Texas Monthly adds and updates approximately sixty restaurant listings to our Dining Guide each month. There’s limited space in the print issue, but the entire searchable guide to the best of Texas cuisine is at your fingertips online!
Below are a few highlights from the new restaurants reviewed in our May 2022 issue. Click “More Info” for further detail on each restaurant:
Ubiquitous chef Tim Love refashioned a derelict building in the Stockyards from which to roll out his stylish, upbeat take on Mexican fare, starting with a showy table-side preparation of queso, which we like to customize with avocado, grilled shrimp, and lime. Chile-pepita hummus with veggie crudités and grilled king crab legs slathered in cilantro-orange-chipotle butter warrant a return, as does the shareable porterhouse with grilled onion, assorted salsas, and queso panela quesadillas. A beef short rib filling takes birria tacos up a notch, while venison gives fajitas new relevance. The watermelon margarita and ranch water with muddled jalapeño are definitely worth a try.
Tex-Mex | ⭑⭑⭑ | $$$$ | More Info
Inspired by “cherished moments” at the family table, the carefully curated menu by chef Brandi Key (recently of Alice Blue) raises the bar for comforting American classics. In a warmly lit space perched on the green at City Centre, we relished our deviled eggs, creamy and tart with mustard and crunchy with bacon. The short ribs (no fat, no gristle) were a carnivore’s dream, braised for 24 hours and served with pillowy gnocchi. Oysters Rockefeller took a Southern turn with a cornbread crumble, and the roasted cauliflower arrived dusted in French curry and sprinkled with golden raisins, dried cherries, and pistachios.
American | ⭑⭑⭑ | $$ | More Info
Should you still be missing Gwendolyn, chef Michael Sohocki’s elegant River Walk spot, his new venue demonstrates the same dedication to craft and beautifully plated food. Local and seasonal flavors are carryovers, while the larger, more casual dining area offers room to spread out. Our delightful meal brought Spanish-style albóndigas in an earthy tomato sauce, garnished with basil leaves and shavings of a pecan-smoked cow’s milk cheese from River Whey Creamery, in Schertz. On the opposite end of the earthiness spectrum was a grilled redfish filet with a lovely garnish of flash-fried spinach and grilled lemon.
American | ⭑⭑⭑⭑ | $$$ | More Info
Wood-fired pizzas, handmade pasta, and regional Italian dishes anchor the menu at this casual restaurant in Oak Lawn. The Carne pizza wowed us with its chewy crust lavished with crumbled pork sausage, crisp bacon, and generous folds of prosciutto. The creamy polenta of the day (it’s the ragù that
rotates) made a comforting main dish, swirled with Parmesan and topped with a braised pork sauce. Roasted brussels sprouts were among the best we’ve had: honey-glazed for a caramelized crust and served with a tangy goat
cheese sauce. Seared octopus topped with horseradish aioli came with a warm salad of fingerling potatoes flecked with sliced almonds and thin asparagus.
Italian | ⭑⭑⭑ | $$ | More Info
El Pollo Tocayo
From Lanny Lancarte’s new Fantasma (“Ghost”) Kitchens comes a takeout concept featuring fried and wood-smoked chicken, both equally winning. The fried bird boasts a crispy buttermilk-batter jacket, while the cherrywood-roasted fowl sports a burnished exterior; both are served with red vinegar salsa and piquant escabeche. Stealing the show on the side are the smashed fingerling potatoes topped with queso fresco and salsa brava,
blackened green beans tossed in pesto, and an arugula salad with goat cheese and dried cherries. Lanny’s beloved churros with warm chocolate are the dessert of choice, and the thoughtfully designed cocktail kits—complete with
nugget ice—rate special attention.
Mexican | ⭑⭑⭑ | $$ | More Info
Our reviews are written by critics who live in the cities and regions they cover. They remain anonymous to ensure that they receive no special treatment. The magazine pays for all meals and accepts no advertising or other consideration in exchange for a listing. Comments? Write us.