Luscher’s is still my go-to place for rounding out my square edges in Deep Ellum. Loosen your belt? It's best you leave your belt at the door. Start with hot dogs, two at a time, and then make your way through an Italian beef while slugging local beer.
Because food tastes better when it’s served up with a side of feel-good, Café Momentum (1510 Pacific Ave.) could spend a lot of time on a list like this. Chad Houser spent years hosting small pop-up dinners around the city raising money to fund a restaurant that could make a difference in the lives of at-risk youths. Now his restaurant has a permanent and much deserved home.
At the least, you deserve some time at the bar with a warm cup of tea and a chocolate-y pine nut tart. You could pull this sort of hit and run any given night, but if you have more time, you really ought to stay for a proper dinner. This little Henderson Avenue gem is still going strong and in addition to a positive review here, the DMN recently anointed the place restaurant of the year.
If your ailments include hunger or melancholy, you can find a Remedy in the soda fountain that opened last year on Greenville Avenue. Desserts here are completely over the top, both in creativity and serving size. If you come, bring a friend because there’s no way you’re finishing a sundae on your own after you put away a cheeseburger. Chef Danyele McPherson’s cooking evokes a deliciously updated time capsule.
The Austin powerhouse has arrived. Uchi has a solid reputation for delivering clean, fresh, artistically interpreted sushi that pretty much blows the doors off. Don’t even bother if you’re looking to order spicy tuna rolls. If you’re looking to check the new restaurant out but don’t want to break the bank, be sure to hit happy hour from 5 p.m.- 6:30 p.m. where you can expect deals on sake and delicious bites.
Monkey King Noodle Co.
This Deep Ellum takeout has customers buzzing about every time I drive by it. They stand at the window ordering food, and they stand on the street slurping from cups of noodles. If you have a canine friend, you might bring it along with you. Soup bones have been handed out in the past, and dogs deserve to eat well, too.
Every time I duck my head into Small Brewpub the place has a buzz, and it’s more than the house brewed beer. Small takes the old brewpub model and turns it on its head, with both inventive beers and an adventurous kitchen. Don’t expect a pretzel with mustard or a sausage on a bun. Chef Misti Norris composes plates that defy expectations.
If you’re looking for a meal on the run, Ten may be one of the very best places to visit in Dallas. Note: You can’t take your soup with you, but you can get in and out of the tiny ramen house as fast as your noodle-slurping skills will allow you. Hit yours with some of the spicy chili oil and get ready to sweat ramen that will haunt you. You’ll almost certainly be back again.
Campestre Chula Vista
A drive to Fort Worth is required, but the cost of admission is more than worth it. Campestre Chula Vista continues the Revolver Taco tradition with a new location on a hill on the outskirts of Fort Worth. Standouts include freshly made tortillas served with goat roasted until it falls apart, and daily taco specials. Don’t miss out on the margaritas, either.
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Mot Hai Ba
This modern Vietnamese restaurant has become a dependable neighborhood gem. Diners can order traditional dishes like pancakes stuffed with seafood, or creative items including steak cooked in betel leaves and braised leeks.