I can’t wait to go back to the most improbable dining venue in Dallas, the Thomas Avenue Beverage Company. Since the return of its former chef Michael Smith, a veteran of the city’s much-lauded Green Room, last November, this sports bar and restaurant in the prosperous uptown area has scaled new heights. I loved my appetizer of venison tenderloin cured in cumin and coriander. And the warm blue-cheese-and-bacon dressing on a salad of grilled Boston lettuce was so good I wanted to lap it right off the plate. Thank goodness my friend offered to share his entrée, a gorgeous filet of sea bass in a creamy oyster stew—otherwise I would have had to kill him. One warning: The noise in the room is earsplitting, but the food is so good you’ll want to shout.