Rich, yellow threads of saffron melt into the stews and kebab marinades simmering in the kitchen of Shandeez Grill Restaurant. Family plates cover tables with a variety of Persian-style kebabs to share or play pickup sticks with, and Greek recipes entertain diners with flavorful gyro wraps and cool tzatziki sauce. On select nights, live music mixes with the scent of seared meat on the grill and sweet hookah smoke snaking through the dining room.
The chefs at Kerbey Lane Cafe have spent decades combining locally sourced ingredients to craft a menu brimming with eclectic breakfast fare, Mexican-tinged entrees, and rotating seasonal dishes served all day long. Batter craftsmen flip stacks of Kerbey Lane's signature homemade pancakes ($2.99–$5.39), dressed up in a full wardrobe of adventurous flavors including gingerbread, apple whole wheat, vegan, and crushed velvet. The SoLa enchiladas pack tortillas with portobello mushrooms, spinach, and cheddar-jack cheese under a downpour of your choice of sauce ($7.99). Groups can scoop through an appetizer of the Kerbey queso ($8.09)—guacamole blanketed with queso and pico de gallo and served with tortilla chips for dipping and flinging at open-mouthed dinner dates.
An Englishman walks into a Texas BBQ. That sounds like the setup of a corny joke. But when twang-free British meat lover Jason Dennis took the reins of the former Chisholm Trail Icehouse & BBQ, added new recipes to its established menu, and reincarnated it as the new BBQ 512, there was no punchline. Just lines of barbecue fanatics drawn in by the the wavering aromas emanating from Jason's meat smoker. To boast the ?best ?que in the 512" is a mighty big boast in any Texas area code, but Jason and his gregarious staff put their money where your mouth is when it comes to their generously-portioned meats and sides. Plates and sandwiches come packed with your choice of brisket, pork loin, turkey, pork ribs, and sausage, and savory sides such as squash, potato salad, and mac and cheese make up for the fact that pork doesn't grow in gardens. Much more than a meat shack, BBQ 512 also sports a homey sports bar with brew specials for big-game watching, and caters to events such as weddings, tailgates, and gatherings of relapsed former competitive eaters.
The Whole Bite's health-conscious cooks draw upon fitness training to fill plates with nutritious, ready-made meals prepared with natural ingredients. The menu eschews artificial sweeteners, high-fructose corn syrup, and peer-pressuring sugar-plum fairies to present satisfying dishes such as lime- and cilantro-laced chicken on a bed of garlic brown rice ($6.75–$8). Seasoned and seared lean pork tenderloin ($7.50–$8) rides on the shoulders of a crowd of organic sweet potatoes, and spicy buffalo-beef chili with quinoa ($7.75–$9.25) delivers slow-cooked flavors to busy diners preoccupied with long work days, errands, and modern-art projects occupying all of their kitchen's pots and pans.
Silver Grill Cafe is a rustic refuge for savory Tex-Mex fare, succoring the famished masses with hearty dinner plates and breakfasts served all day. Elephantine though devoid of elephants, the menu touts golden-fried appetizers, meat-replete barbecue, and russian nesting burgers in sizes for all appetites. Pioneer your meal with a border-blurring appetizer of barbecue nachos, then settle down on a customizable three-meat plate with options such as turkey, ribs, brisket, pulled pork, sausage, and more. Breakfast options include the chorizo mexicano, which hosts enough eggs, spicy sausage, and tortillas to fill both an empty belly and a pair of ears seeking protection from the neighbor's early-rising rooster. Between bites, take advantage of free WiFi to look up new chewing techniques.
A hunk of brisket at VooDoo BBQ & Grill begins its journey suspended over a bed of pecan and oak logs. Coated in a dry rub of local spices, the meat slowly turns on a rotisserie rod for up to 16 hours, its skin crisping while the inside stays a warm pink. The chefs smoke all their beef brisket and pulled pork over logs from Louisiana-based trees to lend them the region's unique smoked flavor, even at the risk of confusing passing botanists. They lightly coat grilled sausages, chicken, and burgers in three signature sauces inspired by the state's Cajun recipes. To complement their menagerie of smoked and grilled meats, they sling a variety of southern sides such as corn pudding, greens, and potato salads. At each of the 13 locations, the aroma of roasting meat fills a space of dark-stained wood and wrought iron; dining rooms awash in a palette of reds, greens, and oranges buzz with the sounds of jazz and blues.