With the proliferation of media outlets that cover food — and the social media users who are quietly being paid to shill food and drink — the Dallas food scene becomes, at times, an echo chamber. Did we really need to be reminded countless times in a week that Shake Shack was opening in Uptown? Of course not; but we (and every other food outlet) told you about it, oh, approximately six times. When big-name chefs launch new projects or cheeky specials, you're guaranteed to hear about it — but the one thing you're not always guaranteed to find is information about under-the-radar eateries that serve incredible food on the periphery.
We're trying to change that. Here are a few of our favorite DFW spots that aren't likely on your radar right now — but should be:
Mi Lindo Oaxaca is a Dallas Dining Secret Too Good to Keep
Writing about Mi Lindo Oaxaca feels like breaking a vow of silence or unmasking a secret society. The practically unknown restaurant in a practically unknown Oak Cliff strip mall specializes in vibrant, cheap Oaxacan food — and dishes that you've likely never had, like the memelita with chapulines (grasshoppers).
Who's Afraid of Blood Sausage? Not the Regulars at Ajumma Kimbob Deli
Dallas’ Korean restaurant scene is one of our most diverse, exciting culinary assets. If you only know Korean food for barbecue and rice bowls, there are exciting discoveries ahead: the fried chicken at Rice Chicken, seafood and soups at Dal Dong Ne, Gangnam Sushi’s gonzo specialty rolls, beef broth at La Han Bat. And, at Ajumma Kimbob Deli, you’ll find delightful cold spicy noodles, lightly-fried dumplings and chili-kicked stir-fries. Oh, and don’t forget the blood sausage.
Canary by Gorji to Become Dallas' First No-Tipping Restaurant
After yesterday's big news, it is possible that you've heard of Canary by Gorji, the first full-service restaurant in Dallas to adopt the no-tipping business model. But that's not the only notable thing about this North Dallas spot — chef Gorji cooks up a cadre of classics with a light Mediterranean touch and flawless execution. If you want to try the most perfectly cooked piece of fish or meat that's ever crossed your lips, this is the place to visit. And starting next week, you won't have to do the math in your head to figure out the tip.
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Across from Richardson's Most Famous Chinese Restaurant, Another Gem Hides in Plain Sight
Everybody knows the virtues of Kirin Court, but impress your friends next time by skipping the obvious and heading for First Emperor Chinese Restaurant across the street, where you'll find gorgeous takes on Szechuan favorites like ma po tofu and tea-smoked duck, Taiwanese home-cooking dishes and Americanized foods like General Tso’s chicken.
Hon Sushi Brings Culinary Artwork to a Carrollton Strip Mall
If you want a meal that looks as stunning as it tastes, this strip mall sushi spot is a solid choice. Hon Sushi has been open since March, and aside from a handful of regulars, the crowds have yet to find it. On two visits, not one dish really disappointed; the seafood is fresh and the craftsmanship is there. The biggest risk at Hon Sushi is that the food will be too pretty to eat.