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cool restaurant cool neighborhood

We're visiting Dallas from Chicago (our second visit). Both times we've stayed downtown near the museums and eaten at Stephan Pyles and loved it, but we have a car this time and are interested in exploring a little. Any suggestions about cool neighborhoods with good restaurants (we'd like to avoid spending quite as much as at SP, but mid to upper range is okay -- cheap eats are also okay, as long as we can get a drink with dinnner [we're on vacation!]. We'll be coming back into Dallas from the Kimball in the afternoon and will have some time do park and do a little walking if we don't get rained out. We leave first thing in the moring, so we probably only have time to check out one area. Many thanks for all suggestions!

Mar 25, 2007
rosencav in Texas

houston 1 nite

I would like to thank everyone for all these wonderful suggestions. We definitely have some appealing options to work with, and I only wish we could stay several nights instead of one! I'm hoping I can ask you all for one more recommendation -- there's a small chance we won't be able to get to Houston until late that evening, possibly between 10 and 11. Most of the places listed above seem to close at 10, and I'm guessing that's the standard for the city. But if any of you know of any decent places to get a good late meal of any kind -- with a drink; by then we'll need one! -- I'd be grateful for one last round of information.

Mar 17, 2007
rosencav in Texas

houston 1 nite

We're visiting Houston (from Chicago) for just one night. Haven't been to Houston in about 7 years (I think we ate at Tony Ruppe's last time, which no longer exists, but which served us a pretty decent meal). We'll be staying near Montrose but will have a car. We're open to just about anything not-to-be-missed from hole-in-the wall Mex or Tex-Mex to fine dining. A couple of preferences:

If it's a hole in the wall, we'd prefer someplace that has a liquor license (byob is okay, but only if it's really really earthshatteringly amazing food).

if it's higher-end, we care most about the food, but we care about the room as well -- (sleek and minimal is good; we're kind of turned off by crystal chandeliers, fancy napkin folding and choreographed service); we'd prefer a $25-$35 or less entree range as opposed to a $40-$50 entree range); and if possible, we'd rather go someplace that has a regular menu as opposed to a tasting menu.

We're excited to try something new in Houston -- thank you very much in advance for any suggestions!

PS: If anyone out there knows Chicago, I can give you an idea of our general taste in restaurants:

Fine dining: Avec, Blackbird, NoMi, Custom House Schwa (yes, they are tasting-menu only, too, but the food is earthshatteringly amazing)
Casual: The Silver Palm, TAC Thai

Mar 13, 2007
rosencav in Texas

fine dining dilemma

Sorry about the triple post! Something very bad seems to have happened when I tried to edit my note about May Street Market. Anyway the one we *haven't* tried is the Cafe on Cermak, not the Market on Grand.

Feb 04, 2007
rosencav in Chicago Area

fine dining dilemma

Thanks so much for this list and for correctly understanding an important point that I managed to delete by mistake in my effort to edit. Our major criterion here after qualityof the food is that we'd prefer someplace none of us has tried. I should have added One Sixty Blue, Oceanique and MK to our list of already trieds. We sometimes use 160 to recruit new hires -- mostly we've had good experiences there, though we've also had a couple of ho hums. We only tried MK once and had a very bad experience, but that was probably 4 years ago at least, so it might qualify as a new restaurant for us at this point. If anyone wants to pitch recent performances I'll pay attention.

To prevent future suggestions I also should have added Aigre Doux, May Street Market (not Cafe), and Kevin to the list to the already trieds as well.

I should also mention that our friend is a serious wine guy. A BYOB might fit the bill here as well as any place that has a strong list of its own. If anyone is interested in adding more on the following -- and from very recent experience -- I'd be grateful for whatever thoughts you have:

May Street Market (the BYOB on Cermak, not the place on Grand and May)
Butter
Sweets and Savories
Everest
Avenues
DeLaCosta

(Alinea remains high in the running, but there's plenty of detailed press out there to consult already)

Feb 04, 2007
rosencav in Chicago Area

fine dining dilemma

A friend and fellow foodie is coming in from LA for dinner on a Saturday in April. He's been to NoMi, Naha, Trotter, Spring, Blackbird and Avec. We've been to all of the above plus Les Nomades, Tru, Moto, Follia, Green Zebra, Spring, Custom House, Topolobampo, and Schwa. Aside from Alinea (which is definitely an option), any must try suggestions?

Feb 03, 2007
rosencav in Chicago Area