This tiny Deep Ellum taqueria has a cult following, and for good reason. It boasts a menu created by chef Regino Rojas that is as inventive as it is delicious. Corn tortillas are made fresh to order and come stuffed with everything from braised Wagyu beef tongue to octopus carnitas, Thai curry frog legs, and even lobster tail. But tacos aren't the only things to come for. In the back of the lounge is a hidden 14-seat dining cove (the Purepecha Room) where guests are treated to an eight-course modern Michoacan-style feast for around $100. If that's out of your range, also consider hitting this place for the all-you-can-eat Sunday brunch buffet. For $35 per person, you can indulge in 5 various kinds of guisados (stews), Menudo, chilaquiles, quesadillas and ceviches plus Mexican spiced coffee and agua fresca. Oh, and did we mention that it's open until 2 a.m. on weekends?
Recommended for Deep Ellum's Best Restaurants because: Revolver Taco Lounge was named one of Dallas' best restaurants.
Ilene's expert tip: Try to stop by for Pinche Taco Tuesday when you can snag $2 al pastor tacos and $5 house margaritas.
The sandwich artists at this funky mom and pop sandwich shop crank out some of the finest things between sliced bread, or in this case-- grilled sourdough, baguettes and buns. The rotating menu of "sammiches" includes everything from sinfully delicious Cubans and shaved rib-eyes to a veggie Bahn mi (BunMe) and melt-in-your-mouth slow-roasted pork. Equally epic are Uber's hand-cut fries with house-made habanero ranch. There's also a stellar selection of craft and regional brews to wash it all down with. Better still, Uncle Ubers hosts an array of nightly events, ranging from live music to trivia nights.
Recommended for Deep Ellum's Best Restaurants because: Uncle Uber's sammies are so sensational that it received the Best Sandwich Shop award by the Dallas Observer.
Ilene's expert tip: Score double burgers and fries for only $6 on Tuesdays after 4 p.m.
This jovial neighborhood watering hole is not only the perfect place to wet your whistle with a selection of more than 65 varieties of bottled and tapped brews, but it's also the place to tuck into some excellent pub grub. The reasonably priced menu features a massive selection of appetizers, as well as everything from pizzas, pasta, and burgers to steaks and fish. Standouts include Rudolph's lucky dog with chili, grilled onions and cheese, as well as the dancing tuna sandwich with cilantro-chile glazed grilled tuna. The place really packs a house on weekends when local musicians like Josh Hendrick and Joe Tucker put on an awesome show.
Recommended for Deep Ellum's Best Restaurants because: St. Pete's is a Deep Ellum icon, famous for its outstanding beer selection and excellent pub grub.
Ilene's expert tip: St. Pete's has happy hour Mon-Fri from 4-7 p.m. and live music on Friday and Saturday nights.
If you're looking for patties with personality and a funky ambiance to boot, then twist your way over to this epic burger mecca where you can order burgers made with everything from black Angus beef, poultry and black beans to exotic wild game like kangaroo, ostrich and camel. You can also customize your burger even more with a myriad of home-made condiments and toppings, ranging from potato chips and beer-sautéed onions to guacamole and peanut butter. Or go with Guy Fieri's fave-- the half-pound Western Burger with house-made barbecue sauce, pepper Jack cheese, bacon, fried onion strings and jalapenos. Wash it all down with one of the homemade root beers. Or better yet, grab a seat on the rooftop patio and indulge in a boozy milkshake with Frangelico and chocolate vodka.
Recommended for Deep Ellum's Best Restaurants because: Twisted Root Burgers are so tasty that the place has a cult following.
Ilene's expert tip: Happy Hour specials include $1 off beer and cocktails, Mon-Fri from 2:07 to 6:07 p.m.
When they say this Deep Ellum ramen spot is hot, they mean it. Not only is it popular, but it's also famous for serving some of the spiciest ramen in town. Of course, with a name like Oni (which means demon in Japanese), it's to be expected. For a perfect example, look no further than the Oni Reaper, one of the restaurant's specialty ramens made with a miso base and flavored with a combustible combination of ghost, scorpion, and Carolina Reaper peppers. No worries, not everything is designed to burn a hole through your intestines. The menu also features an assortment of milder options to choose from, including the ultra-rich Kyushu Tonkotsu with pork belly, vegetables, red ginger, black garlic oil and egg. Not into ramen? Try the Takoyaki (fried octopus balls) topped with tonkatsu, mayo and tuna flakes.
This Deep Ellum spot has quickly made a name for itself thanks to its cutting-edge beverage program where mixologists employ all sorts of fancy equipment (think: centrifuges and roto-vaporizers) in the making of mixed drinks. Along with creative libations, like the wild hare (milk-washed carrot gin, ruby port, cinnamon, ginger and cumin tincture), HIDE cranks out fantastic food options, ranging from charcuterie and toasts topped with the likes of chorizo and pimento cheese to ahi poke tacos, gyro tartines, Akaushi beef cheeseburgers and steak frites. And don't get us started on the all-day weekend brunch.
Recommended for Deep Ellum's Best Restaurants because: HIDE is where to go when you want to eat, drink and get the party started.
Ilene's expert tip: HIDE offers an awesome Happy Hour (Sunday-Friday from 5 to 7 p.m.) with signature cocktails for $6-$8 and $5 bar bites. High-end shots are on offer for $5 every Tuesday. Check the website for more special events.
There's always something pleasing to look at and spectacular to devour at this upscale modern American cafe tucked away in the historic Boyd Hotel building. Inside the sleek environs-- replete with several cozy dining areas, you'll find a seasonally composed menu by owner/chef Tracy Miller. Here, diners can choose from a seven-course, prix-fixe tasting menu-- or order à la carte options that range from pan-seared lobster cakes with lemon dill cream to herb crusted lamb shanks and gourmet burgers. While Local serves wine and beer only, creative cocktails like the prosecco mojito and sake pear martini more than make up for the lack of spirits. The signature "chocolate composed" dessert of chocolate soufflé, brownie cookies and a mini Ovaltine malt makes for an ideal finish.
Recommended for Deep Ellum's Best Restaurants because: Local is one of the most romantic places in Deep Ellum for a date night.
Ilene's expert tip: Local provides complimentary parking in the lot adjacent to Rudolph's Meat Market on the west side of the restaurant.
The wood-fired, thin-crust pizzas have earned this Neapolitan-certified pizza joint a cult following that even includes Guy Fieri, host of The Food Network's "Diners, Drive-Ins, and Dives." The dough is made from "OO" flour imported from Italy, the sauce is made from hand-crushed San Marzano tomatoes, and the mozzarella is pulled fresh in-house daily. The 14" pies range from a traditional Margherita to more inventive picks, like the Honey Bastard with mozzarella, hot soppressata, bacon marmalade and habanero honey or the PBR with pepperoni, house-smoked brisket, roasted onions, candied jalapeños, mozzarella and BBQ sauce. In addition to pizzas, you can dig into everything from snacks and salads to sandwiches and hand-crafted pasta. End the meal with zeppoles (fried Italian doughnuts) or a s'mores calzone.
Recommended for Deep Ellum's Best Restaurants because: Cane Rosso's pizzas are said to be some of the best in the country.
Ilene's expert tip: Cane Rosso also serves weekend brunch. Take note that Mon-Thurs from 3-6 p.m. you can score $2 off appetizers and house cocktails, $5 house wines, $3 Miller Lite drafts and $7-$9 select pizzas.
Spicing up Deep Ellum's ever-expanding restaurant scene is this bustling Lebanese eatery that turns out a modern spin on the country's classic cuisine. Named after the Middle Eastern spice blend, Zatar delivers a roll-call of sharable crowd-pleasers, ranging from the more familiar baba ganoush and falafel to tasty specialties like fish chips (beer battered whole smelts) and moujadara croquettes, deep-fried balls of lentils and rice. You can also get seriously stuck into flatbreads, brochettes, burgers and roasted fish. The highlight? Everything. Just make sure you leave room for dessert, the chocolate Halawa cake is something else. Ditto for the exotic cocktails. Added bonus: a covered hookah patio and live music on weekends.
Recommended for Deep Ellum's Best Restaurants because: For a Middle Eastern feast of dishes that are as interesting as they are delicious, Zatar is a winner.
Ilene's expert tip: Brunch is served on Sundays from 11:30 a.m. until 2:30 p.m. Follow on Facebook to find out about drink specials and events.
Dallas is filled with barbecue joints, but none can compare with the smoky goodness coming out of this rustic barbecue haven. Pecan Lodge's cue is so good that Texas Monthly named it one of the top BBQ joints in the state, and Food Network's Guy Fieri featured it on Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives. Here, people line up daily just to get their fix of house-made sausages, mesquite smoked brisket and mouthwatering ribs. Along with epic barbecue, you can also sink your teeth into everything from southern fried chicken and mac n' cheese to a signature dish called the "hot mess" which consists of a massive sweet potato stuffed with southwestern seasoned brisket and chipotle cream cheese. Save room for Aunt Polly's banana pudding--your taste buds will thank you for it.
Recommended for Deep Ellum's Best Restaurants because: Pecan Lodge smokes up the best barbecue in Dallas.
Ilene's expert tip: Arrive here early because the place only stays open until the day's supply sells out.