Drinks & Appetizers
Tinie’s: A fine Mexican cuisine and Mezcal hall hidden in the southside of Fort Worth industrial area is known for their margaritas, Ay Papi (Anejo tequila, house citrus syrup, orange bitters, mole bitters). If you are into mezcals, they offer a large selection including Don Mateo Manso de Sahuayo (complex aromas of hazelnut and almonds, dried chili with fresh herbs). I really like the tapas style menu to start out the evening with tuna tostada and handmade empanadas.
Grace: Grace is a perfect spot for a dressy dinner or casual bites! The menu emphasizes purity, simplicity and seasonal flavors and the outstanding wine list is complemented by sommeliers. If you are in the mood for oysters (both raw or fried) or house charcuterie, or a cheese board, you are in for a treat. The wine list is extensive along with an interesting cocktail like French Tart Effin (cucumber vodka, Saint Germain, grapefruit juice).
Fixture: Fixture has the BEST happy hour in town if you are looking for a bar & patio seating. I highly recommend you to try one of each from the menu, or at least the truffle mac n’ cheese, fried crawfish balls, and beet fries!
Atico: Enjoy a wonderful view of the city’s center, curated drinks & bites from the rooftop of Springhill Suites in the Stockyards. Share a Spanish flatbread, croquettes, or foie gras with some Barcelona flair. While you are there, be sure to try the signature Aigua de Valencia made with vodka, orange juice, and Cointreau and topped with bubbly cava.
Tulips: Tulips is a one-stop shop for live entertainment, coffee, drinks, and food. The food is a “Texas Kosher” menu that pays homage to traditional Kosher delis. The beverage list is extensive with everything from draft beer (lots of local options) to craft cocktails made up of spirited new drinks and reimagined classics. Tulips also serves as a late-night coffeehouse, which is very rare in Fort worth.
Zaap Kitchen: A fast casual Thai and Lao concept at WestBend serves a mixture of comfortingly familiar Thai and interesting Laotian street food such as Tom Kha Soup, sausage and juicy pork shoulder bites, and laab. The menu offers a variety of choices with an option to add your choice of protein to most of the dishes. Be sure to try Laotian sausage, jeow bong – Laotian smoked chili dipping sauce with sticky rice.
Delucca Gaucho Pizza & Wine: An elegant neighborhood pizzeria that serves bottomless slices of wood-fired oven pizza just like at churrascaria. One fixed price, no menu and several delicious handcrafted pizzas for you to enjoy! You are welcomed with a lobster bisque to sip, Kobe meatballs, and a salad…then the pizza party begins with unique and exotic toppings. All of the pizzas can be prepared with GF Cauliflower crust and many of the pizzas can be prepared using 100% vegan ingredients.
Hatsuyuki Hand Roll Bar: Specializing solely in sushi hand rolls (temaki), Hatsuyuki is unlike any other sushi spots in Fort Worth. Tucked away in the West 7th-area strip mall as La Familia, they have a zen-like attractive horseshoe-shaped sushi bar with a fast-casual, full dining service. The hand rolls are made from crisp sheets of seaweed, twisted into a cylindrical shape and filled with warm rice and your choice of salmon, tuna, scallops, yellowtail, crab, eel, toro, and lobster.
Paris 7th: For a celebratory dinner, Paris 7th is the place to experience fine French dining. The menu is pretty elaborate with various courses and extensive wine list, which can be served by the glass or by the bottle. While you dine at Paris 7th, I highly recommend you try Escargot à la Bourguignonne (one dozen Burgundy snails in Saint-Emilion’s garlic & parsley butter – presented in the shells) and Soupe à l’Oignon ”Les Halles” (French onion soup with melted Gruyère as served in Paris).
Funky Picnic Brewery & Cafe: If you love beer, bread, and outdoors, then you will love this family-friendly brewpub in the Near Southside. Offering a constantly rotating lineup of brews & a full kitchen offering house-made artisan sandwiches, burgers such as Cluck Norris, Bohemian Wrapsody, and Vegan AF Burger.
Curly’s Frozen Custard: Curly’s has been serving frozen custard and hot dogs since 2012 on Camp Bowie Boulevard. You can build your own custard, sundaes, malt, shakes, and more with a variety of toppings like churro, marshmallow, and hot fudge. The founders have worked diligently with food scientists, flavor experts and plenty of family/friend taste tests to develop their signature frozen custards, which are very rich and flavorful.
Rise: Located at Clearfork, Rise is a perfect dessert destination if you are looking for a bit of French traditions in a casual environment. The menu offers a great variety of chocolate and fruity souffles, chocolate cake, creme brulee, and fruit tart.
Alma’s Palateria: Named after the owner José Ponce’s mother, Alma’s Paleteria has perfected the paleta (a frozen Mexican ice cream on a stick) that offers many classic and creative flavors. Some of the most popular ones are Alma’s chocolate-dipped, shaved-coconut-garnished pecan paleta, paleta de cajeta (caramelized goat’s milk) with a strip of membrillo (quince) paste in the center and the spiced Abuelita hot chocolate flavor.
Emporium Pies: A specialty pie shop with a walk up window serves “fine pies for fine folk” with a focus on high quality ingredients and a seasonal menu. You can enjoy the pie by the slice or get the whole pie to share later. My personal favorites from Emporium are The Drunken Nut (bourbon pecan with shortbread crust) and Smooth Operator (French silk chocolate with a pretzel crust).
Insomnia Cookies: Founded in a college dorm, Insomnia specializes in delivering warm, delicious cookies right at your door or, you can pick up Insomnia Cookies in Fort Worth near TCU until 1 PM. The menu includes all your classic flavors, including vegan and gluten-free options.
Written by Dixya Bhattarai.
Photo courtesy of Dallas Morning News.