The Ultimate Dallas Guide: The Best Things to Do in Dallas

written by Nida Dolani
The Ultimate Dallas Guide: The Best Things to Do in Dallas

Welcome to my Ultimate Dallas Guide!

My name is Nida Dolani – As someone who has lived in Dallas, Texas for pretty much my entire life, I’ve been to MANY great places in the DFW area and I’ve had A LOT of people ask me for recommendations on what restaurants to try, places to go, and things to do. So, I finally decided to create my own Ultimate Dallas Guide. I really hope it helps you experience all the wonderful things this city has to offer.

If you found this guide at all interesting, useful, or beneficial please go and follow my instagram @TheRealDish.Co where I give you the Real Dish on all my experiences, thanks! 🙂

Addison:

Vitruvian Park in Addison, TX

Hudson House – Some of the best oysters in town! The restaurant is small but cute and the food is very tasty!

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Type: American
Where: 4933 Belt Line Rd, Dallas, TX 75254
What to get: French Chicken and oysters
Menu: Hudson House

Taste of Chicago – The absolute best Chicago style deep dish Pizza

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Type: American
Where: 14833 Midway Rd Addison, TX 75001
What to get: deep dish pizza
Menu: Taste of Chicago

Magic Time Machine – Fun, themed restaurant where servers dress up in costumes

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Type: American
Where: 5003 Beltline Rd Dallas, TX 75254
What to get: Fiesta Chicken
Menu: Magic Time Machine 

Ida Claire – Quirky mixed with southern charm style restaurant with tasty cocktails

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Type: American
Where: 5001 Beltline Road Addison, TX 75254
What to get: Chicken & waffles Nashville Style and Peachy Keane Cocktail
Menu: Ida Claire 

Pete’s Piano Bar – Talented pianists with a high energy crowd, great place to celebrate events with your friends

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Type: Experience/Adventure
Where: 4980 Beltline Road Addison, TX 75254
What to get: 52oz signature drink – Lucky Duck
Menu: Pete’s Piano Bar

Astoria Caffe & Wine bar – Something to please everyone, a quaint corner location perfect for getting work done having meetings and/or meeting up friends to catch up

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Type: Coffee & Wine Bar
Where: 15701 Quorum Dr Addison, TX 75001
What to get: Tiramisu
Menu: Astoria Caffee & Wine Bar

Kobe Steaks – Upscale hibachi with entertaining chefs and the perfect place to celebrate special occasions

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Type: Japanese
Where: 5000 Beltline Rd Dallas, TX 75254
What to get: Filet Mignon & Shrimp with fried rice and their homemade hot sauce
Menu: Kobe Steaks

Gyu-Kaku – One of the best Korean/Japanese BBQ spots, perfect for a unique date night or group outing especially for meat lovers who want to eat healthy and not break the bank 

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Type: Japanese
Where: 5290 Beltline Rd Dallas, TX 75254
What to get: Meat lover’s combo, kalbi short rib, s’mores
Menu: Gyu-Kaku

Mercy Wine Bar – Classy, intimate wine bar, perfect for date night

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Type: Wine Bar
Where: 5100 Belt Line Rd Dallas, TX 75254
What to get: Red velvet cake and strawberry delight
Menu: Mercy Wine Bar

Plano:

Shops of Legacy in Plano, TX

Earls Kitchen – Upscale trendy restaurant with a lovely atmosphere and very nice patio, also a good spot to network and mingle with other young professionals

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Type: American
Where: 7401 Windrose Ave Plano, TX 75024
What to get: steak & sushi combo
Menu: Earls Kitchen

Hash House A Go Go – Creative menu, famous for their oversized food portions and unique presentation (featured on Man Vs Food)

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Type: American
Where: 1900 Preston Rd Plano TX 75093
What to get: Famous chicken and waffles
Menu: Hash House A Go Go

Urban Crust – Three stories with a rooftop patio serving the best pizza in downtown Plano

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Type: American
Where: 1006 E 15th Street Plano, TX 75074
What to get: Black & Blue Pizza and the dipping red sauce
Menu: Urban Crust

Pinstack – Arcade made for adults complete with a bowling alley, laser tag, rock climbing, bumper cars and a delicious menu with a great drink selection

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Type: Experience/Adventure
Where: 6205 Dallas Parkway Plano, TX 75024
What to get: Pizza
Menu: Pinstack

Union Bear Brewing Co – Brewery and restaurant concept with chef-driver plates and extensive bar

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Type: American
Where: 5880 State Highway 121 Plano, TX 75024
What to get: Buttermilk fried chicken sandwich
Menu: Union Bear Brewing Co

Legacy Hall – Beautifully designed and aesthetically pleasing with 3 floors, spacious food hall with 20 casual dining/dessert options and live music outside on the patio

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Type: Lots to pick from
Where: 7800 Windrose Ave Plano, TX 75024
What to get: Burger from Knife
Menu: Legacy Hall

Hookline – Chic yet casual spot for Cajun seafood entrees with amazing view of the boardwalk

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Type: American
Where: 5872 TX 121 Plano, TX 75024
What to get: Crab cakes, Cojito, hot chicken sandwich
Menu: Hookline

Haywire – Contemporary style with a beautiful rooftop patio offering an extensive menu of chef inspired food

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Type: American
Where: 5901 Winthrop St Plano, TX 75024
What to get: Fried green tomatoes and grilled chipotle meatloaf
Menu: Haywire

Hyenas Comedy Club Plano – Intimate feel, watch hilarious local comedians and sometimes national comedians perform

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Type: Comedy Club
Where: 1941 Preston Rd. Ste Plano, TX 75093
What to get: French fries
Menu: Hyenas Comedy Club

North Italia – Modern, open concept eatery making homemade pasta with beautiful outdoor patio that overlooks a dancing water fountain

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Type: Italian
Where: 7501 Windrose Ave Suite D190, Plano, TX 75024
What to get: Bacon & egg pizza, and chicken pesto
Menu: North Italia

Fourteen Eighteen Coffeehouse – The epitome of a neighborhood coffee shop, friendly service and super cute patio

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Type: Coffee House
Where: 1418 K Ave Plano, TX 75074
What to get: Purple haze latte
Menu: 1418 Coffee House

North Dallas:

Pearl Cup Coffee in Richardson, TX

The Pearl Cup – Local coffee house with beautiful patio seating, and the perfect place to relax with a cup of joe

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Type: Coffee House
Where: 2701 Custer Pkwy Richardson, TX 75080
What to get: Pearl or Lavender Latte
Menu: The Pearl Cup

Roman Cucina – My absolute favorite Italian restaurant (and in my opinion the best Italian restaurant) in Dallas, truly a hidden gem

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Type: Italian
Where: 7989 Belt Line Rd Dallas, TX 75248
What to get: eggplant parmigiana and Yelp special
Menu: Roman Cucina

Maple Leaf Dinner – Bringing a taste of Canadian entrees to the US offering picture worthy, oversized portion food

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Type: Canadian
Where: 12817 Preston Rd Dallas, TX 75230
What to get: Chicken bacon waffles
Menu: Maple Leaf Dinner

Uptown:

The Rustic in Dallas, TX

The Rustic – Huge music venue with beautiful patio and live music 

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Type: American
Where: 3656 Howell St Dallas, TX 75204
What to get: The Rustic Burger
Menu: The Rustic

Uchi – Modern sushi bar with a romantic and intimate vibe with a unique fusion sushi selection

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Type: Asian
Where: 2817 Maple Ave Dallas, TX 75201
What to get: Brussels sprouts, hama chili, ebi
Menu: Uchi

Tacos & Tequila – Contemporary taco bar with great rooftop patio

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Type: Mexican
Where: 2800 Routh St #155, Dallas, TX 75201
What to get: Hatch Steak Relleno, baja shrimp
Menu: Tacos & Tequila

Javier’s – Gourmet Mexican cuisine with a cigar bar inside the restaurant

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Type: Mexican
Where: 4912 Cole Ave, Dallas, TX 75205
What to get: Filetes Cantinflas
Menu: Javier’s 

Buzz Brews – One the best brunch spots with amazing coffee that is open 24 hours a day

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Type: American
Where: 4334 Lemmon Avenue Dallas, TX 75219
What to get: Bluto Crepes and Bananas Fosters coffee
Menu: Buzz Brews

Fearing’s – Upscale steakhouse located at the Ritz-Carlton that is stunningly decorated, dimly-lit, with a romantic vibe

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Type: American
Where: 2121 Mckinney Ave Dallas, TX 75201
What to get: Fried green tomatoes and maple/black peppercorn buffalo tenderloin
Menu: Fearing’s

Nobu – Upscale fusion cuisine blending traditional Japanese dishes with Peruvian ingredients with an eccentric atmosphere

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Type: Japanese
Where: 400 Crescent Ct Dallas, TX 75201
What to get: Chef’s exclusive tasting
Menu: Nobu

Downtown:

Downtown Dallas Skyline

The Henry – Newest hot spots in Dallas, and because it is so new make sure you make reservations to avoid the long wait time, but trust me the food is worth it!

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Type: Restaurant/Bar
Where: 2301 Akard Street Dallas, TX 75201
What to get: Green Chile Chicken Enchiladas and Bread Pudding
Menu: The Henry

Happiest Hour – One the Dallas hot spots for night life. Has a large patio bar with rooftop deck that offers a great view of the city

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Type: Bar
Where: 2616 Oliver St Dallas, TX 75201
What to get: Froze or beeriest wheelers
Menu: Happiest Hour

Dallas World Aquarium – Beautiful aquarium and zoo with an amazing recreation of rainforest

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Type: Experience/Adventure
Where: 1801 N Griffin St, Dallas, TX 75202
What to get: Buy tickets at the door for $20
Menu: 3 restaurants located inside –Dallas World Aquarium
-Eighteen-O-One
-Café Maya
-Jungle Café

Magnolias Sous Le Pont – Charming yet quaint Euro-style cafe with great expresso drinks and a beautiful outdoor patio 

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Type: Coffee House
Where: 2727 Harwood St Dallas, TX 75201
What to get: Lavender Latte
Menu: Magnolias Sous Le Pont

Dallas Central Market – Large public market with a ton of vendors

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Type: open public market
Where: 920 S Harwood St, Dallas, TX 75201
What to get: check out local vendors
Menu: Dallas Central Market

Reunion Tower – City’s most recognizable landmark, with a 360-degree view of the city as the room revolves, perfect for date night and if you want to impress that special someone

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Type: contemporary Asian fusion
Where: 300 Reunion Boulevard Dallas, Texas, USA, 75207
What to get: Shrimp & Lobster eggrolls, Calamari & Wagyu Brisket Bao Buns
Menu: Reunion Tower

The Hospitality Sweet – Most adorable coffee shop located in US Post Office building, known for all of their sweet treats

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Type: Coffee House/ Cafe
Where: 400 N Ervay Ste 175 Dallas, TX 75201
What to get: macaroons, cake pops, turkey avocado sandwich
Menu: The Hospitality Sweet

Carrollton:

Spa Castle in Carrollton, TX

Spa Castle – Relaxing place to hangout with friends, and make sure to bring a bathing suit. They have traditional bath houses located in the locker room (nudity only – no clothing permitted) in that area.

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Type: Experience/Adventure
Where: 1020 Raiford Rd Carrollton, TX 75007
What to get: Buy the Groupon for $25 admission
Menu: Spa Castle

Al Markaz – The #1 well-known Indian restaurant for the best Indian cuisine

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Type: Indian
Where: 1205 W Trinity Mills Rd Carrollton, TX 75006
What to get: Frontier chicken and Samosas
Menu: Al Markaz

T-swirl Crepe – Offers both sweet and savory type crepes with a variety of options to pick from while you wait and watch them make it

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Type: American
Where: 2540 Old Denton Rd Carrollton, TX 75006
What to get: Matcha chocolate truffle
Menu: T-swirl crepe

85°C Bakery Cafe  – Cafeteria-style Asian bakery that offers lots of tasty treats 

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Type: Dessert
Where: 2540 Old Denton Rd Carrollton, TX 75006
What to get: Rose milk tea, and mango everything
Menu: 85°C Bakery Cafe

Grand Prairie: 

Ripley’s Believe it or Not in Grand Prairie, TX

Ripley’s Believe it or Not! – Museum full of unique exhibits and fascinating wax figures that you definitely want to take pictures with and make sure to carve out at least 2 hours to go through it all

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Type: Experience/Adventure
Where: 601 E Palace Parkway Grand Prairie, TX 75050
What to get: Buy the Groupon for $12.50 admission
Website: Ripleys Believe it or Not!

Dallas:

Arboretum & Botanical Gardens in Dallas, TX

Jalisco Norte – looking for a super trendy spot in Dallas? This is one you have to check out. There are two sides of the restaurant separated by a huge bar in the middle.

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Type: Mexican
Where: 3858 Oak Lawn Ave Dallas, TX 75219
What to get: Heat cocktail
Menu: Jalisco Norte

Dallas Arboretum & Botanical Gardens – 66 acre garden near White Rock Lake, so many picture worthy spots and a fantastic place to relax or have a picnic

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Type: Experience/Adventure
Where: 8525 Garland Rd Dallas, TX 75218
What to get: Buy tickets online for $15 per person
Menu: Dallas Arboretum & Botanical Gardens

Murder Mystery Dinner – Interactive murder mystery dinner and show where all attendees are asked to participate in the act to help solve the crime

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Type: Experience/Adventure
Where: 1724 Cockrell Ave Dallas, TX 75215
What to get: Buy the VIP ticket (this allows you to sit up close to the stage and you get a souvenir picture to take home)
Menu: Murder Mystery Dinner

Delta Charlies – Extremely romantic date idea that consists of a three course dinner and a flight touring the downtown Dallas skyline

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Type: Experience/Adventure
Where: 5303 Challenger Dr. Dallas TX 75237
What to get: Buy the Groupon to get the best pricing
Menu: 3 course dinner -Delta Charlies

Lower Greenville:

Truck Yard in Dallas, TX

Smithy – Trendy yet casual spot with delicious food! Make sure you make reservations, they are always really busy

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Type: American
Where: 2927 N Henderson Avenue Dallas, TX 75206
What to get:  Crab Nachos, Flat Iron Steak, Luke’s hot chicken, truffle fries
Menu: Smithy

Truck Yard – Adult playground with a beer garden, food trucks, treehouse and live music

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Type: American
Where: 5626 Sears St. Dallas, TX 75206
What to get: cheesesteaks
Menu: Truck Yard

Velvet Taco – Creative and tasty taco selections that are to die for

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Type: American
Where: 3012 N Henderson Ave Dallas, TX 75206
What to get: Spicy Chicken Tikka Taco
Menu: Velvet Taco

HG Sply Co – Simple, clean food, with two floors, and a super huge rooftop patio

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Type: American
Where: 2008 Greenville Ave Dallas, TX 75206
What to get: Brussel sprouts, nachos, kettle ball dessert is a must-try
Menu: HG Supply Co

Fort Worth:

Trinity River in Fort Worth, TX

Press Cafe – American cuisine & craft cocktails in a chill setting featuring trail views & an outdoor patio 

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Type: American
Where: 4801 Edwards Ranch Rd #105, Fort Worth, TX 76109
What to get: caramelized Brussel sprouts, café burger (award winning)
Menu: Press Cafe

Kona Grill – Unique sushi fusion restaurant with an incredible reverse happy hour menu which includes drinks and food items

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Type: Asian
Where: 3028 Crockett St Fort Worth, TX 76107
What to get: Calamari with spicy mayo, diablo shrimp, shrimp & lobster roll, any of the flatbreads
Menu: Kona Grill

Bar Taco Westbend – Healthy, fresh food with a coastal vibe in a relaxed environment and the view from the patio overlooks the Trinity River

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Type: American
Where: 1701 River Run Fort Worth, TX 76107
What to get: chicken pastor, seared redfish, baja fish, guac, spicy margarita
Menu: Bar Taco

Buon Giorno – Intimate coffeeshop with a vast selection of flavored European espresso drinks 

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Type: Coffee House
Where: 915 Florence St Fort Worth, TX 76210
What to get: blueberry cobbler latte
Menu: Buon Giorno

Grapevine:

Mi Dia from Scratch in Grapevine, TX

Mi Dia from Scratch – True fusion experience where they blend traditional Mexican recipes with modern santa fe and tex mex flavors 

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Type: Mexican
Where: 1295 S Main Street Grapevine, TX 76051
What to get: Pollo Agave
Menu: Mi Dia from Scratch

Redefined – Gourmet coffee, super cozy ambience, great place to relax or catch up with friends

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Type: Coffee House
Where: 220 N Main St, Grapevine, TX 76051
What to get: chocolate chip cookie (trust me you want to try it)
Menu: Redefined

Winewood – Trendy upscale restaurant for dinner or brunch known for their large selection of wines 

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Type: Wine Bar
Where: 1265 S Main St Grapevine, TX 76051
What to get: lump crab cakes, brookie, chicken & waffles
Menu: Winewood

Denton:

The Square in Denton, TX

Yogurt Bliss – Think of the the most instagrammable ice cream shake, this is that place

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Type: Dessert
Where: 5017 Teasley Lane Denton, TX 76210
What to get: Campfire muggle
Menu: Yogurt Bliss FB page

Barley & Board – Trendy yet hipster college-town restaurant known for their variety of small plate options and large selection of craft beers and cocktails

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Type: American
Where: 100 West Oak St Denton, TX 76201
What to get: mother board
Menu: Barley & Board

Milpa Kitchen – The menu offers 100 different margaritas, do you need another reason?

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Type: Mexican
Where: 820 S Interstate 35 E Denton, TX 76205
What to get: Margarita
Menu: Milpa Kitchen 

Oak Cliff:

Bolsa in Dallas, TX

Bolsa –Fun, unique atmosphere with a cozy covered patio, the restaurant offers fresh food from local farms offering the farm to table experience

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Type: American
Where: 614 W Davis street Dallas, TX 75208
What to get: fig & honey flatbread, house burger
Menu: Bolsa

Jonathons – best brunch spot in Dallas, extremely busy on the weekend but totally worth the wait

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Type: American
Where: 1111 N Beckley Ave Dallas, TX 75203
What to get: All in one waffle
Menu: Jonathons

Local Press + Brew – Fresh juice and coffee bar in Dallas that supports local vendors, the restaurant has a walk up window if you’re in a hurry

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Type: American
Where: 1605 N Beckley Ave Dallas, TX 75203
What to get: avocado toast, fresh made almond milk, and Kessler Park juice
Menu: Local Press & Brew

The Colony:

Lava Cantina in The Colony, TX

Lava Cantina – Two story music venue with live performances, a restaurant inside and an amazing view that overlooks the lake

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Type: Adventure/Experience
Where: 5805 Grandscape Blvd The Colony, TX 75056
What to get: Brisket Quesadilla
Menu: Lava Cantina

Hard 8 BBQ – Delicious high-quality smoke house serving a variety of different meats and they have the best BBQ sauce

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Type: American
Where: 5300 TX-121, The Colony, TX 75056
What to get: bacon wrapped shrimp with jalapeños, brisket and fried okra
Menu: Hard 8 BBQ

Frisco:

The Star in Frisco

Da Mario– Authentic Italian dining experience with table side pasta using a cheese wheel -really cool spot to check out 

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Type: Italian
Where: 6655 Winning Drive Frisco, TX 75034
What to get: table side signature fettuccine and tiramisu
Menu: Da Mario 

Summer Moon Coffee – Quaint little coffee shop located in downtown Frisco known for their milk moon and they offer four different options to select your perfect sweet spot. 

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Type: Coffee
Where: 6943 W. Main Street Frisco, TX 75034
What to get:  summer moon coffee and blueberry bread slice
Menu:  Summer Moon Coffee

Eddie’s Napoli’s Italian Restaurant – Freshly made Italian food with live music on the weekends 

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Type: Italian
Where: 8822 Teel Pkwy, Frisco, TX 75034
What to get: Chicken Murphy
Menu: Eddie’s Napoli’s 

Eight 11 – One of the best local gems located in downtown Frisco that is a super cozy wine bar with an amazing patio where you can roast s’mores and listen to live music

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Type: American
Where: 7080 Main St, Frisco, TX 75033
What to get: S’ mores board
Menu: Eight 11

Pizzeria Testa – Authentic Neapolitan pizza, great spot for a romantic date night, and fresh homemade tiramisu you must try

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Type: Italian
Where: 8660 Church St Frisco, TX 75034
What to get: tiramisu and salsiccia pizza
Menu: Pizzeria Testa

Deep Ellum:

Deep Ellum in Dallas, TX

Pecan Lodge – The best spot for BBQ, make sure to get there early since most time the wait can be up to two hours

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Type: American
Where: 702 Main St, Dallas, TX 75226
What to get: The Hot Mess, and The Pitmaster
Menu: Pecan Lodge

Cane Rosso – Great Italian restaurant known for their freshly made wood-burning oven Neapolitan pizzas 

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Type: Italian
Where: 2612 Commerce St Dallas, TX 75226
What to get: OMB pizza
Menu: Cane Rosso

Glazed Donuts – Unique donut shop with a variety of tasty treats to satisfy your sweet tooth

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Type: Dessert
Where: 2644 Elm Street Dallas, TX 75226
What to get: Mini Creme Brulee and red velvet
Menu: Glazed Donuts 

Trinity Groves:

Trinity Groves in Dallas, TX

Beto & Son – Contemporary tex-mex restaurant that is known for their creative take on fresh made margs with liquid nitrogen

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Type: Mexican
Where: 3011 Gulden Lane Dallas, TX 75212
What to get: Liquid Nitrogen Margarita and Tableside Guacamology
Menu: Beto & Son

Steam Theory Brewing – Casual restaurant and brewery that serves fresh beer brewed on the premises

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Type: American
Where: 340 Singleton Blvd Dallas, TX 75212
What to get: Flight of beer
Menu: Steam Theory Brewing

Cake Bar – Calling all cake lovers, this place offer 16 different options for made from scratch cakes, made fresh daily

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Type: Dessert
Where: 3011 Gulden Ln Dallas, TX 75212
What to get: strawberry cake
Menu: Cake Bar

Fairview:

iPic Movie Theater in Fairview, TX

iPic Movie Theater – Premium movie theater with recliner style loungers that include a mini pillow and fleece blanket

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Type: Movie Theater
Where: 321 Town Pl Fairview, TX 75069
What to get: BBQ chicken flatbread
Menu: iPic 

My favorite Dallas Instagram accounts to follow to learn more about things to do in Dallas

@TheRealDish.co

@brandondoesdallas

@dallasdevs

@just.dallas.things

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