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Food Writers Weigh In on Their Best Meals of 2013

As 2013 draws to a close, we're surveying friends of Eater about the year in dining. Here now, local food writers weigh in on the best meals they enjoyed in 2013 (do feel free to weigh in with your own thoughts via the comments).
Belly and Trumpet: The site of many memorable meals this year. [Photo: Stephen Masker/EDFW]

Q: What was the single best meal of 2013?

Teresa Gubbins, CultureMap: "CultureMap Dallas anniversary party starring Belly & Trumpet, Slow Bone, Boulevardier, Lockhart Smokehouse, Meso Maya, East Hampton Sandwich Co., Cook Hall, Stampede 66, Zoli's NY Pizza Tavern, and BreadWinners. So many of those grazing events are perfunctory, and obviously I'm biased, but everyone who went said it was an amazing spread."

José Ralat-Maldonado, The Taco Trail: "I'm split. My first visit to El Come Taco, the new DF-style taqueria on Fitzhugh where I ordered one of everything, including off-menu items with house-made salsas, was a stunner. Cabeza, pastor, suadero, loganiza, so much to love. Then there's my first meal at the re-named El Taco del Rincon de Villa on Park Lane and Greenville Avenue. Handmade tortillas and true carnitas, barbacoa de borrego (lamb), chicken tinga that is smoky and juicy, and rajas con queso edible fireworks. "

Kevin Gray, Dallas editor of UrbanDaddy: "Chef Brian Zenner is doing some impressive things in the Belly & Trumpet kitchen, but his Pacific Northwest dinner in November was especially memorable, with six courses of caviar, black truffles and sablefish."

Mike Hiller, Escape Hatch Dallas: "A recent tasting menu at Spoon that featured truffles, brown butter and yuzu, all in the same dish."

Steven Doyle, CraveDFW: "2013 brought some memorable meals. If I must choose a single favorite it might be the evening I tasted most of the new menu items at Belly and Trumpet. I loved the whole branzino, and the foie terrine made my toes curl. Also, I will never get enough of the Waygu Spinalis at SER, garnished with foie gras 'bon bons'."

foodbitch, blogger: "Just shy of 2013, on 12.12.12 I was invited to enjoy twelve courses at Abacus. That was a meal I'll always remember."

Whitney Filloon, Eater Dallas: "All my meals at Belly & Trumpet were pretty stunning, particularly a pork belly dish with kimchi and chicharron that was on the opening menu, as well as a scallop crudo I had sometime later. Also every time I went to Royal China and ate the henan lu-rou lamian (hand-pulled noodles with pork belly and mushroom sauce) and the soup dumplings, which was um... a lot of times."