La Popular Tamale House
Taryn Walker

This category is a tough one — salsa for what? Tacos, tamales, chips, eggs? So we looked for something comprehensive: It's a tossup over whether the red or green salsa is the best here, but this Old East Dallas spot is a go-to for salsa that's good on so much. It's made fresh and sold by the pint so you can take it home to last you the week.

TJ's Seafood Market
Kathy Tran

Dallas' seams aren't exactly bursting with seafood options, so we certainly celebrate this one that's constantly good. Fresh items — whether you're taking from the market or ordering off the takeout or dine-in menu — are what make us come back for more. Take dinner to go or grab some staples like a fish dip to have on-hand at home.

BEST VIETNAMESE RESTAURANT
Kathy Tran

This one's an easy choice: Lá Me has been a long-time favorite for good reason. Even if you take it to go, flavors and textures hold up for meals that are some of our favorites in all of Dallas. Try the shaken beef, any of the vermicelli plates and absolutely the egg rolls. Don't forget a Vietnamese iced coffee while you wait for your food.

Go for beer, go for pizza, whatever you do, do not go without ordering wings here. You order per wing, each of which is the full cut — no choosing between a flat or drum here. You'll get the drummette, ringette and tip. The salt and pepper rub is a must with an easy seasoning on the juicy chicken, or go for the classic Buffalo.

BEST CHINESE RESTAURANT
Alison McLean

Chile peppers are the name of the game at Hunan Bistro, where dishes can be buried in chopped peppers that are the deep, dusky color of a Dallas sunset. But don't let them intimidate you and don't be worried by the enormous menu, either. Look for red-braised pork, spicy pig ears and whole fish. If the spice is too much, turn to milder but equally good fare such as pork spare ribs, dry-fried green beans or ultra-savory eggplant. There aren't many Hunanese restaurants in North Texas, and it's hard to top the rustic but high-intensity flavors here.

We've ordered from countless restaurants for takeout in 2020, and every restaurant using Square is making it easier on us. When you're craving one particular meal, Square's user interface is easy and quick to load, and noting the exact time for pickup makes it even better.

Boulevardier
Kathryn DeBruler

This Bishop Arts District restaurant has been temporarily closed throughout the pandemic, but memories of sitting at the bar enjoying freshly shucked oysters still haunt our dreams. This is an ideal spot for brunch or dinner, but either way, get wine and oysters while you take in the vibe of the space. This is one place we really can't wait to see reopened.

BEST WINE SHOP

This Knox-Henderson wine shop is the perfect place to meet friends on the patio for a glass of wine and a meat board — whenever it's safe to meet with people. During the pandemic, it's been a good go-to for ordering our favorite wines. If they don't have it, see if they'll bring it in for you — then enjoy a glass from their list on the patio while you're picking up.

BEST BAKERY
Bisous Bisous Pâtisserie

Sure, the lemon meringue cruffins are beautiful. The precision of every drip, dollop and sprinkle on the house-made cakes may bedazzle you. And the strawberry-basil macarons and framboise cakes are so light in touch and bright in flavor they're hard to forget. But, the true mark of a baker is creating magic with the basics: flour, butter and sugar. Don't sleep on these at Bisous Bisous. The croissants and kouign-amanns will ruin you. Let it happen.

BEST BARBECUE
Beth Rankin

In these trying times, Slow Bone is the barbecue hero we need. We may not know when the urge for barbecue will strike, but Slow Bone has us covered at lunch any day of the week. We may not know if we have enough time to grab some barbecue, but Slow Bone's line moves quickly, when it's there at all. We may not know how we'll recapture Slow Bone's brilliant flavor at home, but their vacuum-sealed meats deliver the goods. Like many other establishments, they've adapted quickly in the time of coronavirus. Sure, we miss sitting down and eating from their pastel trays, but the goodness of Slow Bone still shines, no matter where we partake.

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