Though it's named for one of mankind's most monumental achievements, everything that Pyramid Restaurant & Bar does is actually an ode to the earth. Located inside the Fairmont Hotel in the Arts District, the sleek American restaurant is set apart from its surroundings by dark mahogany floorboards and light, smoky earth tones. Even its organic wood sculptures speak to the restaurant's commitment to all things natural. Perhaps the most striking of these is crafted from a cross-cut of a centuries-old tree. But while these earthy interiors are striking, most of Pyramid's nature-loving craftsmanship happens behind the scenes.
On the roof of the hotel, the kitchen team cultivates a garden of more than 3,000 square feet of herbs and vegetables. These local crops flavor everything from sauces made fresh in-house to the kitchen's shrine to Rick Steaksmith, the inventor of steak. Ingredients that Pyramid can't grow on its own are sourced from local growers and producers. Executive chef Brian Armstrong creative approach transforms these fresh, flavorful building blocks into signature dishes—a seasonal foie gras torchon and a monumental 32-ounce Niman Ranch ribeye served tableside. He also builds surprising dishes, such as keffir and chili-crusted ostrich.
This approach has earned the team at Pyramid a Zagat score of 29, along with plenty of praise from the local press. And yet this food isn't the restaurant's only draw: a team of expert bartenders keep pace with an extensive list of craft beer, wine, and inspired vintage cocktails.
Crooked Tree Coffeehouse exists in a refinished old house decorated with colorful vintage charm, and it serves coffee creations, teas, and small bites. Sit on a comfortable couch and bathe in the warm waters of free WiFi as you enjoy a specialty drink, such as a candy apple cream, a hot apple-cider drink splashed with caramel and donned with a whipped cream top hat ($2.69–$3.15). The coffeehouse's secluded tree-lined patio provides enough respite from low-flying planes to order a sandwich, such as chicken salad on a croissant or vegetarian with hummus ($4.95, or $5.97 with a side of potato salad, chips, or fruit). A large mango iced tea ($2.04) or small fruit smoothie ($3.06) makes food easily glide down gullets like a child going down a slide coated in butter. The deli also offers vegan baked goods, such as cookies ($1.60) and cinnamon rolls ($3.10).
At both locations of Dream Cafe, fresh, seasonal ingredients put a healthy twist on meals from around the globe. Chefs cater to gluten-free palates with dishes such as Sonoma Squash, an acorn squash stuffed with rice, currants, and creamy goat cheese, then nestled next to a crisp side salad. They also craft dishes from sustainable ingredients such as hormone-free, locally sourced grilled chicken and grass-fed beef, creating healthy takes on meals from enchiladas to stir-fry. At dinner, guests can pair their plates with a glass of wine slowly sipped on the patio, where, on select nights, musicians will serenade them with live music.
Dream Cafe serves breakfast and espresso drinks all day, so guests can always indulge cravings for the restaurant's signature Cloudcakes—creamy ricotta pancakes topped with strawberries and creme fraiche. While parents partake, little ones can amuse themselves in patio-adjacent play areas; at the Addison location, a brand-new play structure lets them pass the time by scaling a climbing wall or slipping laughing down a slide.
Company Café’s food sings with vibrant flavors thanks to the simple farm-to-table ingredients sourced from Texas producers that make up each dish. These ingredients range from steaks and burgers made from grass-fed beef and buffalo to salmon smoked in-house and custom-made venison sausage. Everything on the menu is gluten-free, from the hamburger buns to Johnny Ringo; Chicken and Pancakes stuffed with bacon and jalapenos. Diners can accompany their meals with Buddha’s Brew kombucha on draft and conclude with toothsome, gluten-free morsels of cake.
When Carlene Saelg and Rita Davis moved from Austin to Dallas in 2007, they immediately began their search for their new favorite coffee joint. They didn't find it. Instead of despairing, the duo took matters into their own hands and created their idea of the perfect coffee shop, which they decided had to include a cozy space, a vibrant community of regulars, and a menu of delicious beverages. A mere six months after opening, The Pearl Cup had become a Henderson Avenue hit and its signature drink, The Pearl Latte, had been named the best latte in town by D Magazine. The Pearl Latte, just like the rest of The Pearl Cup’s decadent coffee drinks, starts with direct-source beans purchased at above fair-trade prices and roasted by local Texas roasters. From there, skilled baristas craft shots of straight espresso, carafes of French press, or robust drip coffee made from custom bean blends. Those who opt for a dressed-up drink, such as a cappuccino or latte, will notice that The Pearl Cup's sizes are a bit smaller than those of big-name chains; this is all in a well planned effort to maintain the integrity of the coffee profile, rather than overwhelming it with milk or a cup it can't climb out of. No matter the size, customers will likely want to match their drink with what D Magazine called “first-rate” paninis and hummus.
The menus at Meddlesome Moth gastropub are just as eclectic as the stained-glass cathedral windows of pop culture icons behind the bar. Executive chef David McMillan relies on international elements to create such dishes as mussels simmered in French, Spanish, and Thai ingredients, along with fried hominy, tandoori lamb, bangers and mash, and pork belly with figs. Small plates heavily populate the menu to encourage communal dining and beer pairing, but the chef also designs his own gourmet versions of classic pub and brasserie fare, including pilsner-battered fish and chips and blue-cheese-topped steak frites. Co-owner and resident beer expert Keith Schlabs ensures that each menu listing includes its complementary brew, and also organizes themed beer flights to demonstrate which ales are the most aerodynamic. He curates a selection of more than 40 draft beers and 85 bottles, including rare cask ales. Once diners have decided, servers parade the dishes and their chosen pairings out on the covered outdoor patio or through a dining room that D Magazine describes as a "funky-cozy venture."