Can you tell I really like Asian food? A few months ago, I wrote about the most authentic kid-friendly Asian restaurants in Dallas. But let’s face it; sometimes we need a cocktail, a good meal and a break from the kiddos. Here are six of my favorite Asian restaurants in Dallas for a night on the town varying in price and theme.
Tanoshii – Hot bowls of steaming ramen and craft cocktails fill the long communal table at this trendy Deep Ellum Japanese restaurant. With a young, hip and eclectic crowd this place is the ideal spot for a date night. Sip on one of their many sakes while you watch the chefs make noodles from scratch in front of your eyes! The highlights on the menu include Gua Bao (braised pork belly steamed buns) as well as one of their many delicious street ramens, namely Spicy Miso.
Mughlai – Hands down the best Indian food in Dallas located near The Galleria. Walk into its large dining room and you will notice that it is filled with Indian families — this should tell you something — it’s authentic, the real deal, the Maharaja of Indian restaurants in Dallas. There is nothing especially wonderful about the ambiance and the food isn’t fancy or super unique, but it is done to perfection. Some of my personal favorites include Seekh-e-sikander (minced lamb skewers coked in a clay oven), Dal Makhani (creamy black lentils), Goat korma (goat cooked in a cashew almond cream sauce) and Murgh Tikka Masala (chicken roasted in tandoor and then cooked in an onion tomato sauce).
Yoshi Shabu Shabu – There is nothing else like it in DFW. In Japanese, Shabu Shabu translates to swish swish…which is exactly what you do at Yoshi Shabu Shabu in Richardson. You are the chef and you can choose from thinly sliced grass fed meat or wild sushi grade seafood and swish it in the Japanese hot pot of boiling water in front of you to create a delicious broth which ultimately becomes the base for your soup. Add in the local veggies and dip into one of their three seasoned sauces and enjoy over a bowl of rice. The noodles are to be saved until the very the end for your soup! It is a treat that will keep you coming back for more. The staff is very friendly and helpful and happily teaches you the Shabu way. It is a hip restaurant with a good bar and makes for an easy, fun and casual date night.
Pakpao – Located in the heart of the Design District, this fashionable Thai restaurant will leave your taste buds dying for more with one of their signature Northern Thai dishes or delicious cocktails that all have a specific Thai twist. There is an open kitchen so you can observe the talented chefs as they cook your beautifully prepared food and a fun vibe that makes it great for any date night. Some highlights include Ped Sarm Rod (crispy tamarind duck) and the Muo Pa Lorw (braised pork belly). Both are huge standouts and set this restaurant apart from other Thai meals I have had.
Tei An – If you have the means to SPLURGE on the 7 course chef tasting menu ($80 per person), I promise that it will be a night worth remembering. This meal, served in Tei An’s very dark and intimate dining room, rivals a kaiseki or traditional multi-course Japanese tasting menu. If you choose not to partake in the tasting menu you can still get a fabulous soba or ramen meal for only $14. And I have to mention the Tuna pressed sushi as well. Never in my life have I had sushi that literally melted when it hit my mouth. It”s one of the best things I have ever eaten. I highly recommend this place for both a special night or for a last minute craving for delicious noodle soup.
Nobu – Go big or go home, right Texans? Chef Nobu is a Japanese food God in my book and his high-end chic restaurant in the Cresent Hotel makes for a fabulous evening. Enjoy a bottle of sake and dive in to this fantastic menu. If you’re really hungry, I would suggest starting with one of their signature sashimi dishes, either jalapeno yellowtail or their seared salmon with karashi su miso. I would then follow it with something crunchy like their crispy rice with tuna followed by their seared tuna sashimi salad. Next I would go out on a limb and try the squid pasta or the whole fish tempura fried, and end with one of their signature sushi rolls. You will thank me later for this menu advice because their menu can be intimidating. Another highlight on the menu is their black miso cod. It is their number one seller. This place is romantic, fun, energetic and memorable. Fabulous place for an anniversary dinner.
Now get out your calendar, pick a date and make a reservation. Enjoy your night out eating Asian food and your much deserved break!