Sunday, October 18, 2009

Mom's milkshake meets its match

It was my mom’s and my favorite homemade treat, but I could never quite make it as well as she did. It only takes three, well four, steps but those simple steps come together to make the best milkshake anyone has ever had.

1) Scoop chocolate ice cream into a large brightly colored plastic tumbler

2) Pour just-the-right amount of skim milk over the ice cream (the proportion of ice cream to milk was VERY important)

3) Stir until you bring the concoction to the perfect consistency (not too thin nor too thick)

4) Eat with a spoon - too thick to drink with a straw

It isn't brain surgery but no one can perfect it like Mom does, and that includes me.

I can remember sitting in our turquoise colored kitchen watching her make the frosty milkshake for our after-dinner treat, taking meticulous mental notes, and wishing mine came out as silky, creamy, and luscious as hers.

Still to this day, I still cannot master her simple milkshake. But, I have found the next best thing. Burguesa Burger, a drive-thru Mexican burger hut on lower Inwood, makes a delicious, chocolaty, rich milkshake. While their monstrous burgers and salty fries are out-of-this-world good, it is their milkshakes that keep me craving. Topped with a sugar doughnut, this shake is so thick that you will resort to using the straw as a makeshift spoon. And the best part, it tastes just my mom's milkshake complete with childhood memories.

So here’s a question for all you out there…well two questions. Where do you find your favorite milkshake in Dallas? Secondly, is there something that your mom made that seems so simple but you can’t seem to master (those that may conjure up great memories)? I look forward to reading your comments!!

  • 2222 Inwood Rd., Dallas, TX 75235
  • 214.350.7772

Friday, October 16, 2009

YUTAKA: Add some zen to your lunch

I found the BEST lunch spot and I want everyone to know about it. The usual lunch suspects might be a quick sandwich, salad, soup, etc. But hold on to your seats friends, because I want to introduce you to sushi and bento boxes for your mid-day munchies.

Yutaka Sushi Bistro on McKinney is my new fav lunch spot. Just run into this tiny little Asian shoebox of a restaurant and brush all your daily stresses and to-do lists to the wayside.

Our days are chalked full of cell phones, responsibilities, emails, crisis moments, and controlled chaos and Yutaka is its antithesis. Calm, serene, unassuming, relaxing, zen - those five words manifest themselves into Yutaka’s atmosphere. Sit, sip on lush green tea, take a deep breath and exhale your daily grind. (And don't worry, you can still get in and out in 30 minutes!)

Silky smooth Yellowtail sashimi with jalapenos in a bright, citrus yuzu sauce will immediately lift your spirits when you order it as an appetizer. Wanting a quick jump start, order the shishito peppers and perk right up.

At $14, lunch can’t get much better with Yutaka’s Bento Box 'B'. For your mere 14-dollar purchase, you receive a soul-warming cup of fresh miso soup, a springy green ginger salad, a beautifully delicate California roll, crunchy vegetable tempura, melt-in-your-mouth miso glazed black cod and fresh fruit too. Trust me, this lunch will satisfy for the whole day.

Make Yutaka Sushi Bistro your getaway destination for lunch and hush those 12 o'clock hunger pains.

  • 2633 McKinney Ave., Dallas, TX
  • 214.969.5533

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

HACIENDA - Bold colors, bland food

I wanted to love Hacienda on Henderson. Tex-Mex cuisine, spanning patio with a gorgeous fountain, vibrant colors, up-beat music, yummie cocktail menu…Hacienda had my name written all over it – well until I ate there.

While the prices are quite reasonable, nothing particularly tasted all that good. Im not saying that everything was terrible, but Im not saying that anything was great.

We tried the tuna crudo, shrimp cocktail, beefy and cheezy enchilada, brisket tacos and a few other house specialties and none had much flavor. The food is just bland and dumbed-down. At one point our server warned us that the sauce on the enchiladas was "very, very spicy". I was shocked when I was actually able to eat it (I have a very low tolerance for spicy food). Just one example of how nothing seemed to deliver.

This is my two cents – go to Hacienda for the bar. Go for the music, go for the drinks and just go for the scene.

Don’t go for the food.

  • 2326 N Henderson Ave, Dallas TX
  • 214.515.9990

Bailey's Prime Plus

After much debate and flip-flopping, we decided on Bailey’s Prime Plus for our dining destination last night (and boy, what a destination it turned out to be!). First step inside this sprawling eatery, I was immediately transported to Las Vegas. A restaurant of this grandeur belongs on The Strip rather than in the Big D. From the water features to the black and gold motif, this is a beautiful restaurant. And the bar…sexy! Red crystal chandeliers, black lacquer floors and nude art draping the walls screams “new Dallas hot-spot”!

The food was good. Steaks, perfectly seasoned and prepared, being the best part of dinner (as they should be), while appetizers somewhat disappointed. The almond-encrusted fried brie was glorified fried cheese sticks and the chicken-fried lobster stuffed avocado lacked a reasonable amount of lobster (4 tiny pieces to be exact). But dont get me wrong, we ate every bit of both appetizers! Order the lobster bisque and you will be licking the bowl for every last drop! Sides were just O.K. We had the button mushrooms in a red wine sauce and the lobster mac-and-cheese and neither seems to win us over. Next time we will try the scalloped potatoes as I have heard they are fabulous.

Special thanks to Mr. Ivy (the sommelier) for the great wine recommendation. Never before this night had I tried a white from Chateauneuf -du-Pape. I was looking for a unique white and he definitely steered me in the right direction! Interesting wine, beer and cocktail selection, so go and check it out!

  • 8160 Park Lane Suite 130, Dallas TX
  • 214.750.8100