With a name like Best Thai, you better be great. And this place is: The fried corn patties are superb (never rubbery, never oily). The chicken dumplings are delicious (as is its accompanying sauce), and the shrimp pad Thai is spicy but never overwhelmingly so. We've never been disappointed by a single dish, the price is right, and despite the cramped and sterile ambience (this place is sandwiched in a fancy strip mall, between a beauty salon and a post office--it's no Royal Thai), we'll eat here before any other Thai restaurant in town (and there are some excellent ones, especially Chow Thai in Addison). We'll even call ahead, leave the house, and pick up an order for some in-home dining--to hell with the lack of delivery service. When we want to Thai one on, leave the driving to us. Give them 15 minutes, and they'll give you Thailand to go.

Marble Slab Creamery
This fine restaurant, well known to City Hall workers and other downtown denizens, strives to recreate diners of old with its early 20th-century menu and ethos. The daily lunch "blue plate specials" range from pork loin (Wednesday) to lamb patty with mint jelly, but Guthrie's also has salads, pasta, and burgers. The desserts are delectable, especially the pecan pie that perches temptingly atop the deli counter. But regulars are also well aware of the house's beer-battered fish and chips specialty. We hear they also have a good dinner menu, and if we ever venture downtown at night (that is, if the city planners finally deliver on their promise to give us cause to venture downtown at night), then we'll be sure to check it out.
Given as we are to indiscriminate corporate-bashing, it would have been a great joy to announce that the Smoothie King has not earned its crown. Alas, the good regent does sit best, if not cheapest. Smoothies, for the uninitiated, are tasty ice-based treats for those who crave sweetness but are scared of what ice cream will do to the ass. Anyone with a blender, an ice machine, and time to stop by the produce section of the grocery store could make them at home, but curiously, few people do. Enter the Smoothie King, which despite annoying names given to the drinks, serves up smoothies thick and delicious. For the exercise-conscious, protein shakes are available, and they're pretty tasty too. Warning: A medium size cup is enough to slake the thirst of a healthy pony.
The Landmark Restaurant
This little dish is a magnum opus in a bowl. Three little pork-stuffed pillows soak in a puddle of brisk citrus-sherry soy broth. The dumplings are plump and tender with well-seasoned specks of pork meat. They're covered with a delicious relish of leek, sesame seeds, and orange zest. This is a tight, well-orchestrated little dish. With little pillows so plush, it almost makes you wish you were a sleepy lab rat.

Rosewood Mansion on Turtle Creek
The clubby, old school dcor, the sophisticated tunes from the piano player, and the, um, of-a-certain-age crowd, demand that you order something other than "another cold one" or a Run, Jump, Skip, and Go Nekkid. Generous pours of first-rate bourbon in elegantly muscular glasses with the perfect amount of vermouth and one cherry, mmm...it just doesn't get much more tasteful than that. But don't try tying the cherry stem with your tongue and still expect to get laid.

Maguire's Regional Cuisine
It's unremarkable, yet it works. A wide tongue of catfish with a crisp golden coating is slipped between a cleaved roll and crowned with fresh ruddy tomato slices and a smear of Creole rmoulade. The fish is greaseless, crisp, and moist with stratified flakes of flesh and not a hint of river silt.

Angry Dog
We once worked at a restaurant that hosted a weekly half-priced burger night. As a result, for months we could not stomach a burger and came dangerously close to vegetarianism. Luckily, absence makes the heart grow fonder, and soon enough we were eating burgers again, doing our part to help out the national beef industry. Most of the time for lunch, we just go get a deli sandwich. But every so often, our stomach rumbles and angrily demands: "Burger! Burger!" So we motor down the street to Angry Dog, where the burgers are thick and juicy and the service is fast and friendly. A craving is a terrible thing to waste.

Juicy double-beef burgers with cheese and Thousand Island dressing, which they call Thousand Island, not "secret sauce." Beer to go or stay. You can smoke in part of the dining room. The jukebox has plenty of C&W. The ladies behind the counter know how to take an order and chew gum at the same time. And the cell-phone-per-table ratio is lower than any other spot in a 20-mile radius. Everything is jake at Jake's.

Curved leopard-print banquettes, sequestered in gauzy curtains, resemble a sheer neglige over cat-pelt bloomers. Black lacquered chairs are cushioned with leopard-print padded seats, and tables are cloaked in black tablecloths, like a black slit skirt over shiny black stilettos. The focal point of the back bar is a dramatic pair of narrow, triangular shelves bathed in the kind of neon orange favored by those who like folded greenbacks slipped into their underwear. This is the fine-dining version of a minx in homicidal regalia. Be careful how you use it.

Babe's Chicken Dinner House
No fast-food assembly line or heat lamp warming here. Manager Don Oates doesn't buy frozen chicken, so everything's fresh. The crunchy crisp breast, wing, drum, and thigh that come with the dinner have been marinated for 24 hours before being battered and cooked. Forget the calorie count and plan to go away full and happy since the side dishes include a choice of five home-style vegetables, a salad, and hot biscuits.

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