Heim Barbecue

Just outside of Love Field, Heim BBQ offers one last chance to get excellent brisket or bacon burnt ends before leaving town; or on the flip side, a succulent smoky welcome home. Jet-setting or not, head over to the hearth of Heim BBQ on Tuesdays where they have hand-battered, dipped and fried corn dogs with 44 Farms meat for just $2 each. They also have $2 domestic beer. Why, you may ask, would one not get brisket? We're not saying you shouldn't. We're just saying you should also get beer and corn dogs at 1982 prices.

Pogo's Liquors Inc

From first-rate customer service to an amazing selection of local and far-off booze, Pogo's is what every liquor store should aspire to be. Just follow their Facebook page to earn a merit badge in sommelier studies. They'll have you opining about chalky soils and "a mineral spine" in no time. They offer such interesting background on their new finds or most recent shipments that it can often sway your weekend plans, for either good or bad (likely good). And while they have fine wine, craft beer and liquor from around the globe, they also keep things local.

Bonton Farms

There's no shortage of great breakfast spots in Dallas, but there's no other place quite like Bonton Farms in South Dallas, a working farm with fresh eggs, local honey and produce plucked right out of the earth and taken straight to the kitchen. Bonton provides healthy, nutritious staples in a food desert while also creating jobs for their community. Aside from that wholesome mission, breakfast at the café is spectacular. Their sweet potato hash is made with smoked sausage, red pepper gravy and eggs. The from-scratch buttermilk biscuits topped with house sausage or bacon gravy and a farm-fresh egg make breakfast worth getting up for.

Best Kouign Amann
Taylor Adams

The kouign amann is a love letter from the northwestern tip of France. This flaky French viennoiserie is imbued with a nefarious amount of butter, sugar and a touch of salt. There are other kouign amanns around town, but Bisous Bisous' is unique because unlike others it is rolled like a cinnamon roll — how chef Andrea Mayer discovered them in a street cart in France — as opposed to a four-corners method. Unroll the pastry instead of biting straight into it (that's too harsh for this delicate food anyway) and see how each ring offers something a little unique.

Best Corn Dog
Taylor Adams

Dallas is decidedly a corn dog town. And outside of the annual Texas State Fair, the best place to snag one is at CornDog With No Name, where they aren't mimicking fair food but elevating it. While they have a classic corn dog, they also offer a spicy version with jalapeño and cheddar-infused pork sausage. The brunch corn dog is a breakfast sausage dipped in funnel cake batter with bacon and maple syrup. They even have a plant-based corn dog and Best Maid dill pickle corn dog. The best part is you can get a cocktail to go with from their full bar. Be sure to save room for the flaming funnel cakes.

Best Sushi
Alison McLean

Dallasites are used to top-quality sushi thanks to restaurants like Tei Tei Robata and Tei-An. But that same level of care and attention to quality hasn't always extended to spots in the suburbs. Enter Ebesu, which just celebrated its second birthday in downtown Plano. Run by restaurateurs whose other businesses are inside Japan and designed by a Japanese restaurant architect, Ebesu has a first-class menu of sushi, sashimi and generous rice bowls overflowing with fresh seafood. (One rice bowl topped with ikura, or salmon roe, is served while another employee bangs on a little drum.) Oh, and the best red-meat sushi roll in the area is Ebesu's Super-Long Niku!, which lives up to its exclamation point by being very long indeed and very delicious.

Neighborhood Services

A good cocktail is worth the splurge and at Neighborhood Services the classic daiquiri will run you about $11 before tip. But considering how delicious and refreshing it is, this is a steal. With a fairly simple combination of ingredients — a base of El Dorado 3-year cask-aged rum and a blend of cane syrup and lime — the classic daiquiri delivers on flavor. From the first waft of rum, you'll feel transported to the islands, which, after almost two years into a pandemic, is a much-needed feeling.

Best Nashville Hot Chicken Sandwich
Steven Monacelli

Hot chicken places have come and gone in North Texas over the past couple of years, but what sets Palmer's apart is heart and soul. Having lived in Nashville for over 30 years, founder Palmer Fortune studied the craft of Nashville hot chicken meticulously. Palmer's offers Nashville hot chicken, shrimp, catfish and more at a range of heat levels from the "naked" for those with sensitive palates all the way up to "napalm," which should come with a medical waiver. Plus, they offer fries, mac and cheese, greens, pimento cheese grits, and all the Southern fixings your heart desires.

Best Chinese Restaurant
Brian Reinhart

Though it's technically Taiwanese, Wu Wei Din's menu encompasses a lot of exceptional dishes from a variety of regions. Regulars order pork chop fried rice, first-timers grab bowls of spicy wontons, and everyone comes away happy. Wu Wei Din also won acclaim for its pandemic takeout operations, which included clever steps like modifying the thickness of dumplings' wrappers so that they wouldn't tear apart on the drive home. Don't miss "golden kimchi," a mild appetizer portion of the fermented favorite. A second location is under construction in Lewisville, with plans to open this fall.

Best Smash Burger
Dallas Observer

Barbecue destinations made a big splash this year, but the bigger splash has been the smash burger craze: Burgers aggressively smashed to a thin patty leave you questioning every traditional burger you've ever had. Why was it piled so high? Was that really how a burger should be made? Well, the crew at Dayne's Craft BBQ in Fort Worth is also a believer in the smash burger. What was initially an attempt to cut down on waste turned into one of the best smash burgers you will eat. Two patties composed of prime beef trimmings are smashed and enveloped with white and yellow cheese, topped with crisp vibrant red onions and covered in a house special sauce.

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