After surviving the Pearl Harbor attack on the USS Arizona while on the ship's bottom deck, Gordon Howard found a new calling on returning home healthy from World War II. In 1952, he and his wife opened the doors to Gordo's, a bistro serving hearty plates of Italian and American cuisine, where Howard and the subsequent owners have warmed guests with mouthwatering fare for the past 59 years. Due to the establishment's remarkable history and fine dining, the state of Texas officially recognizes it as a Treasured Dallas Institution, a title that chefs back up with platefuls of veal picatta or juicy chicken-fried steak.
The interior—split between a vast dining room and a wood-paneled bar and lounge—easily hosts large groups and NFL nights during football season with a buffet and games broadcast on six large screens. The venue also serves up a weekly Sunday brunch buffet, into which patrons frequently toss forks and futilely listen for them to hit the bottom.: