Best Neighborhood Restaurant 2006 | Kitchen 1924 | Best of Dallas® 2020 | Best Restaurants, Bars, Clubs, Music and Stores in Dallas | Dallas Observer
There's nothing like branding yourself bland. "This is a generic restaurant concept. It is a throwback. There is no special identity. It is what it is--a place to get well and nourished," the Kitchen 1924 says of itself. OK. But in truth, Kitchen 1924 sweats special identity. Look at all of the neighbors bellying up to the bar and huddling at the tables. Look at all of the sunglasses the Kitchen offers exclusively for use during its Sunday "hangover brunch." Kitchen 1924 roosts in monochromatic tones in its Lakewood Shopping Center home because, you know, color is supplied by the food and guests in true neighborly fashion--a tasty pub for generic camaraderie. How generic? French onion soup is humbly minimalist and un-pompous. Then there's the deviled eggs and succotash. Flat-iron steak, marinated in red wine, garlic, shallot and soy, layers shadowy hints of Asia without resorting to a full-out global gastro pose. Sometimes Kitchen 1924 serves she-crab soup. This is a throwback? Whose generic wool is being pulled? Generically put, Kitchen 1924 is pleasantly delicious, a neighborhood room as distinctively comfortable as its Lakewood ecosystem. Now go eat.
First, let's get the obvious out of the way. The food is good, service is great and the ambiance is chic. But as you wait for your smoked chicken ravioli or your vegetarian calzone, beware the complimentary basket of garlic bread rolls. The homemade "doughballs" are served warm with fresh garlic and oil poured over. Don't let the tiny size fool you. One after another is easy, and before you know it, you're full before your meal comes out. No matter. You can always take the food home, but stay for the fresh bread. A great date place too, but don't expect lots of smooches soon after.
It's their top seller. They gladly admit it. And who are we to doubt such boasts? It's made to order. It's as vividly green as the poison tree frog mugs on those "Save the Rainforest" direct-mail fund-raising pieces. Shove in a chip. The guac is chunky, nutty and fresh. This is stellar stuff with white onion, lime, cilantro and roasted garlic stirred into a bumpy slurry. You can feel the citrus concussion from your cheek membranes all the way down to your hangnails.
If limes could die and go to heaven, they would find themselves in owner Teresa Trevino's Key lime pie. This small, family-owned catering company in Mesquite has quietly made its mark among local schools and businesses, but its secret weapon is this dessert. With a whipped instead of gelatinous filling, it is as if limes ascended into the sky, evaporated into a cloud and then fell to earth landing in a pie crust. Yes, it's that good! Enough so that Trevino won't reveal the recipe. How about them apples? Oops, wrong fruit.
Should you ever find yourself with a leisurely weekday morning, head here for an iced chai latte and muffin. The bustling of Starbucks is nil here as the low sound of the TV and warm but colorful dcor slowly wakes you into the day. Whether reading the paper, using the free wi-fi or just catching a morning break, Crossroads is that stop-and-smell-the-roses place you might just be looking for. If you need to tend to that caffeine addiction or sweet tooth, give this place a shot. But only if you promise to sit and enjoy it.
The moment you step into Kalachandji's, you sense the mood of the East--or maybe it's just the lack of air conditioning. No, it's more than that. It's the diverse clientele, the unusual food and something else that you just can't put your finger on. Ah, it's the chance to broaden your horizons through the exposure to vegetarian food, Hare Krishnas and a darn good tamarind cooler. The buffet is good and inexpensive (and all you can eat), and who knows? You might even have a little fun getting outside of your safe, button-down, plastic fantastic world while chowing down on curried vegetables, rice pudding and pappadam in an open-air courtyard. Kalachandji's is also your source for Hare Krishna and Indian merchandise, including incense, books, statues, jewelry, clothing and more. And if the mood really takes you, slip off your shoes and spend a few moments meditating in Kalachandji's palace, adjacent to the restaurant.
Most anyone who dines out in Dallas (and now Frisco) knows about Terilli's. They know that Terilli's has a diverse menu and that everything is good. But maybe you were put off by the boisterous party atmosphere of dinner at Terilli's. If so, it's time to revisit and enjoy the laid-back calm of brunch. Personally, we can't get out of an eggs Florentine rut, but with so much deliciousness to choose from, we may someday have to branch out. But, hey, with brunch every Sunday, there's plenty of time to experiment. If you don't do the "breakfast" thing, Italchos feel right at any time of day. So if you can manage to drag your lazy ass out of bed, slip on your hangover disguise next Sunday morning, because Terilli's has your Bloody Mary waiting.

Best Place for Vegetarians to Take Carnivores

Clay Pit

There's no reason for meat-eaters and vegetarians to come to blows over who gets to choose the restaurant this time. Granted, vegetarians most often get the raw end of the deal, forced to eat a limp afterthought of a salad whenever their pals want to hit the steak house. And our heart goes out to flesh-eaters who are forced to eat a delicious meal of tofu or noodles at a veggie place...sorta. But at Clay Pit, no one has to compromise; vegetarians can choose from tandoori vegetables, vegetable naan pizza and all manner of curries and more, while meatatarians can have beef, chicken, lamb and seafood cooked up in myriad ways. Worried it'll be too spicy? Just tell your server you want it mild and your dish will be so smooth even your grandma with an ulcer could eat it.
Sometimes you just gotta have it. You've been thinking about it all day, and the longing's just growing stronger. When your sugar jones kicks in, pray that you're near Voila Bakery. They have tempting sandwiches and soups for those normal days, but when your sweet tooth really needs satisfaction, it's straight to the dessert case. From an all-American apple tart to a deliciously creamy mini cheesecake or the scrumptious chocolate mousse cake, you will be stuffing your face with empty calories in no time. Hauling the kids around when the DTs (dessert tremens) hit? The brats'll love the spaghetti ice cream--vanilla ice cream extruded into thin noodle shapes, topped with "tomato sauce" (raspberry sauce) and "Parmesan" (crumbled white chocolate).
Often, the thought of having to wait for your food at a sit-down restaurant is downright depressing. When you've spent 45 minutes debating where to go, another half-hour rounding up the kids/friends/family and 20 minutes driving to and parking at your destination, you're simply ready to eat. NOW. You want the instant gratification of a snack that's plunked down even before the drink order. Just chips and salsa would cut it, but at Gloria's they go that extra step--a second dip. In addition to the tangy, chunky salsa, Gloria's pre-prandial offering includes a blended black bean dip, just the amount of protein you need to settle you in for the main course. And, best of all, it's free.

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