Oak Cliff's Restaurant Beatrice is a new spot for Cajun cuisine. (Photo by Madison Mask)
Enoteca Italia makes an amazing seafood linguine. (Courtesy)
The steak frites are a must-try at Toussaint Brasserie. (Photo by Kathy Tran)
The Calabrian Chili Ravioli is a must-try at Sister Restaurant. (Photo by Manny Rodriguez)
The Sweet Potato Pakoras are a must-try appetizer at District Dallas. (Photo by Kathy Tran)
Clifton Club, a neighborhood bar, just opened on Fitzhugh with great cocktails. (Photo by Megan Ziots)
Sfuzzi will feature the signature Original Frozen Sfuzzi cocktail. (Photo by Kathy Tran)
The Martini Italiano is a must-try gin cocktail at Enoteca Italia. (Courtesy)
The Mujeres Divinis is a delicious hibiscus margarita at The Mexican. (Courtesy)
The Gold Fashioned is a must-try at Magnum Room.
2022 has already been a huge year for new restaurant openings in Dallas. (And we thought last year was crazy.) From glitzy New York imports to hole-in-the-wall gems that seemingly came out of nowhere (always a pleasant surprise), there have been a lot of great things to eat and sip.
These are our five favorite dishes and cocktails we’ve tried from new Dallas restaurants so far this year.
The Most Memorable Dishes at New Dallas Restaurants in 2022 (So Far…)
Mammaw’s Fried Chicken at Restaurant Beatrice
Recently opened in a craftsman house in Bishop Arts, this new contemporary Cajun restaurant comes from chef Michelle Carpenter (Zen Sushi). The kitchen is led by New Orleans-native chef Terance Jenkins (who has worked at the iconic Commander’s Place in New Orleans). And the Mammaw’s Fried Chicken with pepper jelly and house pickles is incredible. It’s crunchy, warm, and has a kick of spice with the jelly. I can’t stop thinking about it.
Seafood Linguine at Enoteca Italia
Earlier this year, I had a chance to check out this new Italian spot in Oak Lawn. The first solo venture for chef Alban Besiri (formerly of Chicago’s Davanti Enoteca), the new family-friendly concept offers a menu of authentic Italian dishes like focaccia, meatballs, and pizzas. But it was the seafood linguine with squid ink pasta, shrimp, octopus, and calamari slathered in a rich shellfish broth, wine, and tomato sauce that really stood out to me.
Steak Frites at Toussaint Brasserie
This new French brasserie in downtown Dallas’ Renaissance Saint Elm Hotel has an interesting menu of classic Parisian dishes like French onion soup and Vietnamese bites such as bibimbap. The one dish that I still think about is the prime strip steak frites. It’s a 12-ounce wagyu strip with garlic butter, salsa persillade, and truffle fries on the side.
Calabrian Chili Ravioli at Sister
In Lower Greenville, this new Italian-ish restaurant from Duro Hospitality has many stand-out dishes on its menu, but my favorite had to be the Calabrian Chili Ravioli. Filled with broccoli ricotta, this pasta dish has a perfectly petite kick of spice with the chili that doesn’t overpower any great flavors within the dish.
Sweet Potato Pakoras at District
The most surprising dish that I remembered loving from this year so far is the sweet potato pakoras at District Dallas. The crunchy, fried zucchini bites — made with chickpea batter — are cooked up by chef Aaron Staudenmaier (formerly of Jasper’s Uptown) and are served with a jalapeño-lime dipping cream that we couldn’t get enough of.
5 Favorite Cocktails
Oaxacan Affair at Clifton Club
This new neighborhood bar from Beverley’s owner Greg Katz is concocting some killer cocktails in the remodeled former Zippers space on Fitzhugh Avenue. I immediately opt for anything mezcal these days and the Oaxacan Affair did not disappoint. It includes tequila, mezcal, watermelon, agave, lime, and black lava salt. It’s one of the most popular at the bar since opening for a reason.
Martini Italiano at Enoteca Italia
I’ve never been a martini drinker, but this Italian version at Enoteca Italia may have converted me — at least to the Italian gin martini. Made with Zephyr Black gin, lillet, Italicus, and black lemon bitters, it’s a slightly sweeter, more balanced take on the classic drink.
The Original Frozen Sfuzzi at Sfuzzi
A classic is a classic for a reason and thankfully this neighborhood pizza restaurant brought back its iconic frozen cocktail when it reopened on Henderson Avenue this year. The Original Frozen Sfuzzi — an icy peach Bellini — is the spot’s signature drink, and absolutely delicious. (Fair warning though, the mixture also includes vodka.)
Mujeres Divinis at The Mexican
Bringing authentic, upscale Northern Mexican food to the Design District, this new spot from Monterrey-native Roberto Gonzalez Alcalá makes some great cocktails as well. One of our favorites so far this year is the Mujeres Divinis — a mixture of hibiscus-infused mi campo blanco tequila, chartreuse, and cucumber. It’s lovely to look at and refreshing.
Gold Fashioned at Magnum Room (Hotel Vin)
Mezcal, tequila, vodka, and gin are the four liquors I usually lean toward when ordering a cocktail. But there is one bourbon-based drink that made the cut for this non-bourbon drinker — Magnum Room‘s Gold Fashioned. It’s made with Maker’s Mark Cask Strength Bourbon, Liquor 43, Angostura Cocoa Bitters, and gold. It’s also served with a chocolate gold coin, which to me, makes it perfect.