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Tuesday, July 23, 2013

D Magazine : The Best Brunch Spots in Dallas 2012

This is a great list of restaurants in DFW offering unique and quality brunch menus! D Magazine : The Best Brunch Spots in Dallas.  Although this list has been out for a while, it is still worth reposting! Be sure to check each restaurants website for their latest menu and business hours for brunch.

This D Magazine : The Best Brunch Spots in Dallas list features a descriptive review from a wide array of restaurants from North Dallas, Oak Cliff, Rockwall to Uptown. This list of 20 restaurants is sure to deliver on flavor!

And in no particular order... As originally published on Dmagazine.com 2/22/2012


The Best Brunch Spots in Dallas

24 egg-tastic options for the week’s most important meal.

(from left) Smoke's Double Barrel Bloody Mary
 and the Grape's shredded oxtail and banana pepper hash
photography by Kevin Marple

EDITOR’S NOTE: We define brunch as a weekend-only meal. Restaurants that serve breakfast throughout the week—while they may be perfectly tasty—were not eligible for this list.

1. Malai  Kitchen UPTOWN

Brunch served Saturday and Sunday

Brunch at a Thai restaurant may sound off-putting, but Malai Kitchen’s breakfast fare with a Thai-Vietnamese twist will set you straight. Don’t go expecting Sterno-heated chafing dishes; everything here is cooked to order. We found the cozy patio surprisingly quiet on a Saturday at noon, but the friendly service made up for any loneliness we may have felt. Each diner receives an amuse-bouche of sticky rice and eggplant dip. Chef Braden Wages turns French toast into an Asian delicacy. He tops thick slices of a Vietnamese baguette with flambéed bananas. Warm coconut syrup, which is made with coconut milk and palm sugar, and contains hints of tamarind and mango, comes on the side. His version of eggs Benedict is done Malai style, which means coconut-spiked biscuits, Thai basil, shrimp, and poached eggs, all covered with a Thai chile hollandaise sauce. We admit we were leery of this dish, but it turned out to be the highlight of the meal and worth every artery-clogging calorie. Other offerings include a scrambled egg mix with curry “salsa,” Vietnamese noodle soup, fried rice topped with a fried egg, and a Vietnamese burger. There are $3 mimosas and $5 Bloody Marys, but splurge on a Lemongrass Fizz, a concoction of Ketel One Citroen, St-Germain, lemongrass syrup, and sparkling wine designed by mixologist Jason Kosmas. The flavors don’t collide with the cuisine.

Malai's Banh Mi French Toast
photography by Kevin Marple

Brunch served Sunday only

The Libertine is a full-service establishment for serious beer drinkers. Every Saturday night they tempt with pints (and pints) of Belgian Chimay and sinful-sounding lagers such as Southern Star Bombshell Blonde. On Sunday morning, the kitchen offers a brunch menu designed to ease the pain those pints inflicted the night before. 

Take a seat—preferably the same one you occupied only a few hours earlier—and order a Snake in the Grass, a soothing concoction of green chartreuse, St-Germain, citrus juice, and Peruvian bitters. As the fog begins to lift, pluck sautéed shrimp from creamy manchego cheese grits. If you’re craving eggs, go with a ragin’ Cajun-style Benedict with andouille sausage and grilled crawfish piled atop an English muffin and covered with a poached egg and a runny dollop of hollandaise. Need a stiffer kick-start? Order the chilaquiles, a spicy mixture of eggs, tortilla slices, and tomatillo sauce. 

Brunch served Sunday only

Long before North Oak Cliff’s Bishop Arts District became one of the city’s more popular culinary destinations, this graceful Southern belle set the standard for fine dining south of the Trinity. It’s easy to see why. Brunch at Hattie’s is as sleepy and seductive as a Mississippi drawl, and the offerings are down-home delicious. The Hangtown Scramble is a gustatory hangover helper: herbed scrambled eggs, hash browns, and bacon-wrapped fried oysters all topped with Parmesan shavings and a red chile hollandaise drizzle. Breaded pork cutlets come with fried eggs and sweet potato hash browns. For those with a sweeter taste, cornmeal griddle cakes and sourdough French toast with bananas Foster sauce are sinfully indulgent. Yet every time we visit Hattie’s, we have a hard time not ordering the chicken and waffles: a perfectly fried chicken breast sitting atop a crispy waffle drenched in spicy maple syrup. It’s an off-the-
menu gem. 

4. Komali UPTOWN
Brunch served Saturday and Sunday 

Owner and Chef Abraham Salum’s love affair with chiles is evident all over Komali’s brunch menu. From rich pasillas to smoky chipotles to mellow poblanos, his regional Mexican cooking is soothing and fragrant, a far cry from cheesy-greasy Tex-Mex (not that there’s anything wrong with that). With its sisal-covered walls and airy, light-filled interior, Komali feels like a Baja getaway. Brunch entrées are likewise a respite from the ordinary. Huevos ponchados feature two corn sopes—thick masa patties lightly fried—topped with chorizo, poached eggs, and pasilla hollandaise. It’s a zesty, dense dish for those with hearty appetites. A lighter option is the lump crab-stuffed crepes bathed in a lovely poblano cream and queso Oaxaca. Migas and chilaquiles—no strangers to most Texans—are traditional Mexican breakfast options cooked well by chef Salum. For a sweet ending, you can’t go wrong with sugar-dusted churros. At Komali, they come with a cup of Mexican hot chocolate.

5. Restaurant Ava ROCKWALL
Brunch served Sunday only

Don’t let your big-city snobbery show. Though this charming and rustic restaurant is located in historic downtown Rockwall—yes, Rockwall—its contemporary American fare is some of the finest in North Texas. Chefs/owners Randall Copeland and Nathan Tate’s farm-to-table mantra is evident in the list of local produce and meats they use: Athey Farm eggs, Barking Cat Farm greens, J.T. Lemley’s produce, and more. Likewise, their brunch is fresh and satisfying, with offerings changing with the season. One thing remains constant: every brunch begins with complimentary homemade biscuits. A self-proclaimed biscuit aficionado at our table declared Ava’s big, fluffy, moist biscuits the finest he’s had in Texas. That’s high praise. The smoked brisket scramble is a ridiculously enormous plate featuring pecan-smoked brisket, eggs, potatoes, queso fresco, and fried tortilla strips. Roll it all up in a slightly charred flour tortilla and spoon on some roasted tomato salsa. Cinnamon roll French toast has a welcome granola-baked crunch with plenty of warm, spicy cinnamon flavor while not being too sweet. A side of house-smoked bacon certainly doesn’t hurt. That same delicious bacon appears in Ava’s three-cheese-and-spinach quiche. With brunch this fine, you might catch yourself plotting your next visit to Rockwall. Or some casual house hunting.

6. Dish OAK LAWN
Brunch served Sunday only

By night, Dish is one of the hottest clubs in town, with a sleek, colorful bar, several shimmering chandeliers, and a DJ booth thumping out beats well into the early morning hours. All of that makes the contrast even more surreal on Sunday mornings, when the club turns into a sophisticated restaurant serving what is probably the gayborhood’s best brunch. Gone are the dance floor and the DJ but not the colorful cocktails and pleasant party atmosphere. The menu offers all manner of remedy for your throbbing headache, from the light (a Cobb Martini salad) to the hearty (a scramble of short ribs, potato, onion, tomatoes, and a chile hollandaise sauce). A signature breakfast sandwich comes piled high with smoked ham, bacon, a fried egg, and white cheddar cheese. The bacon-fried chicken and soft, fluffy malted waffles—covered in warm maple syrup, of course—are tasty enough to make anyone forget the mistakes of a night spent sinning. 

Brunch served Sunday only

Sunday brunch at the Maximo Cocina Mexicana & Margarita Lounge has the same luxury and authority you would expect from a five-star hotel. No surprise. Chef Amador Mora worked for the Rosewood Mansion on Turtle Creek for 23 years, and you can feel that polish and cohesion on the plate. The menu reflects his unique viewpoint of high-end crossed with Mexican—a fusion of traditional cuisine with a Mexican twist. Fried chicken and cheesy mashed potatoes, for example, get a drizzle of poblano gravy. Fried eggs are served with black beans and soft corn tortillas, and eggs Benedict is done “Pueblan style,” with the eggs propped on corn sopes instead of English muffin. French toast uses Mexican bolillo bread; its accompanying butter is sweetened with Mexican piloncillo sugar. Waffles come with agave nectar syrup instead of plain maple. Pancake options are novel, too, with bananas or chocolate chips. Granola with fruit and yogurt is an anomaly until you remember that Mora made it daily at the Mansion (where granola is still featured). Everyone gets a complimentary basket of bread, and the fresh juices include orange and watermelon. Cocktails are fusion, too: the signature Maximo Heat has muddled jalapeños, and at brunch it’s a mere $6.  

8. Nick & Sam’s Grill UPTOWN
Brunch served Saturday and Sunday

Perched on one of the more prominent corners in Uptown, this restaurant has patrons who are almost as beautiful and savory as executive chef Constancio Rodrigues and corporate chef Samir Dhurandhar’s culinary creations. Yes, it’s a taut crowd at the popular casual sibling of Nick & Sam’s Steakhouse. Arrive early and grab a prized seat on the patio while you choose between a starter of crispy breakfast flautas stuffed with scrambled eggs and serrano peppers or N&S’s famous sticky buns, studded with pecans and raisins and drizzled with caramel. Brunch entrées range from the classic (Toad in the Hole with barbecue pork and poached eggs set within a slice of toast and topped with deviled hollandaise) to the whimsical (Cap’n Crunch-coated French toast). Considering its lineage, one would expect steak here to be expertly prepared, and Nick & Sam’s Grill doesn’t disappoint. The flat-iron steak is tender, perfectly cooked, and accompanied by two eggs, bearnaise, and a corned beef potato hash cake. For the fat phobic, fresh-squeezed juices in 10 varieties and a “hangover” smoothie with organic low-fat yogurt, fruit, and mint make it easier to fit into those skinny jeans. But from the looks of things, Nick & Sam’s Grill is the one place where the see-and-be-seen crowd of Uptown throws caution and carbs to the wind. Of course, a $6 carafe of mimosas has that effect. 

9. Tillman’s Roadhouse NORTH OAK CLIFF
Brunch served Sunday only

This popular Bishop Arts restaurant wears its yee-haw bravado proudly—albeit with brocade wallpaper, Murano chandeliers, and Eames midcentury chairs. Here, co-owners Sara Tillman and Todd Fiscus put a stylish spin on the classic Texas roadhouse. Likewise, chef Cody Brandt introduced a playful new brunch menu last year that’s littered with gussied-up Southern and Texan touches. Eggs Benedict features fried green tomatoes, corn relish, and bacon-flavored mayo. Big, fluffy biscuits are blanketed in sausage poblano gravy. And Tillman’s chiles rellenos is among the city’s finest, stuffed with scrambled eggs, pulled pork, Oaxacan cheese, and roasted poblano gravy. Sweet treats include brioche French toast with Grand Marnier maple syrup and braised apples, as well as a starter of monkey bread covered in caramel sauce and cream cheese frosting. Yee-haw, indeed. 
(from left) Jasper's Crab Cake Benedict and banana malt
pancakes topped with black currant conserve and
vanilla whipped cream

photography by Kevin Marple

10. Jasper’s PLANO
Brunch served Saturday and Sunday 

Serving “gourmet backyard cuisine,” this handsome and popular Shops of Legacy restaurant is part of restaurateur Kent Rathbun’s burgeoning empire (Abacus, Blue Plate Kitchen), and casual, down-home touches can be tasted all over the tempting menu. Need proof? Look no further than Gramma Minnie’s fried chicken. The brunch-only offering is the stuff of childhood memories: cast-iron fried and simply seasoned with salt, pepper, and granulated garlic. Black pepper gravy with a kiss of maple syrup gives the dish its seductively sweet finish. Jasper’s other brunch offerings are equally nostalgic while exuding a modern twist. Vanilla French toast is topped with caramelized honey-banana syrup. Pancakes—flavorful with bananas and malt—are topped with black currant conserve and vanilla whipped cream. Classic steak and eggs features a wood-grilled flat-iron steak sliced and served alongside smoked bacon gravy and chile-lime biscuits. And as for those biscuits? Order an extra side. Kissed with a bit of heat and citrus, they are oddly addictive and will inspire a battle over who gets the last one. Better yet, make it two orders. 

11. Nosh Euro Bistro  PLANO
Brunch served Sunday only

Veteran Dallas chef Avner Samuel and his wife, Celeste, have finally struck a successful culinary vein. They closed their fine dining restaurant, Aurora, in 2010, and reopened the Highland Park space as the more casual Nosh Euro Bistro. The New American menu features a few of Avner’s greatest Mediterranean hits, and, judging from the crowds, it’s a match made in heaven. Recently the couple opened a second location in Plano, and that is where we found ourselves seated at a large community table sipping bottomless sparkly sangria ($10) and brunching with an almost-full room of late-morning diners. The brunch menu is basically the Nosh lunch menu plus five brunchy items: braised short rib tacos, buttermilk fried chicken breast and thigh with biscuits and gravy, Spanish chorizo hash, and a traditional eggs Benedict, as well as a rogue version made with beef tenderloin, “melted onions,” bacon, and béarnaise. The best bites came from the finely diced roasted potatoes mixed with strips of chorizo and red peppers topped with a pan-fried egg and drizzled with a smoked paprika aioli. The dark yellow, almost orange, yolk was firm. Once pierced by the tine of a fork, however, the lavalike liquid swirled slowly around the tasty potato hash. We could not resist the temptation of the butterscotch pot au crème. Sweet sin on a Sunday, this thick, rich pudding with two shortbread cookies is evil genius in a cup.

12. Al Biernat’s PARK CITIES
Brunch served Sunday only

Expensive cars idle in the valet line, but inside Al Biernat’s at brunch, jeans and flats have replaced suits and heels. The dim lights of dinner service have been raised, giving the dining room a brighter, lighter vibe. But besides a costume change and a flipped dimmer switch, not much else goes casual at Al’s in the morning. The service remains impeccable, and the food still meets every expectation. A basket of pastries comes gratis, and it takes a hearty helping of willpower to keep from filling up on croissants and iced cinnamon bread. But resist you must, because the brunch menu offers two full pages of deliciousness to explore. The lobster and scrambled egg tacos, for instance, consist of two large flour tortillas piled high with sweet lobster chunks and fluffy egg; they are accompanied by chips and salsa. The side of cheese grits comes with a bit of a conundrum: too good to share, too big not to. Another not-so-casual 
element? The price. Brunch for two can easily reach $100

13. Parigi OAK LAWN
Brunch served Saturday and Sunday 

The crowd is well-heeled and the vibe cosmopolitan at this chic neighborhood cafe serving the well-to-do of Oak Lawn and the Park Cities (translation: the gays and the grays) for more than 25 years. Owners/chefs Janice Provost and Chad Houser and chef Rolando Garcia champion local, seasonal ingredients on their tight yet tasty brunch menu—usually six items in addition to their typical lunch menu—with choices changing biweekly. That means one visit you might indulge your sweet tooth with decadent Nutella-and-banana-stuffed French toast or classic blueberry pancakes with walnut cinnamon butter. The next visit you might opt for a savory creation such as baby buttermilk biscuits covered in Italian sausage gravy or a sandwich of bacon, arugula, cherry tomatoes, cheese, and eggs in a flaky, buttery croissant. The people-watching is top-notch as well, with some of Dallas’ best interior designers regularly frequenting Parigi. Who knows? Maybe you’ll pick up a decorating tip or two. 

14. Cane Rosso DEEP ELLUM
Brunch served Saturday only

Owner and Pizzaioli Jay Jerrier wasn’t content to turn out some of the more authentic and delicious Neapolitan pies in Dallas. No, he also had to create a killer brunch menu. Brunch? At a pizzeria? That skepticism will quickly be muffled by a blanket of Jimmy’s spicy sausage gravy. The same hot soppressata found on many of Cane Rosso’s pizzas is blended with braised pork, elevating the lowly breakfast hash into something special. Yawn-inducing eggs Benedict is made memorable by replacing the usual suspects—Canadian bacon, hollandaise, an English muffin—with crispy pancetta, Calabrian chile gravy, and fried polenta cakes. Even the benign-sounding coffee and donuts is anything but. Cane Rosso serves cute zeppoles—deep-fried dough balls made with ricotta—in a paper sack along with a chocolate dipping sauce. Best of all, the typically standing-room-only restaurant is much quieter on Saturday mornings, allowing for a quick start to the day. That is, at least for now. 

Brunch served Sunday only

All five branches of this home-grown chain host one of the more jammed Sunday brunches in town. It runs a customer-friendly six hours, from 9 am to 3 pm, and for those with an appetite, it represents a tremendous value. For $17.95 ($6.95 for kids ages 6 to 10), you get access to an enormous buffet that pairs breakfast items like eggs Benedict with Southwest dishes such as fajitas and blue-corn cheese enchiladas with red sauce. If you want meat, they have plenty of it: brisket, glazed ham, sausage, and bacon. If you want old-school casserole, they have King Ranch. But the signature is the black bean adobe pie—a sweet corn cake stuffed with smoky black beans and cheese and steamed like a tamale so it stays moist. Bypass the line at the omelet station for Tex-Mex egg options such as huevos rancheros and migas. Even with this bounty, it’s hard to resist Blue Mesa’s trademark chips. Bite-size portions of flan let you sample a taste even if you didn’t save room for dessert. Did we mention free mimosas and poinsettias (champagne with cranberry juice)? 

16. Toulouse Cafe and Bar KNOX
Brunch served Saturday and Sunday

In Ratatouille, the Pixar movie about a rat becoming a chef in Paris, the motto is anyone can cook. We beg to differ. That’s why we head to Toulouse to get a French fix. The red leather booths, soft yellow walls, and hardwood floors of the dining room are inviting. But we prefer to sit on the patio, which has some of the best people-watching in town. We critique the running form of the athletes on the Katy Trail, diverting our attention only when New Orleans-style beignets arrive. The pastries are covered in a generous shower of powdered sugar and cooled off with cappuccino sauce (crème anglaise flavored with espresso). As the runners work on their fitness, we dive into our entrées—short rib hash with sautéed spinach, caramelized onions, two poached eggs, and hollandaise sauce; and the Omelet Provencale with ratatouille vegetables, sautéed spinach, and creamy goat cheese. If you’re aiming for a healthier brunch, go for the Katy Trail Omelet, made with whipped egg whites and served with a side of fruit. Want to burn off some calories after your decadent brunch? Not a problem, just hop on the trail. And don’t worry about wearing your sweats to brunch. At Toulouse, being trés chic is passé. 

(from left) The Grape's rainbow trout and fried chicken biscuit 
photography by Kevin Marple
Brunch served Sunday only

Know this about brunch at The Grape: a reservation is not required, but you should make one anyway. The tiny dining room and patio fill up fast, and the last thing you want is to be turned away after you’ve already gotten a whiff of the aromas wafting out of chef/owner Brian Luscher’s kitchen. When Texas Monthly named The Grape’s classic cheeseburger—served only at Sunday brunch and Sunday and Monday dinner—the best burger in the state in 2009, the already-popular brunch spot got a big bump in business. Depending on your taste in burgers, those TexMo cats just might be right, but don’t put all your brunch eggs in the burger basket. The breakfast on a bun is everything breakfast should be—eggs, homemade sausage, and cheese on a huge pain au lait roll. The polenta cheese fritters are the perfect side for the table to share. And the spicy Bloody Mary—served with a Spanish olive, a chunk of sharp cheddar cheese, and a hunk of salami—could almost be a meal on its own.

18. Meddlesome Moth DESIGN DISTRICT
Brunch served Sunday only

It’s known for its beer, but the Meddlesome Moth’s kitchen turns out a mean brunch. The dark interior with Dallas art and the stained-glass windows from Dallas’ original Hard Rock Cafe create the perfect setting to nurse a headache. (The Oak Cliff Coffee Roasters French press coffee also lifts your spirits.) The names of the brunch dishes are as well thought out as the ingredients. We especially enjoyed the Mother and Child Reunion, a fried chicken breast tenderloin topped with perfectly poached eggs on a bed of peppered grits and spicy jalapeño gravy. Once we satisfied the savory side of our palate, we turned our attention to our sweet tooth, opting for Neuske’s Badass Bacon Waffles with warm caramel apple compote and Brie fondue. The waffles have rendered Neuske’s bacon in the batter and are topped with three perfectly crispy strips. As we sat eating and drinking, we watched hipsters, church-goers, and yuppies file in and out of the restaurant. We timed it just right and stuck around until it was appropriate to have a beer. It seemed like the right thing to do. 

19. Whiskey Cake PLANO
Brunch served Saturday and Sunday

Here’s a restaurant located smack in the heart of the suburbs that any inner-city-dwelling hipster could love. At Plano’s Whiskey Cake, the eclectic look is industrial downtown loft meets Arts and Crafts movement, and the kitchen mentality is a laudable farm to fork. Oh, and the portions are huge. Take, for instance, the steak and egg burger. It’s a two-handed delicious mess with a brisket meat pressed patty, sunny-side-up egg, Muenster cheese, bacon, red chile aioli, and—deep breath—hollandaise. Rich, tangy, sweet, and peppery, it’s everything you want in a burger and breakfast squished between a soft, eggy bun. Chicken and waffles—having its moment on brunch menus across North Texas—features bacon in the waffle batter and smoked chile hollandaise poured over fried chicken and scrambled eggs. No less decadent, thick-cut brioche French toast is stuffed with mascarpone, apples, cranberries, and cinnamon, then topped with toasted almonds. 

Sunday, February 10, 2013

Local Diner - Coppell , TX

The Local Diner of Coppell, located just off the corner of Sandy Lake Road and Denton Tap Road is a family style restaurant serving up a hot breakfast in a nostalgic 50's style diner. Quietly tucked into the suburban neighborhood of Coppell, it's breakfast is nothing short of comfort food at it's best! Reviewed by many other publications, including the Dallas Morning News, D Magazine, and the Dallas Observer the Local Diner has earned the opportunity for one more breakfast review!

Keeping things simple, as most diners do, Local Diner still manages to offer a bright, fun, and comfortable, restaurant that still offers counter service with a cozy feel. The menu is large and offers all the breakfast favorites, but is not limited to lunch and dinner.

Although the table was a bit small for the large spread of food sampled, it was delivered fast and piping hot! Sampling the classic core items, coffee, a buttermilk pancake, biscuits and gravy, corned beef hash, bacon, and hash browns was just enough to tell that this place knows breakfast. The coffee was a good mild breakfast blend, the corned beef hash was freshly ground, and the sourdough biscuit was great! The buttermilk pancake was anything but disappointing and the other breakfast staples were all prepared perfectly. There was nothing too special or creative about this breakfast, it was just simply a good breakfast!

Service was fast and friendly and the overall value was good, with large portions and quality cooking! And having the coffee carafe on the table helped make sure the joe never stopped flowing. Join their e-club and you get 20%, just for signing up, making it an ever better value. The restaurant itself was clean and comfortable. The decor was a little cheesy, but the 50's style diner is hard to replicate in any strip mall. Overall this is a good place for a hot breakfast if your in the area. They have another location in Irving that has not yet been reviewed by DFWbreakfast.com, but will certainly be on the list!

Local Diner on Urbanspoon

Thursday, February 7, 2013

Old West Cafe - Denton, TX

Old West Cafe has a few locations around the Dallas Fort-Worth area, including the Denton location that recently was awarded Best of Denton 2012! Located just off the corner of Teasley and Dallas Drive, in a some what inconspicuous wood faced building, Old West has always been a good breakfast spot for myself when in the Denton area, but the recent award for Best Breakfast constituted a special visit and review of this small, local breakfast spot.

It is a pleasure to report that the Old West Menu, which expands across breakfast, lunch, and dinner has  continued to improve over the years. Updating their menu regularly, the have continued to offer a variety of breakfast choices and deliver fast and friendly service! Sampling several items during this recent visit was nothing less than awesome! Coffee was hot and fresh as you would expect. The big and fluffy buttermilk pancake, severed with peanut butter syrup was great. The Train Robber breakfast burrito was huge and delicious. The biscuits and gravy were offered with a choice of sausage or country gravy. The Tex-Mex Panhandler wasn't too spicy, but was
undoubtedly fresh and the tortillas were grilled perfectly. And last, but certainly not least was the amazing french toast, which was some of the best french toast ever, was crusted in cinnamon toast crunch cereal and to die for!

The service at Old West Cafe in Denton has always been fast and friendly, but just because they call them self "Old" and offer that small town, country cafe ambiance, it doesn't mean they aren't keeping up with the times. Their new table side ordering system makes service even faster! The servers use an Apple iTouch to key in your order as they take it and eliminate wasted time traveling to and from the kitchen. The cashier's have a pretty good setup now too, having you sign your credit card slip directly on the iPads they use as a cash register getting you in and out faster than before!

It is great to see the people of Denton know a good breakfast spot when they see one! It looks like Old West will also be a strong contender for the DFWBreakfast.com, Best Breakfast of 2013 award. The place is clean, comfortable, offering a good food, at a great value. Check it out and leave a post below about your visit!

Oldwest Cafe on Urbanspoon

Thursday, January 17, 2013

The Diner of Dallas- Formally Norma's Cafe

The Diner of Dallas is a long standing, well established cafe/diner. Although it was formally known as Norma's Cafe the owners, the people, and recipes remain virtually unchanged. Located in Farmer's Branch, just east of the Beltline & Webb Chapel intersection The Diner of Dallas is a great place for breakfast in the Addison, Carrollton, N. Dallas area!

The Diner of Dallas is not the most modern restaurant, but lives up to the quote painted on the side of the building, "Not good, just good cooking!"

Offering Breakfast, lunch, and dinner, The Diner of Dallas is an old fashion greasy spoon that delivers good, hot food at fair prices, with fast and sassy service. The old school jukebox and fortune telling weight scale helps add to the ambiance of this 50's style cafe. Used to film different TV shows such as, Walker Texas Ranger and ABC's What Would You Do, the Diner of Dallas is full of character!

The Diner of Dallas has a big menu, but breakfast is where it's at! Offering simple, classic breakfast plates including; bacon & eggs, buttermilk pancakes, corned beef hash, migas, eggs Benedict, and biscuits and gravy The Diner of Dallas does a great job of getting the food out hot and fresh! Portions are huge and fairly priced. Although quality is what you might expect at a greasy spoon, they do a good job serving up a satisfying breakfast!

The Diner of Dallas may not offer the most polished or professional service, but they are always friendly and fast! They also offer counter service, which is hard to find in this part of town, and helps make eating alone not so lonely. The decor and ambiance is very eclectic, others might say a bit junky, but none the less the restaurant is clean and comfortable.

Although this is a great place for breakfast, it may never make a "best of" list, but it is worth a visit! They have good reviews from other critics and customers, including the Dallas Morning News and Yelp!

Check out The Diner of Dallas and share your experience here in the comments section below!

The Diner of Dallas on Urbanspoon

Sunday, December 30, 2012

Esperanza's Bakery Fort Worth, TX

Esperanza's Restaurant & Bakery is a family owned, local flavor which is undoubtedly popular and especially for their Tex- Mex style breakfast. As the sister restaurant to the famed Joe T. Garcia's, which is located just across the street in old town Fort Worth, Esperanza's Restaurant & Bakery is a Zagat rated and Trip Advisor favorite. With honorable mentions in Texas Monthly and by various other critics, this restaurant earned the opportunity to compete for DFW Breakfasts's Best Breakfast of 2012.

Located just off of North Main Street and Park Place Avenue, near the historic Stock Yards of Fort Worth, Esperanza's attracts tourist and locals serving breakfast, lunch, and dinner, and offers a full service bakery at the north entrance of the restaurant. Although sweet bakery breads are often a breakfast favorite, our focus was to experience breakfast on the full-service side of Esperanza's Restaurant.

Sampling the restaurant's "top items" on a couple of different occasions, the first breakfast selection to review at Esperanza's was their Migas (breakfast tacos) with Chorizo (Mexican sausage). This Tex-Mex favorite breakfast entree is prepared with eggs, white cheese, fried tortillas strips, shredded chicken, along with a mild red sauce, served with refried beans, Mexican style potatoes and flour tortillas. However this sample of the famed "house special" on our visits was poorly prepared with an unbalanced amount of corn strips, making it more of a nacho platter with eggs. The red sauce was also very mild and not exactly what a local would expect at an authentic restaurant such as Esperanza's. The tortillas served along with the Migas on the other hand were fresh, fluffy, and very tasty.

The Huevos Rancheros was also prepared with an unbalanced amount of ingredients. Prepared with two fried eggs on a toastada, topped with a ranchero sauce, this enteree was completely floating in ranchero sauce causing the tostada to become soggy and very disappointing overall.

Getting back to the basics of breakfast, their Buttermilk pancakes were not actually boosted as a specialty or house favorite, but as a breakfast favorite, it was sampled and following the trend of the other entrees, was not very spectacular. A bit over cooked and dry, the pancakes offered very little redemption for the Esperanza's breakfast.

The coffee however was a familiar Royal Cup brand and offered a mild arabica blend, perfect to compliment any breakfast.

The service during multiple visits to this restaurant has always been less than friendly and attentive. Although prices are very reasonable, portion sizes are large, and the restaurant itself provides an authentic ambiance, the overall value here is average, at best. Share your opinion here about what you think of Esperanza's. It may not make the DFW Breakfast, Best Breakfast of 2012, but Esperanza's has certainly become an icon in the Fort Worth area after 35 years and must be doing something right.

Esperanza's Mexican Cafe & Bky on Urbanspoon

Monday, June 11, 2012

Poor Richards Cafe

Poor Richard's Cafe located in Plano, just at the southeast corner of 15th Street & Avenue K is a great place for a good old fashion, greasy spoon breakfast! The breakfast menu at Poor Richard's is simple and to the point.  Although you will not find any unique or creative dishes here, you will find a good, down home breakfast!

Poor Richard's restaurant is a simple place with little to expect, other than good food. The restaurant is large and has plenty of seating to let you get in and out quickly. The servers use hand held mobile computers at your table side to enter your order, so the kitchen gets the order instantly! This is great if you are in a hurry or just really hungry.

Sampling the fluffy buttermilk pancakes, biscuits with cream gravy, home fries, fresh eggs, juicy sausage, and crisp bacon was great. The large portions help compensate the simple homestyle presentation and make everything on the menu a good value.  It will be easy to leave Poor Richard's full without having an empty pocket.

The service is what you would expect at an old greasy spoon, but they will get you fed. Although there is nothing special or unique about Poor Richard's Cafe, it is a good place for a basic breakfast. They won't be making the DFW Best Breakfast 2012 List, but they will be earning a spot on the favorites list in Plano. Check them out and let us know what you think! Did you get full!?

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