Behind the counters of our favorite restaurants, people from all walks of life work tirelessly to provide us with quality food and service. It is always disheartening whenever we, as consumers, hear rumblings of owners or CEOs of places we frequent are anti-LGBTQ, racist, misogynistic or xenophobic. It’s even more shameful to realize that for years, we’ve been indirectly funding conversion camps, bills to limit people’s rights and more.
Luckily in Dallas, there is never a shortage of great food, nor are the opportunities to make a positive impact in the lives of others scarce. Here are some restaurants in DFW where you can make a positive impact with each meal.
Having served as a staple in Dallas’ gayborhood for years, Street’s Fine Chicken is an outspoken friend to the LGBTQ community. The Southern comfort hub has contributed their delicious chicken creations to fundraisers like Toast to Life, which has raised hundreds of thousands of dollars for Resource Center, an organization committed to helping provide low-cost health services to LGBTQ people.
In America, more than 443,000 children are in foster care on any given day. Once foster children turn 18, they are on their own. La La Land Kind Cafe’s mission is to employ foster children who have aged out of the system and provide them with the skills they need in order to thrive in the workplace. For each of its employees, La La Land emphasizes the importance of timeliness, cleanliness, customer relations, productivity and teamwork. The East Dallas cafe offers an incredible selection of coffees, teas, toasts and pastries, all of which are made with organic ingredients.
With five locations across DFW, Cane Rosso serves delicious, wood-fired Neapolitan pizzas made with fresh dough and quality ingredients. While Cane Rosso has won many awards for its indulgent slices, the restaurant’s founder, Jay Jerrier, is also committed to bettering the lives of abandoned dogs. Through his Cane Rosso Rescue program, Jerrier has rescued more than 350 dogs and has since opened the Cane Rosso Rescue Adoption Center in Carrollton.
Father/son duo Beto and Julian Rodarte have created a concept offering authentic Mexican dishes inspired by Beto’s time on a farm in Durango, Mexico. Since opening in 2016, Beto & Son has become a staple in Dallas’ Mexican food scene, with Julian being named one of Zagat’s 30 Under 30 chefs and their signature Nitrogen Margarita winning first place at last year’s Margarita Festival in Dallas.
Originally based in Rhode Island, Shayna’s Place is famous for its sandwiches, salads and smoothies. It is named after the owner’s cousin, Shayna, who has Down syndrome; however, her family prefers to call it “Up Syndrome,” as she maintains a vibrant, positive attitude. With its locations in Dallas and Legacy Hall in Plano, Shayna’s Place remains committed to providing employment opportunities to people with special needs.
Based in Garland, Lakewood Brewing is dedicated to creating an atmosphere that feels like home to all who enter the taproom. Lakewood Brewing is also an outspoken ally to the LGBTQ community, having created signature LGBT (Loving Great Beer Together) beer glasses and koozies. They have also previously sponsored the annual Alan Ross Texas Freedom Parade. Regardless of your race, gender or sexuality, Lakewood Brewing believes every one of their consumers should drink with pride.
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