Posts Tagged ‘Dallas’

The Perot Museum of Nature and Science, Dallas, TX

20 June 2016

This past Friday, after my work finished, Raegan, Ian, and Erin and I headed to downtown Dallas to visit the Perot Museum. We got there about 1330.

One of the reasons I wanted to hit the museum is that they were playing an IMax film about our National Parks. We scored our entry tickets to include tickets for the show at 1415. Raegan got in free as she is an educator, and Erin got a discount for being a student.

We looked through the gift shop prior to show time. The movie was essentially a long commercial for our national parks (I have no problem with that). It was beautifully filmed. It was in 3D format, which was occasionally interesting but didn’t add much to the scenery.

They have a flow through the place. They want you to take a couple long escalators up to the 3rd floor, where you see a small exhibit on earth and space science, including an earthquake simulator. They also have a decent set of fossils there. On top of this level is a mezzanine devoted to birds. This was my favorite level in the museum.

From there, you drift down to level two. I love mineral collections, and while the mineral collection here was on the small side, they had some spectacular large crystals.

The life sciences hall was kind of sparse, but one thing that was pretty neat was some MRIs of the human body showing the midsections. Seeing the relationships between bones and organs was cool.

The hydrocarbons exhibit was basically a long commercial for fracking.

The Innovations hall has some cool hands-on stuff. The best thing was a robot programming station that used a form of Logo on a drag-and-drop GUI to program the robot to roam around the table.

We left right before 1800. It was an enjoyable visit, but was less extensive than other science museums we have been to. We won’t have a return visit for some time, unless they add some spectacular new exhibit. It’s worth a visit.

JG’s Burgers, Dallas, TX

15 March 2016

J.G.'s Old Fashioned Hamburgers Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

I had been to a nearby store, so I hit JG’s. It wasn’t the worst burger around, but it wasn’t nearly the best, either. I had the single cheeseburger, with a side of onion rings. The rings first. I don’t know they were cut and breaded there, they were very uniform, and had little flavor. The burger was OK. It was a small patty on a big bun. One thing that was nice, a big bar to dress your burger. I used mayo; that was all I needed. Oh, and some pickles. Regardless, the burger had little texture and not much beef flavor. I sorta think I should have had a double.

My check was $10.88. Service was very friendly. I would go back if someone else wanted to, but I wouldn’t go on my own.

Norma’s Cafe, Dallas, TX

16 November 2014

Norma's Cafe on Urbanspoon

This place was great! We are in Dallas for a visit to the Dallas Museum of Art, and Norma’s is just a couple miles to the SW. We got there about 1215, and it was packed. We got a table right away (the table was small, and the four of us were a tight fit).

We started with some perfect onion rings. We also got a pile of amazing dinner rolls and cornbread. We ordered a pair of CFS for Ian and I, Erin got a Frito chili pie, and a chicken fried chicken for Raegan. Here was the only issue with the meal, we got three CFS. Raegan decided to go ahead an have it for lunch. Those CFS were great, a 9.5 out of 10. They were kind of gnarled up, but very tasty and clearly breaded there. We had pintos, mac and cheese, corn, carrots, green beans, and mashers and gravy for sides. Every bit of that was eaten and was great! Erin enjoyed her chili pie.

We got slices of chocolate pie, chocolate cake, and custard pie for dessert, and they were all wonderful. The iced tea was excellent.

A note on service. It was bloody crowded in there, but I thought service was just outstanding. The drinks never ran out, everything was delivered quickly, and the two things we asked for extra (some jam for those wonderful rolls, and some extra gravy for the CFS) came in less than a minute. Our server was also super friendly and not rushed at all.

Our check was $71.30. At first I thought it was too high, but fully $20 was the appetizer and the desserts. All of the food was great. I think we got pretty good value. I’d go back any time.

Cowboy Chicken, Dallas, TX

12 January 2014

Cowboy Chicken on Urbanspoon

I had dinner here around 12 December. I have had dinner at another Cowboy Chicken location a couple years ago and liked it. This was a little bit disappointing. The chicken was very dry. I ate all of it, but it required a lot of iced tea. The sides, mac and cheese, and ranchero beans, were pretty darn good.

Given the good experience at my first try, I will go back again at some point. My check was $12.21.

Humperdink’s, Dallas, TX (Northwest Hwy)

14 September 2013

Humperdink's Texas on Urbanspoon

I met my friend Keith and a couple of his Dallas-area family members here for dinner 29 August. I just missed our OKC friends Sherri and Richard, who got to the restaurant about five minutes after I left; it would have been very cool to run into them.

We started out with fried pickles. Those were darn fine, with a very good ranch dressing to dip them in. I don’t remember what the rest of the group ordered, but I got the chicken tenders platter. It came with BBQ sauce and ranch dressing for dipping, and was very good.

Service was pretty good in spite of how busy the restaurant was. The iced tea was very good. Our check was $39.48, which is great value given that there were four adults and a six-year-old. I would gladly go back. And the company was outstanding!

Boston Market, Dallas, TX (North Central and Forest)

5 June 2013

Boston Market's Rotisserie Grill on Urbanspoon

I had dinner here with Raegan and Erin last evening. The Boston Market chain has been upgrading their restaurants the past couple years, but this one is a step beyond, with a very nice interior.

I got the turkey dinner, and Raegan and Erin chicken. The chicken first. I used to just love Boston Market chicken. The flavor, moistness, all were great. Over the past couple years the chicken flavor has changed to me. It’s still good, it just has an odd hint of flavor that detracts from the former true roasted flavor. I tried some of Erins dinner, and it had that odd flavor.

I got the turkey because of that odd flavor. Their turkey has always been great. The turkey last night was OK at best; it was kind of flat flavor-wise. Turkey, especially roast turkey, usually is just full of flavor, but this didn’t have a lot.

The sides were all very good. We had mashers, mac and cheese (LOVE that Boston Market mac and cheese!), and mixed veg. Raegan had a piece of pecan pie that went home with us since she was quite full.

Service was outstanding. The tea was Gold Peak, and was OK at best. Our check was $38.02; it seems a bit high, but we bought some cookies ($4) and the pecan pie slice. I’m of mixed feelings about Boston Market; I used to love the place, and now I just like it.

Romas Italian Restaurant, Dallas, TX

14 October 2011

Roma Pasta House on Urbanspoon

This was another place I saw after I left Ozona last week. I decided to check it out last evening. Overall, a decent experience.

The meal started with iced tea (good) and some interesting small (~1.5in diameter) hard rolls. This came with some very good marinara, that came in handy later.

I ordered the Trio Platter. This is chicken parmesan, on a bed of spaghetti marinara, and with a side of fettuccine alfredo. Taking these in reverse, the alfredo was OK. Not quite bland, but not terribly rich, either. It was OK. The spaghetti didn’t have a tremendous amount of marinara, so I used what was delivered with the bread to enhance the amount. The chicken was pounded flat, and was a bit overcooked. The breading was just a touch too crispy, and the chicken was just a touch touch (as in not completely fork-tender). Not a heck of a lot of flavor (probably due to the overcooking).

So not a the best meal I’ve had, but also not the worst. I would go back here again. My check was $12.44, which is not a bad value.

Back Country Barbeque, Dallas, TX

14 October 2011

Back Country Bar-B-Q on Urbanspoon

I drove past this place last week coming back from Ozona, and decided to give it a try. I went here for dinner last Wednesday. It was a mixed experience.

I ordered a combination dinner, with ribs and chicken. The ribs were OK at best. They didn’t have very much flavor, and were really fatty. I discarded one altogether as it was small and tough. The chicken started out well, not burned, and had good flavor (I got light meat, a breast). But the deeper I went, the dryer it got, and finally it was so dry that the chicken was tough and stringy. I didn’t finish it.

There were limited sides. I got baked beans and brown beans. The baked beans were good, white beans and BBQ sauce. The pintos were decent. They were flavored with significant chili powder, but they also needed a bit more cooking time.

The sauce was sweet (very sweet) hickory sauce. Almost two sweeet.

I would have liked to see some more sides (like green beans, mac and cheese). There were a number of cold sides like potato salad.

Overall, an OK experience. Some of the other meats looked good, so if I were to go back, I would try them. I got there around 1745 and left around 1845. It was mostly empty. My check was $14.30.

Ozona Bar and Grill, Dallas, TX

5 October 2011

Ozona Bar & Grill on Urbanspoon

I ate at Ozona a couple times a couple years ago. It had an outstanding chicken fried steak, reported #1 in the Metroplex from D Magazine, and I pretty much had to agree. I do not get down to that area very often, though. So Monday evening, I wanted something different, and decided to head down to Ozona again.

I got there around 1830 and left around 1930. The place was about 70% full, and the Rangers playoff game was on the TVs everywhere. I got iced tea, and ordered the CFS with onion rings, and extra gravy.

That was a perfect CFS. It was breaded perfectly, cooked all the way through, was fork-tender, and had amazing flavor. The size was good also, in that it filled me up just right. The gravy was really, really good also. Not too pepperly, you could taste the flour and milk, and it was a wonderful complement to the CFS. The onion rings were perfect, thin-sliced, tender, well breaded.

Service was really good, the tea was excellent, just a great restaurant experience. My check was $16.46.

It’s probably better that Ozona isn’t in Richardson or Plano, that would be too close…

Campisi’s, Dallas, TX

22 September 2011

Campisi's Pizza To Go on Urbanspoon

I had dinner at the Campbell and Coit location yesterday evening. I picked it basically by driving by and seeing the sign, and deciding on the spot that some Italian would be nice.

I ordered fettuccine alfredo with chicken. I asked if the chicken was grilled or sauteed, they said grilled, I asked for sauteed, I got grilled. Oh well. The meal was not bad. That’s not to say it was very good. The noodles were well cooked, the meal hot, the chicken OK. There was just not a lot of flavor to the meal. The alfredo did not exhibit the rich flavor I normally associate with the sauce. The noodles didn’t have much flavor beyond flour.

The tea was brewed, but weak.

So overall, I would go back to Campisi’s, but only if I were going with others and they suggested it. I would go a mile south to Cafe Amore first. My check was $13.80.

KEOM 88.5, Dallas Area

20 September 2011

This is my favorite music station in the DFW MetroPlex. They mainly play 70s stuff, that’s my favorite decade of music, and occasionally go into the 60s or the 80s.

There is little or no inane DJ chatter (sorry, being redundant there just a bit), they have occasional educational segments, and news at the top of the hour.

But mainly, they play music, good music. Right on; they are the #1 button on my radio when I’m in the area. NPR is #2. Hopefully they might be able to stream over the Internet one day.

Take 2 (and 3!): La Hacienda Ranch, Dallas, TX

17 August 2011

La Hacienda Ranch on Urbanspoon

I ate at the Hacienda last summer and liked it.

Last week, a couple friends wanted some Tex-Mex, and I suggested the Hacienda, and we headed over there after work. Again, it smelled great!

This time, I got a steak. I didn’t have high expectations. That steak was… wonderful. One of the best I have had in years. Nearly a perfect meal. The steak was a bone-in ribeye, had wonderful flavor. It came with roasted potatoes that I could have eaten until I exploded. It came with mixed roasted vegetables and mushrooms that had great potential, but were ruined by having bell and red peppers mixed in.

That steak was so good, I went there again yesterday. I got the same meal I got last week, except I asked for NO PEPPERS in the roast veg. That turned in into a perfect meal! The steak was served as medium rare (but I let it rest for about five minutes, and it cooked at the table to a perfect medium), the roasted potatoes were perfect, and the roasted veg and mushrooms were perfect. The roast flavor of the potatoes and such was so good I could hardly believe it.

That makes Hacienda very, very dangerous to me! The combination of great steak and great Tex-Mex is a deadly combination to my waistline!

Service was perfect – just the right amount of pass-bys, and the tea (excellent tea, BTW) was always kept full. My check was $34.08, and worth every penny.

It’s probably better that this place is not in OKC. Highly recommended.

Texas Land and Cattle Company, Dallas, TX

27 July 2011

Texas Land & Cattle Steak House on Urbanspoon

This is a chainlet in the DFW Metroplex. I think I ate in one 10 or more years ago, and can’t remember if I liked it or not. But it smelled really good when I drove by a couple days ago, so I decided to give it a try.

I went very basic. Iced tea, large ribeye, side of sauteed onions and mushrooms, and soup.

The tea was good, and my server brought a large carafe to the table – I like that!

The soup was excellent – steak soup, basically small chunks of steak that made up a stew. The broth was really, really good, and the carrots and potatoes were perfect. The meal came with a loaf of decent bread also.

The onions and mushrooms were well sauteed and had good flavor. There were pepper-sized pieces of garlic on the mushrooms; probably close to too much, as the garlic overwhelmed the taste of the shrooms. I ate all of it, though.

The steak was wonderful. A perfect medium, not charred in the slightest, one very small piece of gristle. There was a little pepper on the steak. It was not fork tender, but it was large, it was close to fork tender, and it had tremendous beef flavor. An excellent steak.

I got there around 1815, and left shortly after 1900. The place was about 50% full when I got there, and 75% full when I left. Service was excellent. My check was $20.49.

Bone Daddy’s, Dallas, TX

17 February 2011

Bone Daddy's House Of Smoke on Urbanspoon

Today at lunch it was suggested that we head over to Bone Daddy’s. The last time I ate at BD’s was probably 10 years ago; I seem to remember it was good then.

Now, it’s important to note that if you or your lunch/dinner companion would be offended by the servers dress in a Hooters, then offense will be taken at BD’s as well. The servers are all young and beautiful and scantily clad. The BBQ is first-rate, though.

There were nine of us, and we had to wait about 10 minutes for a table (given how many people were standing around waiting, I think that was pretty good). The place was CROWDED!

We ordered a bunch of appetizers. There were some tortillas filled with chopped brisket and jalapenos, some deep fried jalapanos, and I got two orders of chiken wings. The wings were very large and the BBQ sauce they came with was very good.

I ordered a two-meat dinner, with pulled pork and chopped brisket. That was some very, very good BBQ. It was tender, smoky, and was a lot of lunch. I got mac and cheese and some ranch-style beans. Both were very good, the beans especially (they were thick and had brisket in them).

The iced tea was very good, in both sweet and unsweetened configurations.

All in all, a very good meal and excellent company. Service was outstanding considering how full the place was. My check was $44.12, but the two appetizers I got for the table were $18 of that, and that includes an 18% forced tip. Our server busted her butt, and so I won’t complain about the forced tip, and I even added a couple extra bucks since she worked hard not only on our table, but at least several others.

La Hacienda Ranch, Dallas, TX

12 August 2010

I picked this place at random as I was driving in Dallas. As I walked up, it smelled good.

I got iced tea and some queso. The iced tea was good, and the queso was hotter than the hinges (not spicy, rather from the stovel the spiciness was just perfect).

I ordered mixed fajitas. I started working on my USA Today crossword, got about three answers, and here came dinner. Literally 2-3 minutes. The chicken was well cooked, the steak medium, but the onions really could have used a bit more time before showing at the table. I moved the onions around a lot to try to get them cooked a bit more.

The fajitas were tasty, though. I made three with tortillas and ate the rest off of the plate. The steak was just a touch on the tough side.

I got there around 1840 and left around 1915. The place was only about 40% full the entire time. Service was excellent, I never ran out of tea. My check was $22.59. Good stuff!

Yet Some More Cool Things From The Air

13 February 2010

On my most recent trip to Omaha, there were a couple neat things I saw.

Omaha is on the Missouri River. The Missouri flows in a very well-defined flood plain along a lot of the Nebraska-Iowa border. The snow really helps bring out the terrain differences.

This shot has Nebraska City in the center of the picture; the Omaha Public Power District (OPPD) (another shot related to this plant farther down) coal-fired power plant is making steam. The flood plain is at roughly 920 ft (above mean sea level); the higher ground in Iowa is up to about 1200 ft, and the higher ground on the Nebraska side is about 1000 ft.

Not much to see in Omaha, but on the way home…

As we left Eppley (OMA), we left to the NW, and looped around over west Omaha. There was a broken layer of low stratus across the region almost all the way down to the NE-KS border. I was on the left side, and say a really cool thing. The MidAmerican coal-fired power plant is right across the Missouri River from Omaha. It’s plume was punching through the low cloud layer.

A little farther south, the OPPD plant at Nebraska City was doing the same thng.

Farther south, we flew west of El Dorado Lake in KS. I thought it was pretty cool how the arms of the lake had frozen over.

On this trip, we ended up flying much farther east than usual. At this point, we are usually west of I-35, but since we were east of I-35 we saw several cities we don’t usually get to.

This is Winfield, KS.

And this is Arkansas City, KS.

This is one of the weirdest shaped lakes in Oklahoma, Kaw Lake. I have never been to this lake, but it’s on the list.

And a bit farther on, Ponca City, OK.

The dam at the upper left is for Kaw Lake. Ponca clearly does a lot of oil-related business.

Next, we flew near my home for six years, and where I later met my very cute roommate, Stillwater, OK.

As we flew over eastern Oklahoma County, it occurred to me that we might be near Girl Scout Camp Cookieland, where our Girl Scout troop has camped several times, and Erin attended Summer Camp. I remembered it was along 29th and east of Peebly Road, so I started shooting pictures along what I thought was Peebly. Turns out I just got Cookieland in the first frame.

Finally, as we broke through the clouds on approach to DFW, the snow from the storm the day before was amazing. My seatmate made the observation that it looked like we were landing back at Omaha.

That’s it!

Saltgrass Steakhouse

13 August 2009

I ate at a Saltgrass Steakhouse for dinner this evening. I stopped at the location on US-75 just south of Midpark Road in Dallas, TX. I’ve previously eaten at Saltgrass locations in west and east Plano, TX, McKinney, TX, Lewisville, TX, and maybe a couple others I can’t think of right now.

Saltgrass has always been a fairly high quality place. I’ve had some excellent food there, and I think the worst was a burned steak (I don’t mean just overcooked from Medium to Medium Well, I’m talking black char 3/4s of the way through) that got replaced and was complementary. I like their CFS pretty well, and I’ve had NY Strips, Ribeyes, and T-Bones.

I had a T-Bone this evening. The tenderloin side was PERFECT. It was literally fork tender, and very tasty. The strip side was a bit undercooked (I had asked for medium), and near the bone the steak was between rare and medium rare. It wasn’t underdone enough that I sent it back for more cooking, though.

I got a decent baked potato; it did not have the cheese I asked for, but that’s of little matter. I also got a bowl of really, really good baked potato soup; it had plenty of cheese to make up for the baked potato. I don’t know what they do to to BP soup; it has kind of a pinkish color, and is a bit peppery, but thick and tasty. Great stuff.

Cindi’s NY Deli and Restaurant, Dallas, TX

25 June 2009

Cindi's New York Style Deli on Urbanspoon

While on our couple-only trip to Dallas, my cute but hungry roommate and I decided to have lunch together. We decided that we would like to try a local deli or sandwich shop, and our fallback would be a Jason’s Deli a couple miles away. From the Embassy Suites atrium, I fired up Google Maps on my Blackberry, and did a map search for “deli”. The first entry was for Cindi’s, and happily enough the location was only a mile or so away to the south.

We got there just a bit after noon, and had about a 10-minute wait. We checked out the baked goods, they looked fantastic. They had little mice made out of icing, with almond flakes for ears, and similar stuff. Pretty creative.

We got the menu, and after reading it Raegan remarked something to the effect of “this is an incredible fusion of deep south, southwest, Asian, and Jewish cuisines”. It really had a lot of different stuff on it.

I ended up getting a Tuesday lunch special of roast beef with mashed potatoes and green beans. The meat was fairly tender and had a really nice taste. The brown gravy was also good, but there was (as usual) not enough. The green beans were really good.

Raegan ordered a stuffed avocado salad. It was easily enough for two people to eat as a main course. She really liked it.

I had iced tea also, it was very good.

The service was good even though the place was very busy. There were seniors, families with kids, business types, and more. It was a real cross section of society. We decided that Cindi’s are on the list of acceptable places to eat.

We both remarked that Cindi’s had the feel of a “throwback” to a blue-plate special kind of restaurant. This is not a bad observation, we both remember those old time restaurants with fondness, for the simplicity of the fare and the economical costs.

The tab for the two of us was $21.49. We were at the central location, just south of I-635 on the west side of US-75.

Dickeys BBQ, Dallas

20 May 2009

Dickey's Barbecue Pit on Urbanspoon

I like Dickeys. They started in Dallas, and are all over the Metroplex, and even in a number of other states.

I had lunch this afternoon at the Dickeys on Plano Road in Richardson, TX. I got a three-meat with ribs, chicken, and brisket. The ribs were not bad, but the chicken was really dry. The brisket was excellent. The sides at Dickeys are always good. I had green beans and potatoes au gratin. The iced tea was excellent.

13 Aug 2009 Update:

Ate lunch at the same place. Got a two-meat special with pulled pork and brisket, with sides of green beans and potatoes au gratin. All just outstanding. Wanted to get ribs for dessert.

Dickeys BBQ Pit, Dallas

23 March 2009

DFW airport has a couple of Dickeys. The one outside of Gate A16 has an “indoor” sitting area, which is nice.

I got to eat lunch there today while passing through. I got brisket, which was perfect, and sides of green beans and potato casserole. These also have real iced tea, instead of the concentrate stuff most of the airport restaurants sell.

Update: 27 June 2009

Since I wrote the original post, I have scarfed at two Dickey’s in the NE Metroplex.

A couple weeks ago, some work friends and I ate at the Dickey’s on Plano Road in Richardson. I got the brisket and turkey. The brisket was pretty good, the turkey was outstanding. I got my usual green beans and potato au gratin, both great.

On Thursday my very cute roommate and I joined two work friends at the Dickey’s on 15th Street in Plano, TX. I got the brisket dinner, and it was excellent. Raegan got the smoked turkey and pronounced it very good.