I was just in Dallas again and really enjoyed all of my choices.
First dinner was at Fearings. Every time we go to Dallas we have one meal at Fearings. I've certainly seen detractors but I've had consistently good food there over the years. This time I had the Tortilla Soup to start. Always consistently good with great flavors and textures. I knew I wanted dessert so I had the sampler of crab cakes, short rib enchilada, and two small lobster tacos.The crab cakes were very good though I wouldn't call them "lump" crab meat. The enchilada was really good with a velvety cheese sauce. The lobster tacos were also exceptional. For dessert I had the dark chocolate cherry layers. It was worth going there just for that. Plate licking good, especially the cherry ice cream. It was expensive, some will certainly say overpriced, but the food and service is consistently great for me.
Second dinner was at Mesa. An interesting location - across from a check cashing place and next door to a pawn shop. Certainly not the Ritz but better prices (hard not to be better) and excellent food and service. I got there before 7 so was able to get a half price ($5) margarita; I had the Smokey Margarita. It was very interesting in a good way. Every one of the main courses looked good. I went with the server's recommendation of the Cochinita Pibill, a pork stew. It came with in house tortillas, rice, the creamiest black beans I've ever had, and really good spicy pickled red onions. I went with the blueberry bread pudding for dessert; I don't think that's a traditional dish but it was really good as well. Next time I'm in Dallas I'm definitely going back to try some more off the menu.
The guys we were working with took us to lunch at 10 50 BBQ. They said it had been open about a month and the pit master was just beginning to hit their stride. Since they sell by weight, I tried the pulled pork, brisket, and ribs. The brisket and ribs were standouts. There's probably better in the Dallas area (haven't been able to make it to the Pecan Lodge during hours) but I'm from Maryland so pretty much any Texas BBQ, even in Dallas, is going to be great.
Third dinner was at Ramen Hakata. I had a bowl of the Spicy Miso Ramen. The server recommended the spicy red stuff on the side. I used about 80% of it and that was plenty for me. All the stuff in the bowl was excellent. The broth certainly tasted like a lot of work had gone into it. This is another place that I'd love to go back to.
Fourth dinner was at Knife. I really wanted to have unreserved praise for this place as the menu is really interesting beyond the normal steak place. All of the actual meat was excellent. Some of the other parts were disappointing. I had the Siracha Pork Belly "slab"; more like an appetizer. This was all around greatness. All elements of the dish were really good. It came on a toasted steamed bun with not too much hoison sauce and some excellent pickles that I assume are in-house. For the main course I went with the "The Rib" burger. This is a slab of short rib meat on a bun. The meat was excellent - great crust and fall apart tender inside. It had a horseradish sauce that needed a bit more kick to it. It also came with collard greens on it. I like collard greens but on a "burger" this was a total textural (limp) and taste (not much) miss. It also came with more of the pickles which once again really complemented the meat. There was a choice of onion rings or fries on the side; I had the onion rings which were perfect. The biggest disappointment with it, though, was the bun. The bun appeared to be a standard grocery store potato bun. For a place like this they need to make their own (if they did make the bun, then that's even worse). Overall, I'd like to go back for some of the other meats because they really hit home runs with the meat. On the other hand, given the price, there needs to be fewer disappointments with the other elements.