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Dallas’s top food folk share their hopes for 2023.
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What We Want to See More of in Dallas Dining in 2023

Hopes for more neighborhood restaurants, supporting local famers and ranchers, and fascinating cocktails abound

Courtney E. Smith is the editor of Eater Dallas. She's a journalist of 20 years who was born and raised in Texas, with bylines in Pitchfork, Wired, Esquire, Yahoo!, Salon, Refinery29, and more. When she's not writing about food, she co-hosts the podcast Songs My Ex Ruined.

Eater Dallas polled local chefs and journalists about their thoughts on the local food scene in 2022. We also asked them to look forward to 2023, and here are the ideas they hope to see take root in the Dallas dining scene.

What new innovative ideas have you seen emerge this year that you hope continue into 2023?

Dean Fearing, chef at Fearing’s Restaurant:

“With rising food, beverage and labor cost, we are seeing restaurants change the way they do business. Many menus are challenging chefs to cross utilize ingredients to keep menus interesting without being redundant — keeping themselves and patrons engaged. Some of the best dishes I have been trying lately are the ones where the chefs are taking the off cuts of vegetables and meat and turning them into works of art, instead of throwing them in the trash because they are untraditional.”

Tiffany Derry, chef at Roots Southern Table:

Chef Tiffany Derry looks down as she plates a dish in the kitchen of her restaurant.
Chef Tiffany Derry prepares a dish in the kitchen at Roots Southern Table.
Katy Tran

“This year, I saw an increase in collective efforts between chefs and farmers. There were many great dinners and events to raise money for farmers and ranchers which is so important. Everyone came together to collaborate and I hope to see more of those strides next year because we’re really all in this together.”

Nataly Keomoungkhoun, D magazine food editor:

“A few weeks ago, I stopped by Midnight Rambler underneath The Joule and had a round of Jell-O shots from their holiday cocktail menu called the Miami Granny. The shots were set like deviled eggs and even had whipped pineapple rum-flavored cream and powdered dried strawberries to mimic paprika on top. They had to have been one of the coolest (and possibly strongest? Ha!) Jell-O shots I’ve had in Dallas. I’d love to see drinks be more creative and expected next year. Drinks, in my opinion, are a great way to carry a guest from one dish to the next, and they can bring so much to the overall experience of a meal or outing.”

John Tesar, chef at Knife:

“I think everyone has really embraced supporting our local farmers, ranchers, and suppliers. I think it’s really going to take a firm grip. All the chefs around town are using all the local farms and sourcing ingredients locally. Texas is an ingredient rich community, we shouldn’t be getting stuff from outside of here. During times when ingredients are seasonal we should be using what we have here. That’s what makes food honest.”

Jon Alexis, Imperial Fizz hospitality group:

“I think 2023 will continue to see more emphasis on great neighborhood restaurants. The ‘destination’ experiences are great, but nothing beats neighborhood spots where diners see their friends and neighbors for an unofficial ‘block party’ every night.”

Brendan Frankel, chef de cuisine at Rosewood Mansion on Turtle Creek:

A man in a shortsleeved white chef’s jacket stands in front of a dining room with yellow backlighting. Next to him on the left is a statue, with a matching statue in the background on the right.
Brendan Frankel in the Mansion Restaurant.
Rosewood Mansion Restaurant

“One trend I’m really excited about for 2023 is bringing back the simplicity of dishes. By focusing on a ‘less is more’ mentality, we allow the true flavors of the ingredients to shine through and offer a more authentic dining experience for each individual. At the Mansion, I try to focus on the ingredient first and the dish second, really letting the unique elements of the plate speak for themselves.”

Brian Reinhart, D magazine dining critic:

“We are starting to see an uptick in prix fixe menu options, like four-course menus. There are also more chef’s tasting-style menus in town now than there were a year ago, and they’re not all twee or precious or $200. I’d love to be able to recommend a fun, seasonal, $80 tasting menu experience as everyone’s new favorite special-occasion dinner next year.”

Courtney E. Smith, Eater Dallas editor:

“Probably a controversial opinion, but I grew up near Houston and lived in San Antonio for a time and Tex-Mex in Dallas is pretty bad comparatively. I’d like to see more Tex-Mex options (and was very happy to welcome Escondido Tex-Mex this year) that aren’t a chain.”


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