Archive for August, 2012|Monthly archive page

HTF in DFW – Road Trip #11

In Honky Tonk/ Food on 08/16/2012 at 6:57 pm

I have never considered Dallas (and by proxy Fort Worth) to be part of Texas.  But I’ve also never really given this area a chance so HonkyTonkFoodie and friends made the trek.  Dallas on Friday, Fort Worth Saturday.  Here was the outcome.

Gilley’s was the first stop.


Although no longer a honky tonk (awww), it has rich history and a bar.  We were the only people in the Jack Daniel’s Saloon, so we ordered beer, took a picture with the mechanical bull from ‘Urban Cowboy‘ and wandered around. Although its big stage is now used for rock shows (i.e. Jack Black & Tenacious D, Marilyn Manson), it is easy to image boots, teased hair and Rockie-clad buckle bunnies. It felt a little bit like being in an abandoned house full of memories. There are side rooms which are rentable, but I’m not sure where these were.

From there, we hopped in a cab and headed to dine at Angry Dog. Before we go any further, know ‘Angry’ means spicy. This place was crammed with tables and most of them were full.


Everything came on a bun.  Hot dogs, hamburgers and tuna steak were had, all with positive reviews.  I ordered The Spiedies (pronounced Speedeez) because I couldn’t figure out from the menu what it was. Kind of like pot roast on a roll, sans gravy. A filling flavor with not too much fat. Could have used some horseradish.

This place had a surprisingly nice bathroom.

Adair’s Saloon was less than a block away, so we meandered down. A good setup, with band to the left of the front door, long bar further down to the right, shuffleboard in the back.


It was at this point we realized people in the area go out (much) later so it was pretty slow. Unfortunately so few people meant the overwhelming smell of urinal cakes had no blockade. We drank down a beer then wandered over to Elm Street, two blocks away. The whole street was lined with bars, similar to Sixth Street in Austin.  We briefly stopped at a swanky place with $1 champagne, then made our way to Black Swan Saloon.

People were inside, which was a welcome sight. As with the other Dallas places, the inside of the place was long and skinny, with a nice outside patio out back. As the inside got more crowded, I retired to the picnic tables and spent the rest of the evening there. I only had a sip of an infused vodka drink but it was delicious and left my lips tingly burning for several minutes afterward. Special thanks to Mark and Patrick for putting up with my sassy mood.

Back to the hotel, slept until 11:30 the next morning. Hurray for air conditioning, comfy bed and patient bladder!

Fell on my butt on the way to lunch, consoled myself with nachos.

We then loaded up, navigated construction and landed at Billy Bob’s Texas, the BIGGEST HONKY TONK IN THE WORLD. There are many things to see here, just note they close for an hour from 5-6 to sound check for that night’s concert. While I didn’t get to see everything, here are the highlights:

– a big ass belt buckle


– a chandelier that is both country AND disco (possibly a tad rock and roll)


– further evidence Reba McEntire is a total badass


– proof Ray Benson has gigantic feet


We snacked at the little cafe inside. My chicken and dumplings were good but definitely needed hot sauce. Fried pickles were the shining star, note these were whole spears, not chips. Fried green tomatoes were the subject of confusion in the kitchen and ultimately fried in the same batter as the pickles. They were also a smidgen on the small side.

Cupid shuffling occurred.

After the PA system announced our departure, a short walk took us to White Elephant Saloon. Which felt like coming home. For the first time the whole trip, we found a place serving Miller 64s. Hurray! Two sets of bathrooms, band stage under the stairs, lots and lots of little white elephants


and even an entertaining ceiling, featuring hats of prominent people from the area.


We played much pool and a little bit of shuffleboard. A chill place comfortable for tourists and locals. We absorbed Michael into the evening’s activities, cheers!

Next door is Love Shack, a hamburger, etc place which shares an owner with White Elephant. This is handy because you can order food from your waitress (thanks Nicole!) and it comes from the deliciousness next door. What you need to know is to order the Dirty Classic, which is a chicken sandwich topped with wild boar bacon and a quail egg. Oooooh yeah.

Great times! Fort Worth is more familiar to HTF but both places were an experience.

THANK YOU to everyone who came (you rock), with double nods to A.S. for driving and A.R. for being the official tourist aka photographer of HTF.

As-if-they-weren’t-freakish-enough FACT: Catfish are the only animals that have an odd number of whiskers.


Dallas Dining Advice from a Good Lookin’ Bar Man

In Food on 08/12/2012 at 6:50 pm

While I work on the posting about our trip to Dallas and Fort Worth, here is dining advice as procured from Gabe Sanchez at Black Swan Saloon.  We haven’t been to these places yet but if his restaurant recommendations are anything like his infused drinks, you are in good hands. Listed by Dallas Neighborhood, Sub-Categoried by Joint Name and Food Style.

Bishop Arts has Smoke – BBQ, Chicken Scratch – Fried Chicken, Lockhart Smokehouse – BBQ

Deep Ellum has Pepe & Mito’s – Tex-Mex

Uptown has Manny’s Uptown – Tex-Mex, Yutaka – Sushi

Highland Park has Bubba’s Cooks Country – Fried Chicken

Oak Lawn has Maple & Motor – Burgers

Henderson Avenue has The Porch – Burgers, Tei Tei Robata Bar– Sushi

Go try them and let me know!

Trivia answer to a question you didn’t know you had: The ‘ZIP’ in ZIP Code stands for Zone Improvement Plan.