Burgers, Casseroles and Labor Day Weekend: This Week in Dallas Dining

Bliss. Labor Day weekend is so many things at once. It's license to indulge too many off the beaten path burgers. It's an excuse to dick off on a Monday because nobody's in the office anyway. It's a sign that maybe, just maybe, the glowing hell-orb that hangs heavy over your shoulders every time you step outside will soon relent. It's also a sign that the State Fair of Texas is close. So get out of your office and fast as you can and buy your self a cold one. But let's wrap up this week first

This week I reviewed Mercat, the small bistro that opened downtown on Harwood Street earlier this summer. I loved the dining room, but the food needs some work. It would be nice to see them pull off some improvements because the price point is reasonable, and downtown could use a reputable French restaurant.

Elsewhere on CoA we interviewed April Barney, the culinary-instructing, special event-supplementing, pop-up chicken- and waffle-making, pint-sized chef. We also lamented the (hopefully temporary) closing of our favorite taqueria, found a buttery cubano up in Plano, and just in case this weekend convinces you to never return to your job, set you up with a new gig on the farm.

Over on the Eats Blog, Leslie Brenner went tourista and reviewed Y.O. Ranch Steak House in the West End. Brenner documented a rare occurrence in the Dallas world of seared meats -- the staff didn't ask her to slice into her steak and check for doneness. We talked about steak bullies here about a year ago.

On Side Dish, Nancy Nichols posted a heart (and belly) warming ode to old-school casseroles. You know, the the ones that bubble and drip with melted cheese and canned soup, and are always topped with potato chips, corn flakes or something else with crunch. And then because she has no concern for our well being whatsoever, she reminded us that Stampede 66 has some fried chicken that's worth the calories.

On TMBBQ, Daniel Vaughn posted an interview with Gaylan Marth, the man behind Big Boys Bar-B-Que. Apparently cooking brisket is the key to maintaining youth, so you should probably read this one carefully.

Months ago, we told you about the second Chip's location, which will open up in East Dallas ... sometime soon. The Lakewood Advocate has a brief update on their progress, including the addition of a patio.

Patio burgers -- sounds like a good thing to do on Labor Day weekend, doesn't it. So why are you still reading this?

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