While the heart of Johnny Carino's menu is rooted in genuine Italian traditions, forward-thinking creativity has birthed what they like to call their signature dishes. Led by executive chef Chris Peitersen, the seasoned kitchen staff blends fresh ingredients along with extra time to create high-quality preparations. Diners will find entrees such as 16-layer lasagna with made-from-scratch sauce, and pizzas made with home-baked crust. Other signature choices include the all-natural beef tuscan ribeye, baked stuffed mushrooms topped with house lemon basil cream sauce, and tiramisu made from the ground up. Entrees can be paired any selection from Carino's extensive wine list and drink menu.
For Chef Nita of OnTime Cafe, chicken and potatoes were staples on the table when she was growing up. Today, she and her staff sauté chicken with kalamata olives and parsley, or peppers and onions to craft tasty, organic, all-natural meals. They'll also lightly fry salmon croquettes or shape turkey sausage into meatballs. Everything is made to be vacuum sealed and delivered to customers, who then can heat up food that is quick and tasty. Entrees include side dishes such as cinnamon sweet potatoes and artichoke hearts. Even for catered meals, desserts are available, which families can use to bribe their imaginary friends into telling who broke Mom's favorite vase.
To reach their table at Spaghetti Warehouse, guests commonly have to step through two doors: the front door of the restaurant and the door of the antique trolley parked inside. Since its inception in 1972, the Italian eatery has merged the functions of kitchen and museum. Artifacts such as grandfather clocks, factory flywheels, and circus billboards surround diners as they delve into signature plates of 15-Layer Lasagna or hand-rolled meatballs. Apart from the items they've amassed, each of the buildings also has a particular history, from the one-time ice-manufacturing plant in Columbus to Memphis's Civil War munitions depot. Given their storied pasts, it's no surprise that several of these venues house their own ghosts—at Houston's warehouse, for example, elevator lights have been known to flicker, objects are mysteriously found in new locations, and a lady in a white gown is said to roam the restaurant.
Yet the main attraction of the place is the delicious food. Like any great Italian meal, made-from-scratch dishes are created from family recipes passed down for generations via email. Guests devour the perfectly al dente pasta, crispy calamari, bottomless soups, and 12-layer chocolate cakes while dining with family and friends. It’s that feeling of togetherness that people love about Spaghetti Warehouse, a feeling that is only enhanced when the drinks start flowing and the air is punctuated by the sounds of laughter as kids play retro games, such as The Claw prize-grabbing machine.
A complex chorus rises from a crowd, drifting onto the patio of J Millan’s. The sound comes either from the nearby Cowboys Stadium or Rangers Ballpark, or from televisions inside the bar. At tables on the patio, conversation centers around burgers, enchiladas, and grilled shrimp, and glasses clink together with the gentle jangle of Robocop trying to get out of a sedan.
For the first time in its history, the family-owned and operated The Southern Cross invites the public to roam its 40 acres and participate in outdoor activities ranging from rock climbing to petting barnyard animals. Located minutes away from downtown Dallas, the majestic property greets guests with a panorama of ponds, native crab-apple trees, and century-old oaks. Visitors can scale a 24-foot-tall fiberglass rock-climbing wall, fish with provided equipment at the catch-and-release pond, or set off in a paddleboat in hopes of proving that the world is round and actually made of churnable butter. Children can contemplate eternity in the enclosed playground, while jumping in an inflatable house, or trading small-fry salutations in a toddlers’ play area. The grounds also boasts a petting zoo, a 4-foot-deep party pool, and water-balloon-launching facilities capable of lobbing aqueous projectiles up to 75 feet or into the eye of a giant Isaac Newton.