The neon is shining at Spork now, as long as you show up after sunset. The casual burger restaurant opened earlier this month at the hands of Eric Justice (former chef at Mexican Sugar) and other Dallas-area power chefs. Tim Byres and Katherine Clapner were among the chefs tasked with the menu design.
The space used to be a Sonic, and the team made good use of every legacy design element. The counter is now a bar, and the eat-in parking stalls have been turned into a huge outdoor patio. (It's not available for dining yet. The owners are still working through the permitting.)
That's a shame when the weather is as good as it has been these last few days. I listened as a woman who looked like she'd just left the tennis courts ribbed the staff for not letting her party grace the tables outside. She didn't win. And then she sent back her salad because she forgot to request it with dressing on the side -- North Dallas problems.
But those permits will go through soon enough, and when they do this patio will be filled with people sipping on boozy milkshakes while they wait for their meals. There are also frozen cocktails (hello, dreamsicle) and a solid selection of craft beer from both local and national breweries.
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The main dining room is not so bad, either. Glass windows frame three sides, keeping things nice and open. AstroTurf with crop circles cut into the grass lines the wall behind the bar, and more art confirms the galactic theme. Spork is for space cadets and alien burger lovers. I can't wait to see this place is like for Halloween.
As for the burgers, they're made from beef that's ground in the kitchen daily. They start at $9 and creep up as high as you'd like them to go depending on the number of toppings you request. They don't come with fries -- you'll have to pay extra for that -- and since you've already got your wallet out you might consider the kimchi version, which comes with fermented cabbage and barbecue beef.
One last thing: Since we've brought up crop circles, we might as well continue to analyze the symbology at Spork. The bathrooms are marked with the universal male and female symbols, but they look as though they are mid-abduction via a tractor beam. I'm not sure what this is trying to convey, but if you notice a bright light from above while you're in the john or anywhere else in Spork, you probably want to run.
Spork, 6110 Frankford Road, 214-643-6871, sporkdallas.com