Donna Cooks


The Sprinkles Frenzy
April 4, 2007, 12:27 am
Filed under: DFW Restaurant Reviews

Sprinkles, the Beverly Hills cupcake boutique, opened its doors in Dallas last Monday.  Yes, I did just call it a cupcake boutique.  What else would it be called at $3.25 per cupcake?  DFW is certainly no stranger to high priced sweets, with Plano being the home of the world’s most expensive chocolates, NoKa.  Can another luxury high-calorie commodity like cupcakes survive?  Judging by the insane lines outside the newly opened Sprinkles store (expect waits up to two hours), the answer is yes.

So what is the craze about?  The most common rave I hear about Sprinkles is that they are Oprah’s favorite cupcakes.  If they’re good enough for Oprah, they should be good enough for me, right?  Well, I’m not exactly in the same income tax bracket as Oprah, but I was fortunate enough to have a sweet friend who brought me two dozen of these treats for my birthday (after waiting in line for more than an hour).  Here’s my two cents on Sprinkles’ $3.25 “designer” baked goods.

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We had 8 different flavors at the birthday party: black & white, dark chocolate, red velvet, vanilla, chai latte, lemon coconut, pumpkin, and strawberry (3 of each flavor).  The cupcakes are about average size with plenty of icing.  In fact, maybe it’s a little too much icing.  They have an attractive round shape (round and stout) and when lined up neatly in the box, the uniformity is charmingly cute.  Thus far I have tried four flavors, dark chocolate, vanilla, chai latte, and pumpkin.  With the thick layer of icing on the cupcake, I find the naturally less sweet flavors (chai latte and pumpkin) more appealing than the sweeter ones.  The cupcakes are so rich that for me, it is impossible to eat more than one in one sitting.  With richer flavors like vanilla, it’s hard to even eat a whole one in one sitting.  It’s a good cupcake, but I can’t seem to find anything to justify the $3.25/cupcake price tag.  They’re definitely better than the cupcakes at your local grocer bakery (icing does not have that artificial pasty taste or texture), but they are also about 10 times more expensive.  Out of the four flavors I’ve tried, chai latte is currently the favorite.  It tastes exactly like the Starbucks chai latte, and that almost justifies the $3.25 pricetag since a cup of the stuff at Starbucks will cost about the same (even more if you want soy milk substitute).

Nonetheless, the cupcakes were a crowd pleaser.  We managed to finish 14 cupcakes among the dozen guests at the party.  But now, I have the ultimate dilemma.  I have $32 worth of cupcakes leftover in my fridge and swimsuit season just around the corner…

Sprinkles Cupcakes
4020 Villanova Dr.
Dallas, 75225



A New Name for Cantonese Cuisine in Town (New San Dor)
March 8, 2007, 1:15 am
Filed under: DFW Restaurant Reviews

For some time now, the First Chinese BBQ chain has dominated in the DFW area for authentic Chinese cuisine (Cantonese specialty). Ask any food lover for the best Chinese food in town, and they’ll take you right to the hanging roasted pigs and ducks at First Chinese BBQ. A new Asian supermarket, Asia World Market, recently opened in northeast Plano (Legacy at 75), and has brought some new Asian restaurants to the DFW dining scene.

I was checking out the new Asia World Market before a BYOB dinner (almost a weekly ritual now since there are quite a few good BYOB restaurants in DFW) at Jasmine Thai (my favorite Thai place in DFW thus far). By the way, the Asia World Market is large, clean, with a good selection of all sorts of Asian foods. I noticed that Japanese and Korean items had their own aisles. Anyway, armed with a bottle of Yalumba Barossa, I was ready for some excellent Thai. However, out of all the restaurants in the shopping center, we noticed one with a particularly busy amount of activity, New San Dor.

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I went in with the intention of grabbing a takeout menu and coming back another time, but between the modern sophisticated look of the restaurant (love the clay orange walls) and the mouthwatering extensive Cantonese menu, I knew I had to try it for dinner that very night. Jasmine Thai would have to wait until another time as we put our name down on New San Dor’s waiting list.

Here’s the downside to eating at New San Dor (and hopefully it’s temporary): the restaurant has been open for less than a month and the employees’ efficiency completely reflect the restaurant’s new-ness. The logistics of clearing out tables and seating new customers didn’t flow smoothly. What was quoted as a 10 minute wait turned out to be 25 minutes. I’m not a patient one so this unexpected wait was irking at my irritability.

Once seated, service was much more prompt. Turns out New San Dor offers wine and beer but will allow you to BYO for a $5 corking fee, not too bad at all, especially considering the waiter goes through the whole ceremonial bit (I hate when restaurants charge a corking fee, but then just leave a corkscrew at your table for self-service). The menu was expansive, somehow we narrowed it down to two entrees, the sizzling seafood plate and beef with bitter melon. While we waited for our entrees, I took notice of the patrons around us. A Chinese family to our left had ordered an appetizing vegetarian tofu stir-fry, crispy chicken, and some sort of hot pot. The WASPy couple to our right had ordered your Americanized Chinese standards, sesame chicken and broccoli beef. Usually, at these authentic type Chinese restaurants, their “fake” Chinese food is lacking (like at First Chinese BBQ). Surprisingly, at New San Dor, perfectly glistening individual pieces (not stuck together by the gummy soggy batter) of sesame chicken is served on a bed of fresh steamed broccoli and beef with broccoli is actually beef slices with Chinese broccoli (gai lan). Now, I only got to see these dishes, not taste them, but the couple next to us scarfed their food down in no time, noting how delicious it is with every bite.  Here’s the run down on our entrees:

Sizzling Seafood Plate:

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I don’t think I can rave enough about this dish.  I’m not even a big seafood lover but I’ve been thinking about this dish for half a week now.  Tender lightly floured pieces of shrimp, calamari, and scallops in a brown sauce seasoned with garlic and black pepper.  The calamari was pleasantly chewy and the scallops perfectly tender, the shrimp was a little bit too well done.  It’s like seafood fajitas with a great Cantonese-style sauce.

Beef with Bitter Melon:

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Bitter melon is a Chinese veggie that is more like squash than melon, and as its name implies, is bitter.  Saying that it’s an acquired taste is an understatement.  I’m actually not a die-hard fan of bitter melon (I was with an adventurous companion who insisted he wanted to give bitter melon a try), but I can handle it when the melon has been peeled before cooked (the skin is the most bitter part), like at Genroku.  New San Dor’s version had the skin on (which is common in traditional preparation) and was a little too bitter for my taste.  If you don’t think you’re into bitter vegetables, I challenge you to try the tender beef slices in the same dish.  They have just a hint of bitterness, providing some depth to the otherwise simple brown sauce.  As expected, my companion didn’t become a bitter melon fan, but still ate up the delicious beef slices.

Getting our check took a little longer than we wanted, but I’m not going to be too harsh on the service since the restaurant is so new.  Dinner was $38 for two entrees, corking fee, tax and tip, only a tad more expensive than First Chinese BBQ.  Every dish at New San Dor, both the ones we sampled and judging from the looks of the ones on the surrounding tables, was well-executed and as far as I can tell, used fresh ingredients.  I will definitely be back.  I noticed that there is a small menu of set family style dinners (prix fixe based on how many are in your party) written in Chinese.  I can’t read Chinese (only very basic characters) so perhaps when my parents are in town, we’ll give the set menu family style dinners a try. 

New San Dor is giving First Chinese BBQ a run for their money as my favorite Cantonese restaurant in DFW.  It doesn’t have the roasted goods hanging in the window, but the atmosphere and the tasty dishes are hard to beat.

Oh, one more thing.  Boba Latte, my favorite bubble tea place in DFW, has opened a second location in this shopping center (original at Belt Line & Greenville in Richardson).  They use real fruit instead of the powder stuff for smoothies and slushies.  Good place for dessert if you decide to try out New San Dor.

Rating: 4.5 / 5 (spruce up the service and this place gets a 5 in my book)

New San Dor
240 Legacy Dr
Plano, TX 75023



Try Again in Northern Carrollton (Italian Villa)
March 6, 2007, 12:57 pm
Filed under: DFW Restaurant Reviews

The paperwork on the house is signed. I’m moving to northern Carrollton in mid-May.

For those who have kept up, I’ve been on a search for a trusty neighborhood favorite in the northern Carrollton area, some place casual but satisfying that I can regularly visit when I don’t feel like cooking. So far, Goodfella’s has been a little disappointing but Mena’s has provided solid Tex-Mex (although Mena’s is still a little far to be considered the trusty neighborhood fave). This time, we tried Italian Villa in a strip mall at the northwest corner of Old Denton and Hebron, definitely close to my soon-to-be home.

Italian Villa’s warm ambiance is casual. On a weekend lunch, the place is about half full. The menu is 4 pages of all the regular Italian features (pizza, pastas, subs, with a few house specialties) plus a page for lunch specials starting at $5.95. Prompt service brought complimentary bread and butter with our drinks. The bread was stale and crusty, not in a delightfully chewy French loaf kind of way but in a “I think this bread sat under the heat lamp to keep warm too long” kind of way.

Among the 5 of us, we sampled quite a range of dishes, whose taste and quality also ranged. At the better end were the Eggplant Parmesan and Chicken Murphy. I didn’t expect much from the Chicken Murphy dish since its name completely lacks any hint of Italian-ness, but the tender chicken breasts in a creamy tomato-jalapeno sauce was fiery and smooth at the same time, and perhaps the best dish out of the five.

Eggplant Parmesan:

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Chicken Murphy:

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In the middle of the pack were the Beef Ravioli (my choice) and Chicken Marsala. You have a choice of either cheese or ground beef filling for your ravioli entree. I became a little concerned when I asked the waiter whether it was four-cheese ravioli, and he responded “you get either cheese or meat.” I ordered the ground beef version with a sense of unease, but I shouldn’t have worried because the large, piping hot raviolis were a delight. My only complaint is that the marinara sauce had an uncanny resemblance to canned tomato sauce. Chicken Marsala endured the same complaint. The chicken and mushrooms were tender and done just right, but the sauce was a bit bland.

Beef Ravioli:

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Chicken Marsala:

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At the bottom was the cheese tortellini. This dish was just so bland and uninteresting. Just a few sprinkles of freshly ground black pepper or some fresh chopped up herbs would have made this more edible.

Cheese Tortellini:

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With the lunch specials ranging from $5.95 to $7.95, you can’t really expect Italian Villa to be cranking out dishes comparable to the more dressed up Italian places. The dishes are hit and miss, but I think there’s potential to discover a few trusty favorites. I’m likely to give it another chance, but I’m really hoping they improve the stale bread situation.

Rating: 3 / 5

Italian Villa
1012 W Hebron Pkwy
Carrollton, TX 75010



It’s BYOB Time! (Zorba’s)
March 1, 2007, 2:11 pm
Filed under: DFW Restaurant Reviews

Zorba’s serves up some great Greek food. But I don’t just visit when I have a craving for pastisio. With its festive and casual atmosphere and BYOB policy, Zorba’s is my neighborhood eatery, it’s where I go when I don’t have time to cook dinner, because like homemade comfort food, Zorba’s consistency in food and service quality satisfies every time.

I did a short rave about Zorba’s a while ago. Once I realized that I was frequenting this little place twice a month (this is such a rarity since I love variety when it comes to food, in case you couldn’t already tell from this blog), a full review was in order. I normally go to Zorba’s with one other companion, pick up a bottle at the Aggie-owned Connossieur just a few storefronts down, and order the Chicago Greektown invention flaming cheese (Saganaki) appetizer, the Zorba’s platter to split, and end with whichever dessert looks the best that night (which is usually all of them, and it is always a tough decision). The BYOB policy makes it a great casual date restaurant, definitely more creative than going to Olive Garden and more affordable than splurging at a high end restaurant.

This past visit was a little different. My parents were in town visiting so I had a party of three to Zorba’s. We skipped picking up a bottle of wine since my mom doesn’t drink alcohol and headed straight for the restaurant. Knowing the size of the plates at Zorba’s, I decided splitting two plates among the three of us was the way to go. Naturally, one would be the Zorba’s platter (gyros, skewer of meat of your choice, pastisio or moussaka, Greek potatoes, broiled sausage, tzatziki sauce). For the second plate, I wanted the baked flounder, one of the specials that night, but they were out as of our 8:00pm dinner. So, in a sad attempt to balance our diets, we chose the vegetarian plate (spanakopita, falafel, hummus, dolmas, tzatziki sauce) for our second choice. Needless to say, we had quite the variety.

First up, a simple Greek salad to whet our appetites.

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Freshly grated feta, pitted kalamata olives… mmm mmm good.

Zorba’s Platter:

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We chose lamb as the meat of choice for the grilled skewer, and it was done to lightly charred outside,  medium-well juicy inside perfection.  The gyro meat at Zorba’s is always consistently excellent, well seasoned and tender, not too dry.  I always pick pastisio over moussaka due to personal preference (it’s like mac and cheese but with a much more interesting and complex flavor), and the version at Zorba’s isn’t half bad.  My least favorite thing on the plate are always the broiled sausage.  I usually try to see if a co-diner will sacrifice some stomach space for them.  The Greek potatoes are basically olive-oil/herb drenched potatoes baked til tender.  I still prefer the version at Niko Niko’s in Houston, but this satisfies the craving as well.

Vegetarian Plate:

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Let me just start off by saying that I love spanakopita.  I love spinach, raw and cooked, I love cheese, and I love pastry puffs.  The combination of the three in a dish is perfection!  Falafel reminds me of hush puppies, but with more exotic spice flavor.  I’ve never been much of a fan of dolmas, which is odd because I usually love things wrapped in some kind of leaf (tamales, zhongzi, and, as I recently discovered, little Vietnamese “sausages” in la lot leaves).  The limp grape leaves have this slightly bitter taste to them that I have never gotten accustomed to.  Hummus was fabulous as usual, I got an extra order of pita wedges just so I can wipe off every last smear off of the plate.

Then it was time for the highlight of the meal, the Ek Mek Kataifi for dessert.  The base of Ek Mek is pastry sheets chopped into thin strands (almost like vermicelli), drenched in honey, and topped with custard and whipped cream.  Heavenly!  At $44 for two large dinner plates, dessert, tax and tip (feeds 3 easily), it wasn’t a bad deal either.

Seeing as how I’ve already been to Zorba’s three times since the new year, I know I will be back.  Zorba’s will never be a super cheap, super casual, and super interesting people-watching spot like Niko Niko’s (after all, Montrose isn’t exactly Plano, but both have their upsides and downsides).  But I love the BYOB policy and the consistent quality.  Thanks Zorba’s for being a trusty favorite when the cook just doesn’t have the time for her own kitchen.

Rating: 4.5 / 5

Zorba’s Greek Cafe
1501 Preston Rd (northwest corner of Plano Pkwy & Preston)
Plano, TX 75093



Seven Courses of Beef at Huong Ly
February 23, 2007, 1:35 am
Filed under: DFW Restaurant Reviews

What’s better than beef for dinner?  Seven courses of beef, of course!  I’ve always seen the seven courses of beef advertised on banners outside of Vietnamese restaurants, and this past Wednesday, a group of five of us went to Huong Ly in the Richardson Chinatown to find out what it’s all about.

According to Wikipedia, Bo 7 Mon (or “Beef 7 Ways”) is traditional wedding fare in Vietnamese cuisine.  The idea is to create spring rolls with the various cooked beef items.  From some light web reading, it appears that Huong Ly’s version of the seven courses of beef falls right in line with the standard fare.

The first course of beef was actually a salad.  Thin strips of red onion, carrots, cabbage, mint, beef slices, and pickled tripe topped with ground peanut. Yep, I said tripe.  I’m not personally a big fan of tripe, so I ate around it but still got to sample the crunchy salad with the fish saucy, vinegary dressing.  An interesting way to whet your appetite.

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Course number two started the spring roll making madness.  The table soon filled up with a hot pot of boiling broth with slices of red onion, clear spring roll wrappers and bowls of hot water for softening the wrappers, a giant plate of veggies for your spring roll (mint, basil, sprouts, carrot strips, cucumber strips, and something that looked like banana but was starchy and hard), vermicelli noodles, two dipping sauces (regular fish sauce and Mam Nem, a fermented fish sauce which originated from Thailand), and the thin slices of beef to be boiled.

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Drop the beef slices in the boiling broth, soften your spring roll wrapper, fill wrapper with noodles and veggies of choice, add in cooked beef slices (should be done by the time you’re done softening the wrapper and piling on the veggies), roll up into a spring roll, and dip in your choice of either regular fish sauce or the more pungent fermented fish sauce.  It’s definitely a fun, hands-on experience. 

The next plate included the third, fourth, and fifth course. 

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So this is where “beef 7 ways” makes more sense than “7 courses of beef.”  These three different “sausages” are eaten the same way as the boiled beef in the first course, roll them up in the spring roll wrappers with veggies and dip in the fish sauce(s).  There was the plain “sausage,” chargrilled beef slices wrapped around ground beef, the fatty “sausage,” ground beef rolled in caul fat which gives it the shiny exterior, and ground beef wrapped in la lot leaves.  My favorite of the three were the ground beef in la lot leaves, the leaves gave them a distinctly herbal flavor.  I have always been a fan of things wrapped in leaves/husks, tamales, zhong zi, etc.  The fatty beef was a bit more juicy than the regular beef, but otherwise had similar flavors.

Two more courses to go and we were already stuffed!  The next course consisted of a crunchy sesame cracker with a beef “dip.”  You spoon the mixture of ground beef and clear cellophane noodles topped with mushy peas.

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Out of all the courses, this was my least favorite due to personal preference.  I’m just not a big fan of the texture of steamed ground meat.  And I thought the sesame cracker tasted stale.  But still an interesting dish, nonetheless.  The last course was ground beef congee (porridge) topped with lots of green onion, a soothing way to end our massive feast of beef.

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The Seven Courses of Beef is $11.95 per person at Huong Ly.  We actually ordered 4 portions for our party of 5 (3 boys in their mid-20’s with voracious appetites and 2 girls that can hold their own when it comes to eating) and all left so very full.  You do the math, it’s quite the deal.  The atmosphere at Huong Ly is like you would expect at a Chinatown restaurant, people definitely come for the food and not the decor.  Service was a bit slow.  They were probably a little busier than expected on a Wednesday night. 

I got this email the next day at work:

“Beef, it’s not what’s for dinner.  At least for tonight, because I feel like I have a beef hangover.”

It’s like the State Fair but with beef instead of deep fried goodies.  And just like the State Fair, Beef 7 Ways is something you just have to try at least once.

Rating: 3.5 / 5

Huong Ly
400 N. Greenville Ave #20
Richardson, TX 75081



Sushi and Sake at Sushi Sake
February 20, 2007, 2:11 pm
Filed under: DFW Restaurant Reviews

I was not raised to be a raw food person. Every part of my childhood upbringing was very much assimilated to western culture except for this one little area. Like most Chinese parents, my parents did not eat raw meat (heck, most Chinese people don’t even like salad because the veggies are uncooked). I say “did” because I think my mom has finally learned to like sushi after a two-month stay in Hawaii. My dad’s another story.

I never even had a steak any less cooked than “well done” until high school. Even now I never order steak any less cooked than medium. Naturally, the idea of sushi didn’t appeal to me. When I had a long layover in the Tokyo airport, I opted for the cooked udon noodles over the sushi bar (not that airport sushi would be spectacular, but I was in Japan!) Before moving to Dallas after graduating college, my only experience with sushi was limited to the California roll.

On the surface, it doesn’t make sense that I would start experimenting with sushi in a non-coastal city like Dallas. But the town likes to be trendy and people are becoming more health-conscious, so sushi restaurants are everywhere (there are 16 within a 5-mile radius of my semi-suburban apartment). I started eating sushi. First, it was all the cooked stuff, shrimp tempura, eel, soft shelled crab. Then I ventured into a couple of “raw” items that sounded familiar, tuna and salmon, starting with rolls, then slowly venturing into nigiri sushi, then sashimi (only for smoked salmon). I stayed in my comfort zone of those two “raw” items and cooked items for a long time, reasoning that Dallas is a landlocked city and I didn’t want to have to call in work the next day with a case of “I had some bad sushi last night.”

Then I was offered a belated Valentine’s dinner at Sushi Sake, the best and freshest sushi restaurant in Dallas by popular voteof Dallas chowhounds. Now I had no excuses. Unless I was planning on traveling to Japan soon (which sadly my budget can’t handle right now), now was the time to venture out of the comfort zone.

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Sushi Sake is a beautifully modern restaurant in an unexpectedly location in Richardson (between large office buildings in an area that has mostly chains unless you venture out to Chinatown or the Indian markets a couple of miles away). The small place was packed at 8:00pm on a Saturday night. We wanted sushi bar seating, but opted for first available when we saw the wait (ended up being only 20 minutes but the hostess had quoted longer). We sat at a community table, adjacent to a party of three. At first I was taken aback by the seating arrangement, but I soon adjusted and started enjoying the intimate environment.

We opted for one of the cheaper sakes on the sake list (not being familiar with sake at all) and ordered the smoked squid with vegetables as an appetizer.

Sake:

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Smoked Squid Appetizer:

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The smoked squid was tossed with a ginger vinaigrette and small chunks of seaweed. The chewy texture of the squid was not rubbery, but rather like an al dente pasta. The dressing gave it a semi-sweet flavor that I really enjoyed.

Then came our a la carte sushi order. Gizzard shad (one of the specials of the night, I was fearing the worst when my companion ordered this without any idea to what it is), smoked salmon, yellowtail, flying fish roe, eel roll, and spider roll.

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It was a combination of old favorites and new adventures, but I loved all of it. The gizzard shad (I actually had horrendous images of turkey gizzard when I saw this on the menu) was very fresh and had an interesting but not too fishy flavor. It was my first time to try yellowtail, I have to say the flavor wasn’t anything exciting for my palate. But that’s just personal taste. The flying fish roe was fun and delicious, salty little crunchy bubbles that burst when you bit into it, very fitting for people like me who love to pop the bubbles on bubble wrap. The eel roll and spider roll were both excellent, fresh ingredients, didn’t fall apart easily, and the eel and crab were seasoned just right (the batter on the soft shell crab was some of the lightest but crunchiest I’ve ever had). The highlight of the night was an old favorite, smoked salmon, so fresh that it practically melted in your mouth. When I go back (and I definitely will be), I’ll be ordering the smoked salmon sashimi and fighting my companion for every bite.

Our waitress was a bit terse with us but I think partly because it was a very busy night. I would love to return to Sushi Sake with a seat at the sushi bar. But it’s not a trip I’ll be making too often because it isn’t exactly cheap. The total for sake, appetizer, and the few a la carte orders was $55 including tax and tip. From my limited experience with sushi in Dallas so far, Sushi Sake is definitely there at the top for quality and freshness.

Rating: 4.5 / 5

Sushi Sake
2150 N. Collins Blvd
Richardson, TX 75082



Tex-Mex Gem (Mena’s Tex-Mex Grill)
February 17, 2007, 11:54 am
Filed under: DFW Restaurant Reviews

A few posts back, I whined about the lack of good restaurants in northern Carrollton.  There was a suggestion for Mena’s Tex-Mex Grill (Trinity Mills at Marsh) in the comments, which is actually closer to where I live now.  Either way, I have yet to find a Tex-Mex restaurant that I really enjoy in the area, so I decided to give Mena’s a shot.

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Mena’s is located in the old Tom Thumb shopping center and was about half full at 7:30pm on a Thursday night.  The decor is festive and not tacky:  rustic wooden chairs, warm yellow walls, tile floors with handpainted Mexican tile in-lays, etc.  A sign by the hostess podium advertises the daily specials, which for our visit was grilled ribeye and enchiladas suizas.

Upon seating, we were immediately presented with greaseless, thin, and crunchy tortilla chips with fresh and spicy salsa.  Mena’s salsa ranks up there as one of my favorite non-smoky salsas, the freshness of the cilantro and tomatoes combined with the bite of the finely chopped jalapenos made for a pleasant meal starter.  So far so good.

For dinner, I went with brisket tacos ($8.95) and my companion chose the grilled ribeye, one of the daily specials ($12.95).

Brisket Tacos:

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The menu describes these as chipotle brisket tacos, but the flavor of the chipotle sauce wasn’t obvious.  The brisket was tender and juicy and the grilled onions and bell peppers made for a pleasant texture contrast in each bite.  Overall, a solid brisket taco, but not as good as my favorites from Luna de Noche.  My favorite item off of this plate is actually the bean soup, flavored with smokey chunks of bacon and ham, similar to the beans from Carboncito’s in Playa del Carmen.  I also enjoyed the fresh and crisp avocado salad (no filler shredded iceberg here) and the moist Mexican rice.

Grilled Ribeye Special:

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The grilled ribeye is a huge dish.  Next time we’ll probably be splitting this since it is more than enough to feed two people.  The huge steak came sizzling and topped with cheese, grilled onions, bell peppers, and mushrooms.  Then there are the standard toppers, pico de gallo, guacamole, and lettuce.  Then there’s the rice, bean soup, and tortillas.  It was a huge spread, my companion only managed to polish off about half of it.  The steak was tender and cooked to medium doneness as requested.  In my opinion it could’ve used a squeeze of lime, either in the marinade or just before the toppers were placed on.  A good steak, nonetheless.

I wish I had room to try the flan or the sopapilla, but we were both stuffed.  The service at Mena’s is extra attentive and we’ll definitely be back.  If you live in the area (Carrollton/far north Dallas), I’d definitely give the place a try.

Rating: 4 / 5

Mena’s Tex-Mex Grill
2810 E. Trinity Mills Rd
Carrollton, TX 75006