Explore East Dallas’s culinary jewels as we present the best restaurants we know, each of which is a culinary gem that adds to the area’s thriving eating scene. Our well-curated guide helps you traverse the many flavors that make up East Dallas’ distinctive culinary tapestry, from quaint cafes to premium venues. Come along as we uncover local treasures and well-known spots that highlight the neighborhood’s dedication to creative and superior cuisine. Our guide promises a symphony of sensations, reflecting the essence of city’s booming culinary culture, whether you’re a visitor eager to experience the neighborhood’s wide palate or a local looking for new favorites. Prepare yourself for incredible culinary adventures as we explore the neighborhoods and find the best restaurants in East Dallas, where each bite reveals a unique tale.
Owned by the famous female duo from the music group Tripping Daisy, Lounge Here is a stunning modern Southern Comfort restaurant and cocktail lounge. Located inside a creative mid-century modern space overlooking the Dallas Arboretum and Botanical Gardens, Lounge Here is a hip and inviting atmosphere for the adult crowd. The extensive wine, beer, and cocktail program make Lounge Here a popular Happy Hour spot, but the fancy décor and luxurious menu convince you to stay for dinner. In true Southern fashion, I recommend starting with the pimento cheese with crispy tasso ham, house potato chips, and veggies.
Located in Lochwood, Goodfriend Beer Garden and Burger House is a friendly neighborhood watering hole, offering an extensive list of beers and whiskey along with over-the-top burgers and sandwiches. Owned by Matt Tobin and Josh Yingling, Goodfriend has been a favorite hangout spot for friends and families for over a decade. Their giant outdoor patio is dog-friendly, and their massive tap list features 27 beers plus another 30 or more cans and bottles. Their signature sandwich, the crunch wrap, is a mix between a burger and a burrito with a hamburger patty topped with American cheese, tomato, sour cream, queso, and cool ranch Doritos all wrapped in a giant flour tortilla.
Angry Dog is a Deep Ellum classic for cold beers and American fare in old-school no-frills digs. With over 30 years in Deep Ellum, Angry Dog has won countless critics and readers’ choice awards for best wings, dogs, hamburgers, and nachos from both D Magazine and the Dallas Observer. They have 30 beers on tap, twice as many cans and bottles, and a creative cocktail menu to pair with an award-winning plate of wings. I took the critics’ choice and ordered the Angry Dog hot dog, an67 all-beef Kosher frank piled high with mustard, chili, grilled red onions, cheddar, and a pickle spear.
Originating in Orlando in 2011. Hawkers Asian Street Food is the creation of four close friends from families of different Asian cultural backgrounds who decided to pool their diverse knowledge of street food cultures. The result is a wildly popular cocktail bar and street food eatery in a hip and lively atmosphere with multiple locations across the south, including East Dallas’ Deep Ellum. The menu draws from street food culture in China, Malaysia, Korea, and Vietnam with a vibrant menu of tropical Asian-inspired cocktails. I loved the crisp pork belly Siu Yoke with hoisin dipping sauce. Their Korean twice-fried wings in a garlic gochujang topped with peanuts, sesame, and cilantro was a flavor and texture explosion.
Located across the interstate from Julius Schepps Park, Big Guys Chicken & Rice is a fast-casual counter-service Mediterranean restaurant serving Middle Eastern food. They offer a quick to-go service but also have a modest dining space for dining in. Their food is affordable, flavorful, and great for meat-eaters and vegetarians alike. They have a straightforward menu of rice platters, pita wraps, and salads. Their falafels are crispy and light, making a great salad topper. For a more robust meal, I recommend the Gyro rice platter with a lamb and beef gyro meat that’s been slow-roasted and thinly sliced.
Voted as one of the top 100 restaurants in Dallas by the Dallas Observer and winner of multiple diners choice awards, Niwa Japanese BBQ is a modern and authentic yakiniku experience. Located in Deep Ellum, Niwa is a theatrical and interactive dining experience where customers cook cuts of high-quality meats in smokeless pits at the center of each table. They have a great list of sake, cocktails, wine, and Japanese beer to accompany a beautifully presented meal of appetizers, dishes, and DIY barbecued meats, fish, and veggies. I started with the soy-ginger braised pork belly with pickled mustard greens, a soft yolk ajitama egg, and scallions. My favorite cut of meat to throw on the grill was the Japanese Wagy NY strip.
Uncle Uber’s Sammich Shop is a mix between an old-school NY deli and a hole-in-the-wall sports bar. Located in a divey dining room and bar with exposed brick walls lined with flat-screen TVs in Deep Ellum, Uncle Uber’s offers a wealth of sandwiches both hot and cold for meat lovers and vegans alike. They have a rotation of 8 beers on tap from local and imported breweries. Their menu includes salads, soups, burgers, snacks, and amazing sandwiches. Whether you want a Cuban sandwich or banh mi, Uncle Uber’s makes the best in town. I loved the slow-roasted pork sandwich with homemade coleslaw on a toasted bun.
Owned by Chefs Jason Boso and Quincy Hart, who went to culinary school together then worked as line chefs at prominent Dallas restaurants, Twisted Root Burger Co is their longstanding dream come true. Located in Deep Ellum, Twisted Root Burger has been a Dallas favorite for over a decade, featured on Guy Fieri’s Diners Drive-ins and Dives. All buns are sourced from local bakeries, and all toppings, sauces, and pickles are scratches made daily. Plus, each burger is a whopping half-pound, so come hungry. I had to try their most decadent offering called The Millionaire, an open-faced knife and fork wagyu beef burger with bacon, truffle aioli, garlic mushrooms, aged cheddar, crispy tobacco onions, and dark beer sauce.
I saved the best for last with Loro, an Asian fusion smokehouse and bar from two Texas famous, James Beard Award-winning Chefs. Located in Ryan Place, a block from Walford Park, Loro’s owner Tyson Cole won a James Beard for Japanese food while owner Aaron Franklin won a James Beard for barbecue. The collaboration of master culinary minds is a match made in food heaven for customers. I don’t even know where to start on this insane Asian barbecue menu. You must come here at least half a dozen times to sample everything. I was lucky enough to come on a Sunday; the one day they offer smoked baby back Duroc pork ribs served with cauliflower pickles and green onion.
Why Trust Us?
When it comes to local restaurant recommendations, we pride ourselves on being a reliable and trustworthy resource. Our suggestions are not just based on our personal experiences, ensuring a more authentic and well-rounded perspective, but also on extensive online research. We diligently searched the internet and reviewed 6 credible sites and blogs, including Dallas.eater.com and Thegaston.com.
We compiled all the findings in one location and sorted them by the frequency of mentions to ensure you receive top-notch recommendations. We strive to present you with a curated list of establishments that truly stand out, allowing you to enjoy the best dining experiences possible.
Interested in the sources we consulted? Check out the list of all 6 sites we referenced below this paragraph, offering transparency and an opportunity for our readers to explore further. Our commitment is to deliver trustworthy and unparalleled recommendations, helping you make informed decisions on your culinary journeys.