Now that 2016 will officially come to an end this weekend, it’s time to look back at the biggest stories to come out of Dallas’ dining scene in the last year. It may not have been as massive as the one that preceded it, but 2016 was an incredible year for the city’s dining scene, especially in terms of how it is viewed on a national scale.
Judging by this year’s 10 most popular posts, Dallasites were obsessed with Whataburger’s support of the Dallas Cowboys, a smashable chocolate piñata, and the arrival of Japanese supermarket Mitsuwa Marketplace.
You can pretty much always count on Whataburger’s Twitter feed to be a social media goldmine, but the chain’s support of the Dallas Cowboys with a sick burn was definitely a highlight. Heim Barbecue’s offer of free barbecue for life to Rougned Odor stirred similar excitement, as did the arrival of The Halal Guys.
For whatever reason, folks in Dallas really love the idea of smashing open a giant chocolate egg to reveal a bounty of treats inside. This dessert quickly went viral, since inspiring its own website and plenty of YouTube videos of people cracking open that piñata.
Dallas has a bounty of international grocery stores, but next year’s arrival of Japan’s Mitsuwa Marketplace may be one of the most exciting openings of 2017. Even if you’re not much of a home cook, Mitsuwa’s food court will bring ramen and super-popular tempura bowl spot Kaneko Hannosuke, known for inspiring lengthy lines at the original Tokyo outpost.
The Halal Guys brought its classic chicken, rice, and white sauce to Dallas this year, and people were seriously excited. In the first few weeks after its opening, folks happily stood in line for upwards of an hour to score their first falafel platters. Considering that a second location will soon open in Richardson, it’s clear that this is one import that’s here to stay.
After becoming an instant hero with the punch heard ‘round the world, Rougned Odor scored a prize that us normal people could only dream of. Fortunately, there’s going to be plenty of Heim’s brisket and burnt ends to go around in 2017.
A bizarre story that’s circulated long before the internet ever existed, the Neiman Marcus cookie hoax is one of those urban legends that we’ve all heard of. Unfortunately, though, the story of a woman paying $250 for a chocolate chip cookie recipe is completely untrue.
Vegan brisket is a totally new thing to Dallas, and people were decidedly skeptical of its arrival. After Dallas Observer food editor Beth Rankin scoped out the Trinity Groves restaurant’s meat-free BBQ option, Dallasites responded with emotions ranging from rage to utter confusion.
A fight over chips and salsa is one thing, but the virality of this video is quite the other. Over the course of the year, a clip of this brawl made its way to the world’s biggest news outlets and millions of Facebook feeds.
The arrival of this California-based chain stirred a great deal of enthusiasm in Dallas, likely because of those wacky brunch cocktails and epic entrees.
Football players are no slouches when it comes to dropping giant chunks of change at restaurants, but this $55,000 dinner at Nick & Sam’s was impressive even by those standards. And, most importantly, the rookies equitably split the bill — unlike in past years — which only seems fair.