Sunday, June 10, 2012


Was looking for a new place to check out last night and ended up at Driftwood. My neighbor had told me about it a few weeks weeks ago. His review - the food was good but he spent a lot of money and left hungry. Portions just weren't big enough for him. He lost me at good food, so I figured what the heck.

Driftwood focuses on seafood and is helmed by Omar Flores on Davis, down the street from Bolsa Mercado. We pulled up and obtained rock star parking in their small parking lot. A good sign, we wondered?

We walked into the restaurant and were impressed. Two large driftwood sculptures were hung on the main wall, which is washed in blue. The restaurant is designed with that upscale beachy feel - blues, khakis, silvers. It tries to be calming but the noise level doesn't really make it so.

The menu is divided into several different sections Crudo Shellfish, Small Plates, Big Plates, To Share and Sweets. We had decided on getting some oysters and the ahi tuna crudo but then changed our minds after speaking to our server about the starter specials and getting more information on the oysters. The special included a beet cured Copper River Salmon crudo with jicama, asparagus and serranos which sounded great so we decided to switch that for the ahi crudo we had originally planned. After hearing the oysters came in a serving of 3 (that's $4 an oyster, fyi. My neighbor had complained that his serving was 4 oysters. He apparently got the big portion), we decided to skipped the oysters and try the Maine Lobster Roll instead.

The Copper River crudo was a delicious couple of bites. Four quarter sized slices of salmon, so 2 bites each was all with got. Regardless, it was a tasty dish. The fish was very fresh and the cool crunch of the jicama was a nice contrast to bite of the pepper. The lobster roll was fashioned after the more traditional East Coast lobster roll. It's basically a lobster salad on top of a dense roll, which had almost a popover consistency. I found the lobster to be fairly bland. I could not even taste the small piece of gherkins which was included.

But its the seafood entrees where Driftwood really excels. L had the chargrilled octopus with marble potato confit, manzanilla olives, watercress, pickled onions with a smoked tomato vinaigrette. Don't be afraid to try this dish. The octopus was cooked to perfection, and it had a wonderful smoky char to it that just made you forget you were eating something that had tentacles.

I had the crispy seared Wyoming Golden Trout with serrano ham, pimenton roasted fingerlings, English peas and a sherry vinegar pan sauce. When I first received my dish, I thought I had been given the wrong plate. The fish on the plate was pink like salmon, not golden like the name implied. Is this the trout? Yes, the server explained, it's ruby red trout, she stated. (Well, not quite. Wyoming Golden Trout is actually pink, not golden like the name states, but I didn't know that until after I googled it to write this review. The ruby red explanation worked just fine for me at the time.) The fish was great - filleted, deboned, then re-wrapped in its own skin to keep it moist and flavorful. The potatoes added a heartiness to the dish and the sauce walked the delicate balance of not ending up too sweet. I don't know why the peas were there. There simply wasn't enough of them to make any type of impact on the dish.

We also ordered the brussels sprouts, as I always do. These were crispy with pork belly and fish sauce. While I really enjoyed them, I wish chefs would stop trying to sweeten my favorite vegetable. They taste amazing on their own as far as I'm concerned. But this is coming from an unabashed brussels sprouts lover so I guess you have to sweeten them to apply to the masses.

So my take on Driftwood as we walked the five steps from the restaurant to our rock star parking? I left full but feeling a little empty in the pocketbook.  If you are in the mood for seafood, I recommend you check it out, but if I had to do it all over again, I would avoid the left side of the menu entirely and just stick with the entrees. While the starters are beautiful and tasty, I just don't want to spend that much money for so little food when I'm in the OC.


Monday, June 4, 2012


Checked out Snack on Friday, Avner Samuel's new place next to Veritas on Henderson. You know, where Horne & Dekker used to be (and whatever it was before that, and whatever it was before that). I really want something to succeed in that space. I love Veritas and Sushi Axiom on either side of it. Would Snack finally be the restaurant that would break the "snake bit" curse of that location?

We waited a bit at the bar before getting sat at a table outside. Yeah for a June Friday in Dallas when you can sit outside! The theme of Snack is, well, snacks -- small bites from around the world. The menu is quite limited. If you want a salad or are vegetarian, well, go next door to Sushi Axiom because Snack does not have much for you. Since I've been trying to eat a primarily plant and fish based diet lately, I found the menu extremely limiting. Oh well, I can always find something to eat on any menu - so we ordered the Chicken Schawarmas, crispy brussels sprouts (yeah my favorite veggie!) fritters, and the paella special (minus the pork sausage).

We started with the Chicken Schawarmas. Prior to Friday the only thing I knew about schawarmas was it was what Iron Man wanted to eat after the Avengers saved the world. (Sorry. Did I just spoil the ending of The Avengers for you? It is a super hero movie afterall. That's kind of what they always do. If you're surprised by that ending, then whatever you do don't go seeTitanic. See, there's this iceberg. . . . and, Rachel, stop being a smart aleck and get back to schawarmas) Snack's chicken schawarma is basically a gyro. Grilled chicken, cucumber tahini and pickled vegetables (aka onions) wrapped in a flatbread. While the inside was tasty (I really liked the pickled onions), the flatbread was a bit burnt so the burnt toast taste overwhelmed the dish. For $8 you will get one schawarma, cut in half. An entire order is probably just enough for one not particularly hungry woman's meal.

The paella showed up next. Where were the brussels sprouts I inquired? Our waiter, a young harried type, looked very confused and said he would check. He came back shortly thereafter and asked us, "Did no one bring them to you? The kitchen said they went out." Me (in my head): "Oh, whoops, you caught me. I just lied to you about not receiving the brussels sprouts. I'm actually hiding them in my purse." No, we didn't get them, that's why we asked! They must have gone to another table.

The paella was a huge disappointment. It started with such promise -- a huge paella pan full of mussels, chicken, other seafood and rice. Plenty of food for two hungry, brussels sproutless girls. With much anticipation, I opened up a mussel and found, well, the dried up remnants of a bivalve. The mussels were overcooked. Every single one of them. Sigh. The rest of the paella was just bland. Absolutely none of that wonderful saffron flavor which makes paella so rich and wonderful. It reminded me more of the Campbell Soup chicken and rice recipe my mom used to make when I was growing up than paella. We finished it because it was there and familiar but not because we were particularly interested in it.

The brussels sprouts fritters finally showed up. When I saw "fritters" I imagined something other than battered and fried brussels sprouts, but that was what they were. Not a particularly inspired offering. It came with a pine nut and caper dip (read aioli) which was tangy and enjoyable though.

So, my first take on Snack? Street inspired bites that are truly pedestrian. They've only been opened for a couple of weeks, so maybe I'll let them work a few of the kinks out before I go back. But that's what I said about Horne & Dekker when I first went there and never went back so who knows.


Thursday, April 19, 2012

Sissy's Fried Chicken

Hello loyal followers! Miss me? I missed you. It's spring and the weather (minus the tornadoes) couldn't be nicer in the Big D. I just love this time of year. Tulips (my favorite flower), baseball (go Rangers!), and patio weather. Today's review has nothing to do with those things but I still love them.

So LK and I headed to Sissy's before yet another 40th birthday party. (Seems like everyone I know has turned 40 in the last 12 months.) It had been awhile since I had been to the former Hector's on Henderson space and was anxious to see what Lisa Garza had done with the place. I liked the decor. It has an old southern home (with a bar) feel, like Hattie's. While I liked the look of the restaurant, I hated the noise. Maybe I'm getting old (afterall, I was going to my own 40th birthday party just 4 months ago - oh Lord I'm 40 and 1/3), but I'm sick of noisy restaurants. I want to be able to enjoy my meal and conversation with my dining companions at the same time. Is that too much to ask, dagnubbit (shake fist)?

Our server came by to say hello and talk about the drink specials. I have no idea what she said. Not only could I not hear her, I was also distracted by her uniform. All the servers are dressed as if they worked in a southern restaurant in late 50s. I'll admit it, having not grown up in the South, being waited on by a woman of color dressed in a costume that could have been worn by an extra in The Help made me slightly uncomfortable. But then I noticed how teeny tiny our server was. She is one of those lucky women who are naturally slight of build. The fat girl who lives inside (and occasionally embodies me) instantly hated her. How on earth was I going to feel good about shoving fried chicken in my gullet now? (And, yes, I know that's wrong of me, loyal followers. She seemed like a very nice person and I should not judge someone like that. But I did, and I'm sorry.).

LK and I looked at the menu, trying to decide what to eat. At first glance, one thing became clear -- most of my skinny, healthy eating girlfriends wouldn't enjoy eating here. (See, I don't discriminate against the skinny. I just secretly wish I was one of them). It's southern cooking. Lots of things are fried, lots of things that are smothered in gravy and there doesn't appear that there's anything green that isn't covered in Hellmann's, butter or batter.

We started with the oysters which were, of course, fried. They came with cane ginger green sauce and spicy mayo. Oysters were fried perfectly so as not to take away from their briny juiciness. I liked the sauces too. The green sauce had a nice tang and the spicy mayo had a nice heat.

LK and I had already decided to have the fried chicken. I mean, come on, you go to a place named "Sissy's Fried Chicken" for the first time and order, what, the meatloaf? The chicken comes in two sizes - 2pc ($10)or bucket ($20). Since we both wanted to order the chicken, we ordered the bucket which was way too much food for two people. I really wish they offered a half bucket for 2. I hate to waste.

I'll admit it, I'm not a fried chicken aficionado. I'm a Yankee by birth and my mother never fried anything because she considered that unhealthy. (Sauteing everything in margarine was, however, perfectly nutritious.) Growing up, my fried chicken either came from the Colonel or, more regularly, a box of Oven Fry. So when I say this was some of the best fried chicken I've ever had, I don't know if that's saying a whole lot. But the skin was crispy and flavorful on the outside and the meat was nice and juicy on the inside which I understand is the making of great fried chicken. I'll let you be the judge.

The chicken comes with whipped potatoes or "sloppy slaw." I asked our server (who, again, was a perfectly nice young woman), what "sloppy slaw" was. She looked at me and said, "cole slaw." Okay, maybe it was a stupid question but there are different types of cole slaw out there and I wanted to know what type of cole slaw it was. I just decided to be surprised. It turned out to be a mayo based slaw that, quite frankly, tasted a lot like KFC's which was perfectly fine with me because that's the kind I like the best (just like Mom used to order).

We also ordered the fried okra (our attempt at something green). It's sliced lengthwise and then fried which made it disappointing as it had that slightly slimy texture that can ruin a good fried okra.

After all of that fried food, there was no room for dessert. But I will try that cookies and milk punch one day. I firmly believe one should get calcium with their brandy.

Speaking of punch, Sissy's does have a drink menu which has a variety of southern spiked punches. LK ordered a Cucumber Cooler which had Tanqueray and, of course, cucumbers. I ordered a sazerac which made me unable to feel my teeth after about 2 sips. There's also a variety of fancy non-alcoholic iced teas available, if you are willing to shell out $9.50 per glass. Although they sounded delicious and refreshing, they didn't come with a genie who would grant me three wishes (first wish: make me skinny like our server), which is what it would have taken for me to spend almost 10 bucks on a glass of iced tea.

Overall, I enjoyed Sissy's but it feels a little one note. I just don't see myself coming back unless I have a craving for fried chicken which I rarely have. Maybe they are counting on the nostalgia factor to create repeat business but I didn't grow up on this kind of food so I guess the nostalgia factor is kind of lost on me. I'm not saying the food wasn't good, it was, but I personally need more to make me come back again. Maybe it won't be lost on you. Try it and decide for yourself.


Sunday, February 19, 2012


Time to get back to writing loyal followers. I have a long list of places I need to eat at and it's not getting any shorter so, here we go.

I made reservations at Oak in the Design District for Friday night. (I was going to do Campo but heard Matt McCallister might be in a bit of a mood about reviewers this weekend - ha!) I knew from my attempts to eat there a couple of weeks ago that reservations are a must right now, unless you want to eat there really early or really late. Try to go without a reservation and the valet will very nicely turn you away. (The valet may also turn you away if you drive a Honda, based upon the high end luxury vehicles parked in front. I guess the Highland Park crowd has found Oak.)

The restaurant does the Design District justice. It has a cool mid-century modern look to it which is so in fashion right now. Don Draper would be right at home here but for that pesky non-smoking ordinance Dallas has in place. There's a projected art image of an oak tree on the far wall that moves with the non-existent wind. The booths are mini leather sofas. The lighting is comfortable and the noise level is just perfect. Dallas restaurateurs take note, we like to hear ourselves think when we eat. Thank you Oak for letting us do that.

LB and I were early for our reservation so we headed to the bar for a glass of wine. The bar area is separated from the dining area by a knee high planter which is just the perfect height to knock anything over that is placed on it. So if you have the desire to place your drink on it, don't. Or else LB's giant handbag will go all bull in a china shop on your cocktail. And to the DB who got very snippy when LB accidentally knocked over his glass of white wine, get over it. It was truly an accident. You should be more worried about why your date chose the wear that hideous furry creature over her too short dress. Anywho. . .

The wine list is comfortable and pretty typically priced. You'll easily find a decent bottle within your price comfort level.

We were sat in our very comfortable booth and after a bit of a wait, our server appeared. We started with salads. LB eyed the beet salad until she discovered the "fromage blanc" was actually the evil goat cheese (LB believes that goat cheese is what the devil would taste like) so she stuck with the caesar. It was good but the lettuce required much cutting to get it into bite sized portions. My baby greens salad with goat cheese (I, on the other hand, think the devil would taste like cottage cheese, so I'm not goat cheese adverse), medjol dates and almonds also suffered from the too giant lettuce leaves syndrome. I also wished the goat cheese was stuffed in the dates rather than having the dates chopped in the salad. When I suggested this to LB she responded, "So you want to take God's delicious natural candy and stuff it with the devil?" Why, yes I do, LB, yes, I do.

After nixing the Kobe Beef because of the quark (funny name for goat cheese we learned - Dear Oak, let's call goat cheese, goat cheese, please) spaetzel, LB had the grilled salmon with white soy, Thai basil, salsify (which is a root vegetable) and a curried coconut broth. LB enjoyed the salmon, found the salsify (which, I admit, we actually thought were potatoes. Thank you wikipedia for making me sound smarter than I actualy am) a bit too hard for her liking and didn't find the broth added much to the dish. That didn't stop her from finishing every last bite.

I've been on a duck kick lately, which is odd since it I've never been a huge duck fan and I had an absolutely awful duck experience on New Years Eve (raw duck = bad). But after having an amazing duck meal at The Grape a couple of weeks ago, I thought I'd give it a go. Oak's roasted duck breast is served with puy lentils, brussels sprouts (mmmm, my favorite), and burgundy foie gras jus. The duck was perfect cooked and tender without the greasy duck feel. And I absolutely loved the lentils with the duck. It's a perfect winter dinner, filling and warm. Happy plate for me as well.

We decided to split dessert. We ordered the lemon bar cheesecake with sour cherry, almond shortbread and grapefruit macaroon. The cheesecake and shortbread bottom were delicious. Creamy and light with the perfect amount of tartness from the lemon. The French macaroon was a nice touch too. There was nothing sour about the cherries, which tasted like fancy maraschinos. I could have done without them entirely because they were simply too sweet to balance the tartness of the lemon. The cherries were the only thing not happy about our dessert plate.

LB and I left Oak deciding to come back. The food was good, the prices are reasonable (our meal plus a glass of chardonnay plus a cup of hot tea for me was less than $90 pre tip) and the atmosphere is comfortable. It's a good place to impress a date (as long as you don't leave your wine on the planter). Oak also has 2 large patios which will be just perfect once the weather warm weather comes to Dallas (and as long as you don't mind the hum of the freeway).


Sunday, December 4, 2011

Bob's at the Omni

Had dinner at the new Bob's at the new Omni at the convention center a couple of weeks ago. Here's the gist: it's just like Bob's but in a new shinier packaging. The steaks are still covered in butter and you'll still get your carrot and choice of potatoes with your steak. It's a steakhouse and it does that well. The service was very attentive although his ragged shirtsleeves were not up to dress code (and, FYI, unless you are the Dread Pirate Roberts, using "As you wish" multiple times gets less endearing as dinner progresses). But I don't know if I will go back to this particular location and here's why:

1. The valet left our car outside, running, for 5 minutes before anyone moved it. Not the safest thing to do when you're down the street from the bus station.

2. It's just a little too shiny and new. There is nothing special about it. In fact, it feels just like Perry's. I think they may have used the same designer. I like the original Bob's. It reminds me of the banquet hall my grandparents used to own on Milwaukee Avenue in Chicago where real Chicago "politicians" would make "deals." (I'll let you use your imagination, as I did growing up, what the quotations mean). Bottom line, if I'm going to go to Bob's, I will stick to the original.

3. It was just a bit sleepy. It was the second weekend so I thought the place would have been a bustling scene but, no. It definitely lacks the energy and warmth of Nick & Sam's, which is my preferred steakhouse, particularly during the winter.

4. The bar is small and there's no TV. This became a very important fact since we finished dinner right at the beginning of the 4th Quarter of the Oklahoma/Baylor game and we really wanted to watch the game. Since there was no TV at the bar at Bob's we thought the sports bar right next door would be the perfect place to spend the next half hour or so. There were people mingling in the front of the sports bar who we thought were waiting for tables. Well, mingling isn't quite the right word as they all looked very tired and haggard, like they'd been waitin for quite awhile. But, we didn't have to worry about that, there looked like there was plenty of standing room around the bar. We headed there, until we were stopped by the hostess. Oh, we don't want a table, we just want to stand at the bar for a drink and some game watching, we said. Sorry, we're told, there's a wait for that too. I'm willing to stand at the bar in fabulous, yet quite uncomfortable 4" heals and you are denying me that opportunity? I'm sorry, since when in the history of sports bars has there ever been a wait to stand at the bar? The bar appeared nowhere near capacity. So we left. Bob's wasn't an option since no TV so we headed to the hotel restaurant. It had teeny, tiny TVs in the bar area and the bar was actually closed but at least they let us sit and watch the game. And it was one heck of a game. I would have been perfectly happy watching it at Bob's but, alas, no TV. So am I being fair making this a reason why I won't go back to this Bob's any time soon? Probably not but the whole adventure just left a bad taste in my mouth. Sorry.


Sunday, October 30, 2011

Company Cafe

Well hello, loyal followers. And if you are still a follower after all this time then you must be loyal. I'm sorry there have been no posts in so long. Shortly after my last post, well, life threw me a curve ball I did not quite expect. I have always been a fairly healthy individual and then quite suddenly, I wasn't. I was swollen, stiff, occasionally turned purple, extremely fatigued and had some pretty serious abdominal pain happening for awhile there. So I've spent the last few months trying to figure out what the heck was wrong with me. It took a few days in the hospital, many, many, many doctors' appointments and a whole lot of my blood getting tested, but three months later I was finally diagnosed with lupus with Reynaud's phenomenon (and a side of panniculitis just to make it all extra special). It's all very treatable (although not curable) but it's been a royal pain in my, well, you name the body part, I probably hurt there at some point. To top it all off, the medications I'm on have, at various times, taken away my ability to drink alcohol, eradicated my appetite, and at one point gave me such a super human sense of smell I couldn't walk into any restaurant without being overwhelmed. A sad foodie was I but I'm happy to say I think we've finally reached a point where I can say I'm "managing" this disease instead of it controlling me. Not exactly how I wanted to end my 30s but what's a girl to do? The good news is turning 40 next month will be a cake walk.

Over the last few months, breakfast has become very important. I was losing weight very quickly in the beginning (which really wasn't a bad thing since I needed to lose some weight) and I had to force myself to eat if I hoped to have any amount of energy during the day. I had at least a little bit of appetite first thing in the morning before the pills and the pain took it away so if I could get some good protein in me first thing and maybe some vegetables, I could get enough energy to make it through the day. And that's how Company Cafe on Greenville became my favorite new breakfast spot.

Now I'd been there before I got sick. I was just about to write a post before this all started. I enjoyed my breakfasts there. Service was occasionally spotty, and I absolutely hated the coffee (It's Oak Cliff Roasters. Although I'm all about supporting the local guy, I just don't like it. It's a bit too roasted for my palette. But it might be just fine for you. I stick to green tea now, anyway). And dear Lord, if your restaurant faces east and you serve breakfast why, oh why, are there no blinds or curtains on the windows to shield diners from the morning sun? But I had a few great breakfasts there and the cook could really poach an egg. I found myself wanting to go back for more.

If you have an appetite and don't mind spending almost $20 for breakfast, try the Deep Bowl. It's sweet potato hash, topped with eggs your way (my way is poached easy. Seriously, I have never gotten a poorly poached egg at this place which is a serious accomplishment. So many people screw them up.) and avocado. The standard version comes with ground beef but I recommend you upgrade to the ground buffalo. The ground beef can get a tad greasy but the buffalo adds a great flavor without the grease factor. The price tag is quite steep, but the portion is big enough to keep you full until dinner.

The Beat is my favorite. Applewood smoked bacon, 2 eggs your way, avocado, Lemley's tomatoes and challah toast. You can substitute a gluten free bagel for $2 if you would like as well (they have a lot of gluten free options if you are into/need to have that sort of thing). It's a simple but perfect breakfast for me. I'm pretty much off bacon right now because of the salt content (I also ask for no salt on the avocado and tomatoes now) but when I bring the pup for some patio time (and they have a great, pup friendly patio), he gets a tasty treat. Ask for some jam for your toast. They tell me it's made in house, and the peach is great.

The omelets were a tad less impressive. While the cook rocks at poaching eggs, my omelet was a bit over cooked. But you can get a nice serving of vegetables and farm fresh cheese in them which is an nice change of pace from the typical meat and cheese omelets you find at most breakfast places.

The migas consist of chicken breast, tortilla strips, scrambled eggs, onions and bell peppers with salsa. It's served on some black beans and feta cheese. If you love raw red peppers (I don't), you'll love this dish. While I liked the flavor, the textures from all the raw peppers were slightly off putting.

I'm not a big breakfast sweet fan but the Company Cafe's granola is great. Texas Daily Harvest Greek yogurt, Dad's gluten-free granola, berries and honey. My neighbor thinks it's the best granola he's ever tasted. I can't argue because, well, I'm hardly a granola connoisseur, but it's pretty good although I would prefer a higher yogurt to granola ratio.

I thought I had found the perfect opportunity to test out their breakfast sweets when I took my 6 year old niece there this weekend. Afterall, what kid doesn't like sweets for breakfast (or lunch, or dinner)? She, as all 6 year olds do, ordered the waffles with chocolate chips and whipped cream. (The waffles are gluten free but she didn't need to know that.) The great thing about kids is you find out almost immediately whether they like something or not. Since I now know what gluten free waffles with chocolate chips and whipped cream look like after being spat from a 6 year old's mouth, I can tell you she hated them. One bite from me and I understood (although remain completely embarrassed by) her reaction. These waffles were so sickenly sweet, they were inedible. We sent them back, and she happily scarfed down the scrambled eggs, bacon and toast we ordered for her next. (My niece even declared the eggs to be the "best eggs I've seriously ever had in my entire life." She has a flair for the dramatic, this one). Our server then came by and told us the kitchen staff (who was in training for the new location at the Katy Trail) was having trouble with the mix today. I'd have to agree if it was too sweet for a 6 year old. Gluten free baking can be tricky so I'm hoping this was just an anomaly.

So is the Company Cafe breakfast perfection? Not exactly, but I know I'll keep coming back for more. I just like the place. I feel like I'm getting a quality breakfast that's a tad better for me than the typical cheese covered concoctions most breakfast places serve. The service has greatly improved and the patio is a perfect place to enjoy these nice autumn mornings. Yes, they serve lunch and dinner and have a large selection of gluten free baked goods too. Check it out.


Sunday, July 17, 2011

Dodie's Reef

I had lunch at the new Dodie's Reef today. It's in the old Hurricane space on Greenville that burned a couple of years back. Those of us who live in the Lakewood hood are just so excited to have something in that space. We were seriously getting tired of the burnt out building look. [rhost] (seriously, are the brackets really necessary?) has just opened, and it's only a matter of time before we start playing "Valet Frogger" on Greenville again with the Terilli's valets. Seriously, you really aren't a true Lakewood resident until you've almost killed a Terilli's valet as they dart out in front of you on Greenville.

But back to Dodie's Reef. I had stopped by for happy hour last week and was very impressed. They have this great indoor/outdoor bar up front with televisions above the bar. It's a fantastic place to watch a game. It's also a great place to flirt with boys watching the game, since it seems to be where the 35+ set in Lakewood has been hanging out lately (ok, maybe "boys" is a stretch, but I'm an almost 40 (ugh) single girl, so "boy" is still acceptable to me). And don't let the fact that the windows to the bar are wide open as the temps outside get above the century mark scare you off. It's perfectly cool on the inside, and it's even comfortable sitting at the outside bar. I don't even want to know what their electricity bill is. If they don't go broke paying their electricity bill by then, Dodie's is definitely going to be the perfect place in Lakewood to catch a football game once the weather cools down (and they work out that labor dispute). They have a great bartender in Rachel. It was Women's World Cup Finals, the bar was packed, and she was holding her own, all alone, with a smile on her face. Tip her well when you're there.

We started with the Mexican shrimp cocktail. It's a schooner full of boiled shrimp in a spicy tomato pico like sauce and avocado. It's served with tortilla chips that have a spicy lime seasoning on them. It was good and seemed bottomless. Too much for 2 people.

Now if you're on a diet, Dodie's might not be the best place for you. Most of the seafood offerings are fried. Po boys, fried seafood baskets, fried pickles even. I didn't want anything fried and had had my fill of raw oysters on my trip to Mobile, Alabama last week so I decided on the sea bass. I got a huge piece of fish topped with guacamole with 6 large grilled asparagus and a pile of grits. Calorie-wise, I probably would have been better with a shrimp po boy. The fish was tender and the asparagus were perfectly cooked. The grits had more of a mashed potato taste and feel instead of the buttery, cheesy way I like my grits but they were fine. And although it tasted good, I could have done without the guacamole all together. It was just too much food.

K had the crab cakes which are on the appetizer list. She like them but I don't think she was expecting the sauce covering them.

I often lament that it's so sad that in a place like Dallas where we have so many fantastic sushi restaurants, we have so few good seafood restaurants. Yes, I know we live nowhere near a coast but if we can get in great sushi, we should be able to get in great seafood. Unfortunately, Dodie's really didn't do anything to end the lament. It's a serviceable seafood restaurant, but there's nothing here that really wows. I'll come back for the bar and boy watching and I'll probably catch a bite here from time to time but the search for great seafood in Dallas continues. But who knows, maybe if the boy watching goes well, I'll reel in a catch of another sort and a different kind of search will end. ;)