritz-Carlton. (Both Chefs Dean Fearing and Stephan Pyles are long time regional favorites providing interesting selections.) For very high end - The French Room. For Steak - Pappas Brothers. For loud/fun Tex-Mex - Pappasitos (regional chain). For subdued, classical Mexican - take the 30 minute drive to Lanny's Alta Cocina in Fort Worth.

          Whichever you choose, make reservations sooner than later.

          1. If you are going to be town over the weekend, the Grape has a great Burger but just on Sunday.

            http://thegraperestaurant.com/ It's also a lovely romantic restaurant.

            1 Reply
            1. For your higher end restaurant, suggest Marquee Grill or Bijoux. Must-see attraction ... how about the Impressionist exhibit at the Kimbell. From there you'll be very close to the Fort Worth Zoo, which is ranked in the top 5 nationally.

              2 Replies
              1. re: foiegras

                CocoaNut and foiegras have a great idea. One of the best things about Dallas is Fort Worth. Drive over to Cowtown, visit the Kimbell and the Modern (the museums are next to each other and are architectural gems), visit the zoo, and have dinner at Lanny's, Ellerbe's Fine Foods, or Lonesome Dove Western Bistro.

                1. re: foiegras

                  I see you're coming in July, and I mentioned an exhibit that closed this month. There's currently a Lucian Freud exhibit at the Modern (which has a very nice cafe--both the food and the view of the reflecting pool), and the permanent collection at the Kimbell is still well worth a visit. If you like Georgia O'Keeffe (and I do), the Amon Carter has five of her paintings.

                  I like going to Lonesome Dove after a museum visit--it's a nice straight shot up University to the stockyards. Bonnelle's specializes in wild game and is well worth a visit, though not quite as conveniently located.

                  A nice shaded outdoor destination that's also very close to the arts district is the Japanese Garden inside the Botanical Gardens.

                2. I have to say you MUST try Pecan Lodge for outstanding smoked BBQ, a co-worker took me today for lunch - I had the "pitmaster" because I wanted to try as much of the meat as I could and I needed not to be in a food coma for the afternoon. You do need to be there before 11 AM when they open or the line is outrageous - there is only one register so it doesn't move quickly - but it does give the kitchen time to keep up with the orders reasonably well.
                  My favorite was the "fatty" brisket - it was delicious while my co-worker liked the pulled pork better.
                  I would say you can't go wrong with anything there - though I was not too impressed by her mac & cheese.
                  Overall some of the best BBQ around!

                  1 Reply
                  1. re: keli175

                    A big second for Pecan Lodge. The best in Dallas!

                  2. For Burgers I suggest Maple and Motor. I've been there several times and have not been disapointed yet.
                    Also, Jakes is a Dallas tradition
                    If you want some different Burgers (venison, Bison, Elk, and I want to say Kangaroo but dont quote me on that one) in a cool place check out Twisted Root

                    1. Thanks so much everyone for the suggestions!

                      3 Replies
                      1. re: ScrapbookinGal

                        For some excellent Mexican Vera Cruz style seafood go to Mesa on Jefferson. Their mole is excellent as is the ceviche for starters. Any of the seafood entrees are excellent, my favorite is the redfish. The neighborhood is very hispanic but they have valet parking in the evening. http://mesadallas.com/

                        1. re: tiomano

                          A huge second for Mesa! A true gem of authentic Veracruz cooking at it's best! The whole Reyes family is there to insure you enjoy the finest, Mexican food in Dallas

                          1. re: tiomano

                            Third for Mesa ... I think it would be good for your birthday place. Their mojitos are pretty nice too. Parking used to be iffy, but that has completely changed. I was able to park right outside the front door last time. It's quite lovely inside.

                            If you valet, the tickets are handwritten--don't worry, you do get your car back ;)

                        2. I would suggest Lazaranda for Mexican in Addison. It's modern nice and by far the best ceviche in the area.