Food and Drink

13 Fall Restaurant Openings in Dallas to Get Excited About

From triumphant big name comebacks to fresh new faces.

Photo by Kathy Tran
Photo by Kathy Tran
Photo by Kathy Tran

After more than a year of wanting to escape the present and look to the future, we couldn’t be more excited to welcome some fantastic new restaurants and bars to a neighborhood near us (or far away, but definitely worth the journey). On one hand, there are established fan favorites opening additional locations, including Fish City Grill, Sugarbacon, Palmer’s Hot Chicken, Malai Kitchen, Crisp and Green, Thunderbird Pies, Cow Tipping Creamery, and Fajita Pete’s. And on the other, there’s a bounty of new-to-North-Texas concepts, including chains from San Francisco, New York, and London, as well as locally grown brands serving everything from decadent pastries and wood-fired pizzas to juicy steaks and ostrich-stuffed mushrooms. Loosen up that belt, Dallas-it’s time to eat.

La Mina

Address: 5630 Village Glen Drive, The Village
Opening Date: Early fall 2021
The Village has transformed from a neighborhood comprised exclusively of apartment complexes to what now feels like its own little town, thanks in no small part to a huge influx of restaurants opening in conjunction with the shiny new Drey Hotel. Roundhouse Food Hall, Meridian, and Anise (which just debuted last week) are among the numerous big-name chef-helmed concepts, and soon they’ll be joined by La Mina, a modern Mexican eatery. On the menu, you’ll find barbacoa Tlayuda made with heirloom corn imported from Mexico, blue crab tostadas, shrimp and poblano mole tacos, and colorful craft margaritas.

Lubella's Patisserie
Lubella’s Patisserie
Lubella’s Patisserie

Lubella’s Patisserie

Address: 10323 Ferguson Road, East Dallas
Opening date: Pre-holidays 2021
The pastry chef behind such fine-dining gems as Flora Street Cafe and Bullion is bringing her own bakeshop to East Dallas later this year. She’s developed a following around the traditional Mexican conchas and elaborate cakes she started selling during the pandemic, and will start with a small menu of similar sweets before gradually expanding.

Sassetta
Sassetta
Sassetta

Sassetta

Address: 1530 Main Street, Downtown
Opening date: Fall 2021
The popular Design District Italian eatery might have shuttered during the pandemic, but it will soon find new life inside The Joule via of the former Americano space (RIP). Expect menu staples to return, including wood-fired soppressata pizza, lasagna al forno, and classic mafaldine carbonara, alongside upmarket cocktails and a robust wine program.

Photo courtesy of Suburban Yacht Club Coastal Cantina
Photo courtesy of Suburban Yacht Club Coastal Cantina
Photo courtesy of Suburban Yacht Club Coastal Cantina

Suburban Yacht Club Coastal Cantina

Address: 5880 TX-121, Plano
Opening date: Mid-September 2021
33 Restaurant Group Culinary Director Brian C. Luscher (the genius behind The Grape and Luscher’s Red Hots) is peddling Southern California-style food truck eats at this full-service restaurant. Crisped pork carnitas, Baja-style fish tacos, fresh catch ceviche, and a tiki-inspired beverage program all make appearances on the diverse bill.

Neon Kitten

Address: 2805 Main Street, Deep Ellum
Opening date: Fall 2021
Taking over the former Beauty Bar space in Deep Ellum, Neon Kitten promises to be a quirky Japanese eatery with a robust take-out program (including cocktails canned in-house), izakaya-style shareables, sushi, and dim sum. The beverage program will feature Japanese spirits and cocktail flights paired with specific dishes.

Photo courtesy of Rokwood
Photo courtesy of Rokwood
Photo courtesy of Rokwood

Rokwood

Address: 600 Jackson Street, Downtown Dallas
Opening date: Fall 2021
Selfie fans, take note: Downtown Dallas is in store for an Instagrammer’s paradise when Rokwood opens its massive doors later this fall. Ready your cameras for this posh expanse featuring elaborate chandeliers, lavish mirrors, and even a private emerald-hued room with a clawfoot bathtub smack dab in the middle. Cocktails skew classic, while VIP tables and bottle service will draw the see-and-be-seen crowd. A rooftop patio with excellent skyline views will join the party in 2022.

Photo courtesy of Jimboy's Tacos
Photo courtesy of Jimboy’s Tacos
Photo courtesy of Jimboy’s Tacos

Jimboy’s Tacos

Address: 9316 Clifford Street, Fort Worth
Opening date: Early fall 2021
Family-owned, California-based chain Jimboy’s Tacos is set to open its first Texas location this fall. The counter-service and drive-thru concept will showcase its iconic Original American Tacos, made with seasoned ground beef, hand-shredded cheese, and fresh lettuce stuffed inside a crispy corn shell coated with Parmesan cheese. Enchiladas, burritos, queso, guacamole, and churros round out the tasty on-the-go offerings.

Photo courtesy of District San Francisco
Photo courtesy of District San Francisco
Photo courtesy of District San Francisco

District

Address: 5100 Belt Line Road, Addison
Opening date: Late fall 2021
This San Francisco import makes its Texas debut this fall in the Village’s Parkway shopping center. The menu features globally inspired, tapas-style shareables for lunch and dinner, including oysters on the half shell, crispy smoked pork belly sliders, and hand-tossed pizzas. And if they decided to keep up with California’s daily $7 drinks-and-bites happy hour deal, it’ll be a popular addition indeed.

Photo by Kathy Tran
Photo by Kathy Tran
Photo by Kathy Tran

Rodeo Bar

Address: 1321 Commerce Street, Downtown Dallas
Opening Date: Late fall 2021
Flashback to the 1980s with the resurrection of this downtown Dallas classic inside the historic Adolphus Hotel. The original ceased operations in August 2018, which has given us just enough time to grow nostalgic for the casual, no-frills tavern. The food lineup spans blue plate specials as well as smashburgers modeled after the Rodeo’s original burger, considered by many the best in town.

Photo courtesy of Sadelle's
Photo courtesy of Sadelle’s
Photo courtesy of Sadelle’s

Sadelle’s

Address: 1 Highland Park Village, Highland Park
Opening Date: October 2021
The New York brunch institution premieres its first Texas outpost this October, complete with an all-day menu covering breakfast tacos, salads, coffee drinks, world-famous bagel towers, caviar, sliced-to-order salmon, and create-your-own double-decker sandwiches. Yum.

FireBird Fowl

Address: 2816 Fairmount Street, Uptown
Opening Date: September 2021
Don’t expect a chicken-only menu at this soon-to-open Uptown joint, where dishes made with duck, goose, emu, turkey, ostrich, and Texas quail share menu space with America’s favorite bird. If it once had wings, expect to find it fried, grilled, stuffed into mushrooms, or formed into burgers and complemented by plenty of Texas-inspired sides. Boozy ice cream and house-infused spirits are also primed to pull their weight here.

Photo courtesy of Kevin Marple and Dakota's Steakhouse
Photo courtesy of Kevin Marple and Dakota’s Steakhouse
Photo courtesy of Kevin Marple and Dakota’s Steakhouse

Dakota’s

Address: 600 North Akard Street, Downtown Dallas
Opening Date: September 2021
This historic underground steakhouse seemed gone for good after its closure was announced in mid-2020. But never say never-new owner Meredith McEneny just couldn’t let the iconic restaurant go down like that, and she’s brought on chef Ji Kang to overhaul the menu while maintaining a healthy dose of surf and turf classics.

Electric Shuffle

Address: 2615 Elm Street, Deep Ellum
Opening Date: October 2021
Its first location outside of London, Electric Shuffle’s Deep Ellum debut sets its sights on reimagining shuffleboard as a multi-sensory 21st century experience accommodating up to 16 people. Couple that with a menu of eclectic shareables and craft cocktails and you’re in business. On the horizon? Salt-and-pepper squid, meat and veggie platters, and bottomless pizza during Shuffleboard Power Hour, among other enticements.Want more Thrillist? Follow us on InstagramTwitterPinterestYouTubeTikTok, and Snapchat.

Steven Lindsey is a Thrillist contributor. 

Food and Drink

The Best Ways to Dress Up Your Summer Beers

From micheladas to shandies to fruit infusions, the power is in your hands-and kitchen.

Photo by Cole Saladino for Thrillist
Photo by Cole Saladino for Thrillist
Photo by Cole Saladino for Thrillist

Today, just about any flavored beer a person could dream up already exists in a can, from micheladas to shandies to, yes, pickle beers. But there’s still much to be said for the DIY versions of these dressed-up beers.

For one, they’re fresher (you could squeeze your own lemonade for a shandy right this instant). For another, they’re customizable: spiciness, fruit choice, how strong you’d like the final drink to be-all those are in your hands. And perhaps more importantly, they’re fun. Whether you want to spend two minutes constructing a beer-lemonade shandy or spend an hour infusing your IPA with real chunks of pineapple, there are plenty of ways to get creative in gussying up your beer this summer.

Embrace red beer

A brunch staple across the western half of the U.S., “red beer” is essentially a stripped-down michelada: just your preferred light lager of choice, plus tomato juice. But the devil’s in the details-folks can get mighty particular about their red beer specifications.

My preference is Coors Light with just a splash of Campbell’s tomato juice. It’s a pet peeve of mine when bartenders go too heavy on the tomato juice; it’s called red beer after all, not tomato juice. To make this yourself, start with your light lager of choice, then add just a splash of tomato juice so that the beer has a strong orange hue. Sip, taste, and add more if necessary.

Upgrade your salt rim

Another component of some micheladas, salt rims are more versatile than they might seem-and they complement several styles of beer. Just coat the rim of a beer glass with lime juice or water, then dunk the glass in a shallow dish of salt. Try the following combos:

• Mexican lager with a Tajin rim: Try substituting Tajin seasoning for straight salt for a bit of a chilli-lime kick. Pair this with a red beer for a michelada-like vibe.
• Gose with a herbal-salt rim: Goses are a beer style with a light salinity already, so pouring them in a glass rimmed with a rosemary salt or basil salt can add an additional flavour that doesn’t clash. Try mixing and matching fruited goses with herbal salts-how about a watermelon gose with a basil-salt rim?
• Dark lager with a smoked salt rim: Smoked salt is a surprisingly versatile ingredient because it’s way less powerful than liquid smoke. Try a dark lager (like Modelo Negro or a bock) in a glass rimmed with smoked salt for a subtle campfire vibe.

Marcos Elihu Castillo Ramirez/iStock/Getty Images
Marcos Elihu Castillo Ramirez/iStock/Getty Images
Marcos Elihu Castillo Ramirez/iStock/Getty Images

No shame in a shandy

Radlers and shandies are often used interchangeably to refer to a light-coloured beer blended with fruit juice (typically lemonade or grapefruit). Packaged versions exist, but with so many fruit-flavoured non-alcoholic beverages on the market, it’s worth playing around with some creative combos in your own kitchen. A good rule of thumb is to start light with the base beer, either a pale lager, cream ale, blonde ale, or (if you’re really a hop head) a pale ale. From there, most people blend in a splash of their favourite juice.

But here’s my preference: Use a fruit-flavoured soda. I find that adding straight fruit juice to beer often makes it too sweet and a bit flat. A high-quality fruit-flavoured soda, like the ones from Sanpellegrino, adds carbonation and fruit flavour with too much sweetness. Also, go easy on the ratio of soda to beer to start, because you can always add more soda. I find a ratio of about one part soda to three parts beer is ideal.

Infuse your beer with fruit

Your French press isn’t only for coffee-it can also act as a device for infusing fruit or other flavours into beer. If you end up with a bumper crop of strawberries or melons from the farmer’s market, this is a great way to use them.

1. Start with a new or perfectly clean French press to avoid coffee flavour leaching into your beer (unless that’s what you’re after).
2. Pour in your beer of choice. Almost any style could work here: light lagers, blonde ales, saisons, IPAs, even porters and stouts. Pour the beer into the French press, leaving a couple inches empty at the top.
3. Add some cut-up fruit. The possibilities are limitless: porter and raspberry, IPA and pineapple, blonde ale and mango, wheat beer and oranges, saison and cherries…
4. Allow the fruit to infuse. How long to leave the beer in contact with the fruit is up to you, knowing that the longer the mixture sits, the more pronounced the flavours will be. Start with 10 minutes, push the plunger down slightly, pour and taste some of the beer, and wait longer for a more intense flavour.
5. Push the plunger down all the way. Pour your infused beer into a glass and enjoy!

Make a mighty michelada shrub

Micheladas are typically a mixture of Mexican lager, lime juice, tomato juice, and salt. But recently, premixed michelada shrubs (like those from Pacific Pickle Works and Real de Oaxaca) have popped up, adding some vinegar tartness and other ingredients like Worcestershire sauce and spices to the mix.

A shrub combines vinegar with fruit or, sometimes, vegetables, and they’re easy to experiment with at home. Michael Dietsch, author of Shrubs: An Old Fashioned Drink for Modern Times, suggests that if you’re creating a shrub to mix with beer and tomatoes, beginning with a base of apple cider vinegar or malt vinegar (to match the malt in beer) plus lime is a smart start. From there, savoury additions like soy sauce will lend a Bloody Mary feel-just be sure to use a light hand with those umami-packed additions. Because vinegar and soy or Worcestershire sauce are tangy and savoury, Dietsch notes that you may want to add just a pinch of sugar to your shrub for balance.

From there, the sky’s the limit. Swap apple cider for white balsamic if you’re feeling bold, or add orange juice as well as lime. But regardless of what ingredients you use, Dietsch says it’s important to let a shrub sit and mellow for a couple days before using it. That time will let the intensity of the vinegar mellow and will ensure all the flavours meld together in perfect harmony. Once the shrub has sat a few days, give it a taste, then add a few splashes of it to your favourite Mexican lager.

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Kate Bernot is a certified BJCP judge and freelance reporter whose work regularly appears in Craft Beer & Brewing, Thrillist, and Good Beer Hunting. Follow her at @kbernot.

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