How Dallas is becoming America’s dining hotspot

Texas' largest metropolis is experiencing dizzying growth, and its dining scene stands as one of the most flourishing in the country, boosted by the arrival of several upscale restaurant groups from the United States.
Cómo Dallas se está convirtiendo en el 'hotspot' gastronómico de Estados Unidos

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Vibrant and full of surprises, the city of Dallas (Texas) is one of the most attractive in the United States, especially since it has become the country’s most flourishing gastronomic scene, boosted by the arrival of several upscale national restaurant groups.

As happened a few years ago with Las Vegas and Miami, this destination is now attracting the attention of the most important restaurant companies, which are breathing new life into the culinary culture of the city where John F. Kennedy spent his last hours.

Major Food Group, STK, Blau + Associates, RH, Komodo, Maple Hospitality Group, La Neta Cocina y Lounge and even Nusr-Et, the Salt Bae steakhouse, have already rolled out their spaces in Texas’ largest metropolis, and rumors claim that names like Joe’s Stone Crab of Miami, Ralph Lauren’s Polo Bar and Pastis are coming soon.

“Every group you can think of, from Los Angeles to New York City to international groups, seems to want to be in Dallas,” Stephen Summers, whose family owns Highland Park Village – an upscale outdoor mall – told The New York Times.

New culinary capital

One of the reasons for the irremediable attraction to Dallas is its dizzying growth: according to census data, from April 2020 to July 2021, the Dallas-Fort Worth area increased its population by some 122,000 new residents – the pandemic caused many citizens to move there in search of a warmer climate and more flexible restrictions. And some predict that, in a few years, it could replace Chicago as the third largest metropolitan area in the United States.

In addition, rents are cheaper and ingredients cost less than in many other major cities, as Matt Winn, partner and chief development officer at Maple Hospitality Group, told The New York Times. This group has two restaurants in The National, an impressive luxury high-rise in Dallas: Monarch, a modern Italian restaurant where they serve a nearly $1,000 king crab; and Kessaku, a luxury cocktail and sushi lounge that sits just upstairs.

Incipient flavors

In the Mexican restaurant La Neta Cocina y Lounge, originally from Las Vegas, they also bet on creative and sumptuous recipes, such as the Lobsta, which they prepare “with Maine lobster with butter, toasted corn puree, fennel and citrus salad, in a cheese-stuffed tortilla with a unique presentation that attracts attention”.

Three other new additions that have caused much excitement are Major Food Group’s openings: the sophisticated and iconic Sadelle’s; the Italian restaurant Carbone, which pays homage to the essence of the great Italian-American restaurants of mid-20th century New York with dishes such as linguini vongole, lobster Fra Diavolo, chicken Scarpariello or veal parmesan; and Carbone Vino, “a new concept that celebrates timeless craftsmanship and Italy’s most coveted wines.”

The emergence of all these upscale restaurants, which has led some to christen Dallas as the new Dubai, adds to the city’s exciting local dining scene, with such established establishments as Petra and the Beast and Roots Southern Table -several publications have included them in their lists of the best in the country- or Nick & Sam’s steakhouse.

It is also preparing for such desirable arrivals as Catch, an upscale steak and seafood restaurant, and Maple & Ash, from Maple Hospitality Group. Dallas’ ascent to the gastronomic Olympus is already unstoppable.