Dallas Observer 2009 Best of Dallas® Food List: What do You Think?

Please don't sue me for using your cover art.
Please don’t sue me for using your cover art.

I’m stuck at home in my little glass house. I see a few pebbles on the floor and I think I will toss them.

I just scanned through the Dallas Observer’s 2009 Best of Dallas® Food list. It reminds me of that Who song. What is it, Kirk? Something about the new boss and the old boss? YAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAH! Bomp, bomp, bomp. YAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAH!

Dave Fairies, I have a quick question: Does the Observer repeat “Bests” if, when the next year rolls around, no one else  fills the category as “Better®?” (That’s mine, dude.)  This is a serious question and I ask it because I have to deal with the beast of ‘Bests” and understand the difficulty at uncovering them. So, Mr. Fairies, do you roll over “Bests” from year to year by moving them into different categories or because they are the “Best” of their original category? Let’s go through the list together and see. Jump with me. It’s not far.

Cindi’s New York Deli: 2008 Best Breakfast; 2009 Best Chicken and Dumplings

Fogo de Chao: 2008 Best Churrascaria; 2009 Best Meaty Experience

Yumi to Go: 2008 Best Home Delivery; 2009 Best Bird’s Eye View (seriously?)

Jimmy’s Food Store: 2008 Best Spicy Sausage Sandwich; 2009 Best Italian Grocery (me=guilty)

Royal Thai: 2008 Best Thai Restaurant; 2009 Best Thai Restaurant (Ding! Could answer my question)

Best Seafood: 2008 Fish City Grill; 2009 Dallas Seafood Market (seriously?)

Alligator Café: 2008 Best Cajun Restaurant; 2009 Best Cajun Restaurant (Ding! Ding! Could answer my question.)

Afghan Grill: 2008 Best Middle Eastern Restaurant; 2009 Best Middle Eastern Restaurant (Ding! Ding! Ding! That’s three which officially makes anything a Trend. One more match makes it Truth.)

Garden Café: 2008  Best Local Food Movement Restaurant; 2009 Best Homegrown Experience

Roti Grill: 2008 Best Fast-Casual Indian Restaurant; 2009 Best Indian Food (Yow. Zah.)

Mai’s Vietnamese Restaurant: 2008 Best Vietnamese Restaurant; 2009 Best Vietnamese Restaurant  DING, DING, DING! Ding! TRUTH!

Fair enough, Fairies!  I commend your consistency. I will now pick up my guitar and play.

(But Sprinkles? Really? That is sooo D Magazine.)


  • Kirk

    “Won’t Get Fooled Again,” Nancy.

  • Donna

    Roti Grill, LOL.

  • Publiless

    He can’t have eaten at many Vietnamese, Thai, or Indian restaurants, if he thinks Mai’s, Royal Thai, and Roti Grill are the best in Dallas.

  • DallasChocolateLover


  • Jane

    How many people from Lakewood and Lower Greenville greased the palms to get so many of their neighborhood haunts mentioned?


    Best seafood..please.Probably has an Observer dispenser outside the restaurant

  • kathie

    This made me laugh more than anything. Who reads the Observer anyway.

  • gigi

    I stopped reading the Observer when it became so inundated with raunchy ads. Between Savage Love, a 10 year old looking Asian prostitute and white trash strippers bent over like they dropped a one dollar bill, I have just passed it by and go for Paper City and the Voice at the paper stands.

  • Helen Keller

    Enjoy the Observer and love Lee Harvey’s burgers, etc. but when , a couple years back, LH was deemed by the Obeserver as ‘best onion rings’, I skipped any ‘best of’ lists. (capped by pre-Grape ‘Best Burger’ per Tx Monthly). Because clearly, despite LH having killer burgers and terrific bar food…and the rings being predictably tasty, LH rings are clearly standard frozen pre-fabs dropped into the fryer. Nothing wrong with that but ‘Best’?

  • Michael Davis

    Jason’s Deli- best casual food?

  • Amy B

    God, this is SO funny!! I was reading this last night w/ my husband- and we were trying to figure out these AWFUL picks! Some of them are ok, but Royal Thai & Roti Grill- BLEH!

    gigi- don’t forget the american apparel ad on the back page….

  • Rawlins con un poco de cumin

    PS re: BS to D.O.(et al): Enough with the inevitable annointed Fuel City ‘Best’ Tacos’ / ‘best cheap’ tacos, etc. Nothing against FC…fine fare…. but: let’s get a Mexican gripe reality grip on Big D realty here: This city has whole (as in enormous)parts that are dominated solely by genuine Mexican anything feeding the hundreds of thousands of Mexicans living here….and no few wise fleshy starving Anglos like me.

    C’mon: You want cheap thrill tacos….I could name off the top of my head dozens of down for the count tacos that are fresher than a drunk sailor. My favorite is STILL Northwest Dallas (Webb’s Chapel north of Lombardy) $1 tacos from heaven at <b<‘Tacos to Go’ made by Mauro or Omar. Then there’s fare all along Harry Hines. Not a bad taco amonst ‘em. Pleasant Grove along Lake June has 175 thousand handmade options while any blind seeker of truth can find cheap-thrill tacos all over (especially north) Oak Cliff (look on Jefferson and Davis streets) and north into West Dallas. Etc., Etc……

  • Where’s Vincent’s?

  • I actually like Roti Grill (guilty)… but for comfort food lunches and quick takeout in my neighborhood only, not for a great Indian restaurant experience. I’m also guilty of never driving farther north than NorthPark, so therefore never making it to what I hear are some truly fantastic Indian restaurants in the ‘burbs. Will fix that one of these days.

    The point I wanted to make when I logged on was that in the last town I lived in, I have distinct memories every year when it was voting time for the alt-weekly’s “Best Of” issue, and you couldn’t order drinks anywhere without filling out ten forms voting for the establishment, or you got a free breakfast burrito if you filled out the form voting for it as best burrito place. See where I’m going with this? I always take these things with a grain of salt.

  • Kathie G.

    I used to eat at Vincent’s on northwest highway. everything stuffed with Ritz crackers and butter. Oh you just made me hungry.

  • Twinwillow

    Is this the “top ten” list from David Letterman’s show? It must be because, it’s hilarious!

  • LeeDog

    Uh… his last name is spelled Faries, not Fairies.