Spoilers ahead. Tread lightly.
If you aren't watching the Netflix original series House of Cards, stop reading this article immediately. If you're at work, go home, turn on Netflix, and prepare to spend the next 12 hours being consumed by one of the best shows sort of on television. You won't regret it.
If have been watching, you might have been surprised to learn that Claire Underwood, wife of Kevin Spacey's Frank Underwood, is a Dallas native. Highland Park, of course -- she's the daughter of a wealthy businessman. I always knew there was something I liked about that woman, aside from her ruthless brilliance and impeccable wardrobe.
Claire's husband is an important politician, sure, but everyone makes it back home to see their folks from time to time, which got me to thinking. Where would Claire Underwood eat when she came back to Dallas? I think these five places are a pretty good start.
1. The perfect place for a back-room shady deal The Underwoods are both, by nature, calculating political animals. Even a casual trip back home wouldn't be just for pleasure, especially when you're running the country. Dallas is one of the country's largest centers for business, so surely there's at least a few corporate big-wigs that Frank Underwood needs to entertain between visits with his in-laws. So Claire, the ever-poised political wife, would make a reservation at the Rosewood Mansion on Turtle Creek for Frank and some sinister oil and gas executive to talk shop. Maybe they'll hash out the details of their latest deal to screw over the little guy, all over one of chef Bruno Davaillon's perfectly paired tasting menus.
2. Dinner with Claire's stuffy old parents Claire Underwood doesn't mention if her parents are still alive, but let's just assume that they are, and that they're the dictionary definition of hoity toity. At least one stop on the Underwoods' Dallas dining tour would have to involve a stuffy and awkward dinner with Claire's parents. At Al Biernat's in Highland Park, Claire's cattle-ranching papa can chow down on a prime rib the size of his head, while Frank enjoys an entire bottle of one of the wine list's pricier options to hide his seething contempt for small talk.
3. A rendezvous with her new, Dallas-based secret boyfriend. Now that Claire's relationship with Adam Galloway is over, she'll have to find a new dude to scratch the itch that Frank just can't seem to. Lounge 31 in Highland Park Village is the perfect place to cozy up with a secret lover. After an afternoon of picking up fierce-ass shift dresses at Chanel, Lounge 31's cozy (and private) booths are the perfect place for Claire and Mr. Dallas to make eyes at each other over a plate of caviar worth more than my car.
4. Much-needed refreshment after a run A fitness junkie like Claire Underwood doesn't stop working out just because they're on vacation, especially when you've got a backdrop like Highland Park to run through. After a vigorous run through one of the city's most beautiful neighborhoods, Claire would head to Number One / Le Jus, also in Highland Park Village, to restore all her electrolytes and whatever else you lose when you work out. I'm not sure if Claire is more of a No. 06 (watermelon, lime and mint) or a No. 02 (carrot, beet and apple) kind of girl, but you can bet that she'd be refreshed and ready for a long flight back to DC after either. And a Xanax.
5. Indulging Frank's BBQ jones Most of the good barbecue in Dallas is in neighborhoods that Claire Underwood would probably never venture to, but Peggy Sue BBQ in Snider Plaza is a perfectly suitable place for Frank to satisfy his love of barbecue ribs. Even though he doesn't seem like the type of guy who likes to break out of his routine, hopefully he'll try some BBQ Snob Daniel Vaughn-approved pulled pork and brisket to get a real taste of Texas. Now that Frank won't be able to get his favorite barbecue ribs from Freddy (RIP Freddy's BBQ Joint, you will be missed), maybe he'll find a new love in the Lone Star State.
It's a shame (or maybe it isn't) that Frank and Claire Underwood aren't real people. But if they were, it's nice to know that our fair city would be able to feed them just as well as Washington, D.C.