Beachfront property? Sorry, no. But one thing Dallas does have is hotel sky-high dining. Ring-bearing suitors like the spinning Antares in the Hilton Tower. Foodies favor Nana at the Anatole. But who goes to Chaparral at the Adams Mark Hotel? Locals not so much—and that’s part of the magic. It’s like you’ve entered some foreign urban village.
The view at 38 floors up is a stunner: downtown skyline on one side and I-75 on the other, the proverbial pulsing vein of light. Gazing down at those puny ants, it’s fun to play the role of swaggering oil baron, if only for a night. Which means, yes, steak, whether a juicy 22-ounce, bone-in ribeye or a tuna steak, cooked as rare and red as beef.
Nearly everything about the meal felt on top of the world: rustic breads served warm. Crisp raw vegetables, cut fancy to show the knife skills, and served on ice. A crab cake appetizer, so puffed up with authentic, delicious crab—what filler?—that it nearly burst through its crunchy crust. Bright green asparagus drizzled with butter, the spears trimmed as precisely as an English garden. A lemon-pistachio cake fashioned into a cylinder with laser-sharp edges and a powdery dusting of confectioner’s sugar.
Service, while attentive, lacked the fine polish of the stemware, but the semi-casual attitude and uniforms ended up being a bit of a relief. The air does get thin up there after a while. 400 Olive St. 214-777-6539. $$-$$$.
Update: The Chaparral Club has closed.