Leading up to our annual Best of Dallas® issue, we're counting down the 50 most interesting restaurants in Dallas. These spots bring something unique or compelling to the city's dining scene, feeding both your appetite and soul. Find more interesting places on our all-new Best Of app for iTunes or Android.
While tacos are commonly celebrated, the arepa, whose stuffing is placed within the masa instead of on top, deserves a lot more attention than it gets. The corn cakes are thicker and more substantial than typical tortillas, and the pocket that holds the filling makes them more portable, too.
You can find great arepas at Zaguan, stuffed with chicken dressed in avocado, ham and other fillings, and there are other hard-to-find Latin foods, too.
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How about a cachapa, because you can't get enough of corn wrapped around fillings? This one's slightly sweet and bigger than your head. It's best when stuffed with ham and an absurd amount of oozing cheese, with plenty of plantain chips served on the side for crunch.
Forget your regular tamale and try the hallaca. The mixture of meat raisins and olives is topped with corn flour and wrapped in banana leaves and steamed. It's simultaneously sweet and savory, and very filling. One will suffice for lunch.
Even a normally tedious chicken sandwich is less than boring here. The meat swims in a slightly piquant sauce that keeps the flesh moist. Douse the bread with the salsa that's served on the side and dig in. It's a classic sandwich reinvented through Latin eyes; your lunch never needs to be boring again.
No. 50: Joyce and Gigi's No. 49: East Hampton Sandwich Co. No. 48: 20 Feet Seafood Joint No. 47: Taj Chaat House No. 46: Mot Hai Ba No. 45: La Nueva Fresh and Hot No. 44: Pera Turkish Kitchen No. 43: Tom's Burgers and Grill No. 42: Mughlai No. 41: Russian Banya No. 40: Off-Site Kitchen No. 39: Bachman Lake Taqueria No. 38: Carbone's No. 37: Babe's No. 36: Barbacoa Estilo Hidalgo