The Independent Voice of Southern Methodist University Since 1915

The Daily Campus

The Daily Campus

The Independent Voice of Southern Methodist University Since 1915

The Daily Campus

The Independent Voice of Southern Methodist University Since 1915

The Daily Campus

My quest to learn the musical instrument struck a chord much greater than the beautiful sound of a perfect stroke.
I decided to learn the guitar, but I walked away learning more about life
Bella Edmondson, Staff Editor • June 19, 2024

Delicious delicacies on the dollar in Dallas

On nearly every street corner in Dallas, a restaurant, café or coffee shop can be found. This thriving city rumbles with thousands of amazing places to eat and relax. Dallas has anything from The Mansion to Burger House, offering a wide variety of taste, location and price to fit anyone. Whether you share your meals in Uptown or down the street, one thing stands out: whatever your budget and your taste, Dallas is the place to eat.

However, for a typical college student, newly experiencing the freedom of independence and a budget, the windows of price and location could be a factor. People want to eat well, healthy, cheaply and enjoy the time they spend.

With independence comes responsibility. So to fit your checkbook and to fill your stomachs these five restaurants might suit you. Plus, a meal at one of these places only costs about $10 and is only minutes from campus.

Fireside Pies, Eatzi’s, Patrizio’s, South Dallas Café and Nandina stand out for their affordability, atmosphere, customer service, location and food. But all five restaurants differ in their environment, their dishes and their story. But you are sure to enjoy your time by the prices that you pay and the environment that surrounds you.

Fireside Pies’ shady patio facing Henderson Avenue is the perfect venue for a cool dinner in Dallas. When you walk in and see the limited tables inside, surrounded by the cozy atmosphere, it looks like a replica from the set of Friends. But soon your thoughts are distracted by the aroma of fresh ingredients constantly pouring out from the open kitchen.

Dallas realizes that Fireside Pies is the place to eat. Dining at peak times might mean a wait. But many people just pass the time with a drink in one hand, surrounded by friends not seeming to mind.

Fireside’s pies are made daily with the most flavorful local ingredients. Italian sausage from East Dallas’ Jimmy’s Food Store, fresh mozzarella from Paula Lambert’s Mozzarella Company in Deep Ellum and market tomatoes from East Texas flank the kitchen counters daily. Manager Victor Hayes says, “Fireside Pies is committed to using from scratch recipes, old world cooking methods and fresh, seasonally attuned ingredients.”

Critics say that Fireside’s pies are definitely “knife-and-fork pizzas” since there are nearly one inch-thick slices of tomato overwhelming each bite. Even though its powerful taste and size win customers, many agree that the pizzas are hard to eat.

Everything at Fireside Pies bursts with size and flavor. Nearly all salads and sandwiches are big enough to share, but if you want variety, try the Oven Sampler. It includes Jimmy’s sausage, Ms. Lambert’s mozzarella, prosciutto, roasted red peppers, roasted cremini mushrooms, Italian peppers and olives. Fireside’s calls it an appetizer, but it could easily be a meal.

The atmosphere and decorations give the place a very casual feel, making it a great hangout. The windows let in enough outside light to make you feel comfortable in just jeans and a t-shirt. It’s a great place to relax, even though you feel like you’re in an upscale restaurant.

One of the hottest places in Dallas to get the taste and quality of a home cooked meal is Eatzi’s. In 1996, it opened in Dallas with an international reputation as a vendor, not a restaurant. Eatzi’s manager says that it is “Food for taking. It’s all chef prepared; take it home and say it’s your own.”

Located on Oak Lawn Avenue, Eatzi’s thrives on how they do business, inform consumers about new food and pride themselves on having some of the best bread in town.

With customers constantly flowing in and out of the door, the place may look a little hectic. Fortunately, they prepared for this. They have stations serving different meal components, such as cold salads, pastries, made-to-order sandwiches, cheeses, breads, entrees ready to be taken home and heated, and hot foods ready to be eaten on the spot.

After picking up their food, customers can eat inside, at the bar or outside to enjoy the weather. Sophomore Blake Beshore says, “When I’m on the go, Eatzi’s is the place to get food, because it’s fast and affordable.”

Besides having great food, Eatzi’s rotates grocery items, exotic oils, crackers, sauces and breads daily.

Patrizio’s, a simple and easygoing Italian restaurant in Highland Park Village serenades customers with its beautiful outside patio, its bustling bar and its picturesque atmosphere inside. Patrizio’s daily welcomes new and old faces.

Patrizio’s old-school charm provides a unique dining experience at an affordable price. Once you get out of your car and inside, you are in great hands. Chef Brad Albers splits his time between Patrizio’s and Cafe Pacific, providing each with fabulous dishes and quite a reputation. If nothing on the menu appeals to you, Albers is more than happy to fix any type of pasta to accommodate his customers.

Many agree that it’s just the place for a little pasta and a glass of wine. The menu contains all the basics like baked ziti, lasagna, salads, Italian seafood appetizers, and spaghetti. But it brings novelty dishes, such as, primavera with grilled vegetables to the table as well. Critics recommend trying the Angel-hair pasta with artichoke.

The restaurant décor is equally classy and simple. It’s tree-lined and naturally lit outside patio welcomes everyone. “The patio gives the restaurant a really unique and personal atmosphere. It is so calming and enjoyable to eat outside with a group of friends,” says Missy Mooty, a sophomore.

Patrizio’s conveniently opens at 11 a.m., greeting people late into the night. Patrizio’s director Enam Chowdhury says, “Make Patrizio’s your home away from home.”

Come to Patrizio’s for a close meal; it is only in Highland Park Village. Be prepared for a short wait, a little bit of noise, and a fabulous meal with a bubbling atmosphere. One last bit of advice: the biscotti are worth your taste.

South Dallas Café changes its menu daily, depending on the chef’s mood, all according to the weather. The atmosphere’s soul and southern charm is parallel to its cooking. So, you could find one of these on the menu: beefy meat loaf, sliced thick and served with hearty tomato gravy; smothered pork chops in pan gravy; chicken and dumplings; bone-in pork chops tender enough to cut with a fork; fried chicken in a crispy, spicy batter; succulent baked turkey wings and baked chicken; or spaghetti in a down-home tomato-meat sauce with lots of onion.

The soul food rarely runs out and sweet tea and lemonade accompany the meal. The desserts range from peach cobbler to pound cake and sweet potato pie and only cost $1. The cobbler is the only constant dessert; the others change as often as the weather does.

This new café is located in the heart of South Dallas and less than 10 minutes from campus.

Nandina is known for its “I don’t want to share” Thai food, outgoing staff and relaxing atmosphere. New renovations changed the building, menu and hours to make this restaurant an ideal place for night owls, Lower Greenville bar-hoppers, and late night studiers to come grab a bite to eat until 3 a.m. .

Like many Asian restaurants, the food is served “family style.” However, many critics agree that once you taste the food you won’t want to pass it on.

Dishes range anywhere from sashimi and rice salad, sushi-grade tuna, smoked salmon, albacore, shrimp and avocado over sweet, sticky rice, Lamb chops, sea bass with ginger tamari glaze, steamed pork and shrimp dumplings or miso-marinated Kobe beef.

Chef and owner Waka’s ability to blend East and West cultures proves itself at Nandina. But his ability to blend architecture and atmosphere is even more evident. Waka teamed up with many others to completely transform the space, adding a dining loft for private parties, as well as a new outdoor dining deck for good weather. Natural lighting on granite floor tiles, framed wall mirrors and plenty of open space transform this restaurant that used t
o feel like a dungeon with good food.

The customer service in this newly renovated space lacks no enthusiasm. The wait staff constantly shows professionalism and preparedness to answer any questions. The combinations of food, atmosphere, pricing and staffing at Nandina is remarkably well-balanced.

Dallas teems with thousands of restaurants nearly overlapping each other on every corner. These five restaurants will hopefully leave you with a full stomach and a full wallet. One thing remains certain though: wherever you eat, whatever your budget and whatever your taste, Dallas is the place to find the perfect restaurant for you. Fireside Pies, Eatzi’s, Patrizio’s, South Dallas Café and Nandina stand out for their affordability, atmosphere, customer service, location and of course the food that they prepare and are proud of.

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