Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Grimaldi's - The Best Pizza in Dallas!

Grimaldi's - 5 *s!

There are a few locations in Dallas, as well as the famous location under the Brooklyn Bridge in New York. The location in Brooklyn has long lines at all hours. Thankfully, that's a non-issue at the locations in Dallas and Plano. The pizza is delicious. The sauce has an excellent flavor, and there's not too much cheese. I always appreciate pizza with basil. The regular pizza automatically comes with basil on it. One of the last times I was there, a friend asked for ranch dressing, and the waiter said they don't carry ranch dressing. As I said, you only need ranch on bad pizza. I used to have a thing for getting Papa John's and dipping it in ranch dressing. With this pizza, however, there is definitely no need for ranch. They use charcoal ovens at Grimaldi's so it's a different type of pizza than the conventional New York-style pizza. On this particular occasion, we came for my father's birthday in January. They send him a coupon for a free pizza or free cheesecake every year. Make sure to sign up! I'm always pleased by the flavor of the sauce and am not hesitant to say this is the best pizza I've ever had in Texas. As for the cheesecake, I also think it's delicious. The cheesecake was creamy and had a nice, firm texture. As far as cheesecake in Dallas goes, it's definitely among the best. The cheesecake at Macaroni Grill may be better. They all make me happy. Cheesecake Factory fails on all counts.

Mushroom Onion Pizza
Cheese Pizza
New York style Cheesecake

Big Al's Smokehouse BBQ by the Tollway & Lemmon

Big Al's Smokehouse BBQ - 2*s

This barbeque place was one of the places I read about in the barbeque blog Full Custom Gospel BBQ. I thought it was.. ok. Honestly, I wouldn't go back. Also, for me, it's certainly too out of the way. The beef just didn't have enough flavor, the same applied to the ribs. We went to a bunch of delicious barbeque places in Lockhart, Texas (near Austin),of which this place fell desperately short. I also always compare ribs to the ribs at Pappa's Bar-B-Q, which are delicious and full of flavor. The ribs were some of the few ribs I've had that weren't very good - they lacked caramalezation and flavor. If you want ribs, I would suggest going to Pappa's instead. I'm usually a fan of meat, so the shredded beef met the bill to a certain extent. The barbeque sauce on the shredded beef was probably what led me to be satiated with that dish. I also filled myself up on bread. I did love the creamed corn. The corn was in some sort of delicious mayonnaise-based sauce. That was actually my favorite part. So.. (since the meat is almost always my favorite part) that's saying something. Don't go to a barbeque place just for the corn. Somehow that seems like blasphemy. As long as you're in the area, the original Sonny Brian's is right down the street. Go there instead. As picky as I am, even I'm happy Sonny Brian's every time.

Shredded beef, sliced beef, creamed corn, fried okra.

Ribs! They look good..

The random BBQ place next to the car dealership. Odd.

Tutti Frutti Frozen Yogurt in Addison, TX (by Sherlocks)

Tutti Frutti - 2 *s

We stopped by this fro-yo place while in Addison. It was.. ok. I wouldn't go back. There are better places in Dallas. It has the normal setup: you choose a bunch of flavors, add toppings, and pay by the pound. So yes, its fine. I like the place by Starbucks at Arapaho & Hillcrest better, Froyo Workshop.  In my opinion, it has better flavors than Tutti Frutti. I did enjoy the atmosphere at Tutti Frutti. It was clean, relaxing, shiny, and quiet. Of course, perhaps it does more business after the bars close. Or perhaps more during the day. They have some TV show-watching events they hold there. These certainly could be a good excuse for a Girls' Night Out.

Pizza and Porchetta (Pork Sandwiches) in NYC - Superbowl weekend

Porchetta - 5 *s!

I read about the porchetta that a town in Italy (somewhere near Rome) specializes in, along with beautiful pictures of the pork on spits, in the cooking magazine La Cucina Italiana. I was convinced (despite my kosher-at-home, anti-swine background)... The magazine also mentioned a restaurant that serves these porchetta sandwiches in the US, Porchetta in Manhattan. I've been dreaming of a trip to devour some porchetta for a while. It was delicious! My Italian friend said he expected it to be good and it was even better. The pork just had a delicious flavor to it, and I'm usually not one for pork. Pork normally seems like a less flavorful white meat to me. Of course, Jews are probably raised not to like pork. The porchetta was deliciously flavored and marbled. The sandwich costs $10, they also have a porchetta platter, mozzarella sandwich, and so on. I can only comment on the sandwich since that's all we had.

As with many places in the Manhattan area, it is a bit of a cramped space. When we arrived, there were 2 people enjoying their meal. I and my friend made 2 more, with one spare seat left in the restaurant, if you could call it that. It's really more of a food stand with walls. Not that you should be deterred. It was amazing, and I would certainly wait in line if I had to. I added a $3 tip after my meal to express my happiness. To traif!

Mmmm pork!
Rosa's Pizza - 5*s!

I had some pizza in Penn Station at Rosa's Pizza. It was pizza stand inside one of those gas station store of sorts. The kind that sells drinks and magazine, along with hot dogs and beer. I chose the margherita pizza. Again, delicious. Pizza in Dallas shouldn't even be called pizza. Maybe the one exception in Dallas is Grimaldi's, but, of course, I still preferred this pizza. It's a different style than the charcoal ovens they use at Grimaldi's. This is the "typical New York-style pizza." Yum! New York is a place where even the pizza in the train station is delicious! It's times like these that food cravings almost make me want to move to New York. The sauce is delicious, and they don't over-cheese their pizza in New York. Even the flavor of the dough is great. I'm the sort who normally throws my crust away. You can taste the freshness of the mozarella, the slight flavor of basil, the wonderfully flavored sauce, and dough that actually drives you to polish off every last crumb. As I always do, let the pictures speak for themselves.

I know, I know. I ranted about how awful Dallas pizza is, which is certainly not a new idea. I can't help it. I feel these pangs of loss...

This is my kind of heaven.