With everyone back to loving the in-person dining experience, there are plenty of new, beautiful venues to try, as well as favorites to try again, according to our savvy eatery devotees, Rob Giardinelli (Austin, Houston, and San Antonio) and Cynthia Smoot (Dallas).
The team behind Austin’s popular restaurant Suerte has opened its latest concept at the site of the former Eastside Cafe. Este offers a delectable array of fresh seafood offerings through their close relationships with premier fishmongers, coastal Mexican cuisine, and charcoal cooking.
SAVOR EVERY SECOND
Second Bar + Kitchen has recently opened its latest location in the East Austin Hotel. With its delectable array of Modern American cuisine paired perfectly with the craft cocktail menu, the restaurant also features a patio perfect for a Texas-sized brunch al fresco.
San Francisco-based Marufuku Ramen has recently opened its second-ever Texas location. A highlight of the menu is the Hakata-style Tonkotsu ramen featuring milky and unami-rich broth and ultra-thin artisanal noodles that perfectly complement the broth and Cha-shu made from specially curated pork. Additionally, it features a variety of mini-sized rice bowls, izakaya-style appetizers, premium beer, and sake.
Known for its Chicago-inspired, classic American cuisine, D.L. Mack’s recently opened its second location in Preston Hollow. Mack’s blends the approachable, all-occasion feel of its sister concept, Hudson House, with its own distinctly unique Chicago-inspired backdrop. The menu features classic American cuisine by way of carefully sourced purveyors with an emphasis on house-made ingredients.
LIKE A GODDESS
Dea, an upscale Italian spot serving steaks, fish, and homemade pasta is the latest concept from famed restaurateurs Lynae Fearing and Tracy Rathbun. Dea translates to goddess in Italian and the food is indeed heavenly. Diners will experience a transformed space, which draws aesthetic inspiration from the Italian coast. Don’t miss the very Insta-worthy flower goddess mural outside painted by Dallas artist Alli K.
When The Ivy Tavern opened, it quickly became a neighborhood staple for cocktails, craft beer, and tasty bar fare. It boasts one of the best patios in Dallas, dotted with gorgeous shade trees strung with lights, table and community bar seating, and a fireplace. With an elevated stage for live music and DJs, and a variety of entertaining games such as large Jenga blocks, Connect 4, pool, and darts, one can pick your pleasure.
THE SKY’S THE LIMIT
Ciel, named after the French word for sky, is the latest creation of Executive Chef Joseph Geiskopf, whose résumé includes stints at iconic Napa Valley-based establishments, French Laundry and Vespertine. Located at the axis of Uptown and River Oaks, the creative, sustainable menu features a fusion of French and Japanese cuisines.
AN EYE ON FOOD
Mexico City-based Ojo de Agua recently opened its first Texas location. The vibrant and holistic menu features scrumptious breakfast, lunch, and dinner options. Must-try items include lobster grilled cheese, acai bowl, and avocado truffle toast. Pair it with one of Ojo de Agua’s wine-based fruit cocktails or a mimosa mixed with a variety of juice options.
Combining the very best of Peruvian and Japanese cuisine, Pacha Nikkei recently opened its first Nikkei concept restaurant. The seafood-focused menu features multiple ceviche options including a delectable lobster ceviche, Pulop a la Parrilla. The menu also includes Nikkei sushi rolls, which add Peruvian and South American flavors to the Japanese classic. Pair with an array of Japanese and Peruvian spirits.
Ladino is a new Mediterranean restaurant located in the Pearl. They use a wood fire oven to make delectable Middle Eastern and Balkan dishes featuring freshly made pita, coal charred eggplant dip, Jerusalem mix, and meat dumplings in yogurt. They also offer a fresh take on Agristada, which is a Sephardic fish in a lemon and egg sauce.
SLICE OF WONDER
The Pearl’s newest pizza place is so hot it’s retro cool. A nod to the heyday of neighborhood pizza joints, WonderSlice pizza offers all the classics one seeks when enjoying the ultimate comfort food. The menu includes classic and specialty pizzas, homemade subs, salads, soft serve ice cream, and of course, pizza by the slice for those on the go.
WINE AND DINE
Pharm Table in Southtown is an Apothecary Kitchen that features globally inspired locally sourced food, botanical cocktails, and a highly curated 27-bottle wine list. New to the menu is “Wine Wednesdays” a tasting that pairs small bites with approachable wines around a specific theme such as female winemakers, a varietal, or a specific region.