Located in downtown Oak Cliff, this 50-year-old steakhouse will take you back to another time and place. Charco Broiler Steak House is the type of restaurant that locals have been returning to for decades, often with their parents and grandparents coming along for the memories. The impossible-to-miss Sonny the Steer reigns supreme on the roof of Charco Broiler Steak House, touting the fair prices and the restaurant’s impressive variety of steak cuts. Inside, the eatery is draped in shades of brown, with simple lighting and wooden accents that only add to the timelessness of a steakhouse like this. The chicken fried steak smothered in country gravy is a perpetual top seller at Charco Broiler, and dinner plates always emerge from the kitchen with a side salad, baked potato and thick slice of Texas toast, which is just the way it always should be.
It's not entirely surprising that filet mignon is the signature dish at Y.O. Steakhouse. What is surprising is that the meat is buffalo, and that buffalo is only one of several exotic game animals on the Y.O. Ranch. This 48,000-acre sprawl of Hill Country provides chef Tony Street with many of his popular dishes. The wild game special appetizer, for example, acts as an introduction to uncommon meats with grilled quail breasts, wild boar sausage, and venison roll-ups. For dinner, guests can order elk tenderloin in a blackberry port reduction, or venison chops with forest mushroom bread pudding. Of course, Chef Street has also mastered the ubiquitous beef steak. His rib eyes and sirloins are all USDA Prime and cut in-house, then prepped in the classic rancher's style: spiced, charred on a flattop griddle, and served to whoever wins it in a poker game. Seafood is likewise cooked with Texas flair, and ranges from red chili-rubbed salmon to chicken-fried lobster. Each entree finds a place inside a rustic yet swanky dining room, where candlelit tables sit beyond 100-year-old brick arches.
A meal at Dakota’s begins with a downward trip in its elevator. That’s because the steakhouse resides where the First Dallas Baptist Church once sat, and a legally binding clause in the deed forbade future proprietors from selling alcohol on the former church grounds. But Dakota’s isn’t on church grounds—it’s beneath them. Step in at street level, and the canopied glass elevator descends 18 feet into the ground, passing the steakhouse’s legendary courtyard. The gurgle of water gushing over five tiers of granite, the glow of a lava-rock fire pit, and dark glimmer of a black granite bar make the 1,800-square-foot patio—which opens directly to the sky—one of Dallas’s most popular spots for lovebirds. Through French doors, the dining room promises comparably romantic evenings. Hand-cut Italian Carrera marble covers the floors, dark wood paneling hugs the walls, and New Orleans-inspired gas lamps throw a muted glow, and the occasional string of beads, around the room. With a setting so opulent, it speaks volumes about Chef Pete Harrison’s talent that Dakota’s menu leaves just as indelible an impression. Sea salt and fresh ground black pepper top USDA prime filet mignon, New York strip, and porterhouse steaks, which are aged a minimum of 28 days, and receive a final brush of butter before hitting the 1800-degree broiler. Maine lobster and Atlantic salmon also earn rave reviews, as do the specialty cocktails––wild tea white cosmos, cucumber basil martinis––that necessitated Dakota’s subterranean home.
For a classic steakhouse dinner that’s guaranteed to impress your boss, your family or a first date, look no further than Perry’s Steakhouse & Grille in Dallas. Art Deco chandeliers, a wall of wine bottles – more than 5,000 in all – and plush carpeting scream Uptown swank, while the effortlessly amiable staff provide tips and tricks for navigating the menu. Start off with ahi tuna tartare served with wonton crisps, or the signature fried asparagus: crispy spears crowned with jumbo lump crab. While freshly-cut prime steaks – including an impressive-looking bone-in cowboy ribeye – are obviously the centerpiece at this upscale eatery, many folks opt for the massive pork chop, carved tableside and flanked with housemade applesauce. Whichever way you go, lobster mac ‘n’ cheese and au gratin potatoes with a crispy browned top make worthy accompaniments.
Well-heeled Uptown crowds flock to Ocean Prime for ultra-fresh seafood and fancy cocktails. Hardwood floors, an impressive stone fireplace, white tablecloths and slick modern lighting set the scene for extravagant dishes like a “smoking” shellfish tower, deviled eggs dressed up with truffles and caviar, twin lobster tails over asparagus and Chilean sea bass with whipped potatoes and champagne truffle sauce. Red meat lovers will be taken care of here as well, with gargantuan plates like a Maytag blue cheese-crusted bone-in filet, and in true steakhouse fashion, they offer a whopping five different varieties of potatoes, including lobster and jalapeno au gratin varieties. Round things out with a bottle from the California-heavy wine list and perhaps a slice of ten-layer carrot cake.