Pantego Bay’s etouffee was swimming with perfectly cooked crawfish. Photo by Lisa Warner.

Get There Fast, Take it Slow

Pantego Bay relies on fresh seafood, not gimmicks.
Lauren Phillips
I didn’t pull up to Pantego Bay in an especially generous mood. Few roads lead to the town of Pantego, and getting there during weekday rush hour traffic can be a frustrating exercise. My guests and I converged, at long last,...

Tokyo Joe’s Cali poke roll (center) is a delicious bargain. Photo by Lee Chastain.

Hey, Joe

Build-your-own Japanese cuisine brings its clean eating concept to the Waterside development.
Laurie Barker James
About 20 years ago, Larry Leith opened Tokyo Joe’s, a Colorado-based Japanese restaurant franchise with a focus on clean eating –– somewhat of a novelty back in the ’90s. Joe’s first Texas outpost opened last month in...

Tuk Tuk Thai serves big portions and big flavors. Photo by Lee Chastain.


Tuk Tuk Thai’s menu of reasonably priced entry-level Thai favorites is perfect student grub.
Lauren Phillips
UT has Guadalupe Street, TCU has West Berry, UNT has Fry –– half the fun of higher learning comes from the seedy edges of the ubiquitous college strip, where pitchers of suds and tattoo parlors gobble up the dregs of that s...

Photo by Kayla Stigall.

Harmonious Trio

This fine dining spot is a reason to go to Colleyville.
Kristian Lin
What a joy it is to find a great restaurant in an unexpected place. The Trio New American Restaurant’s address lists it in Colleyville, though right across the street is a large sign proclaiming its own place in North Richlan...

Papaya’s street taco sampler is big on flavor and low on cost. Photo by Lee Chastain.

¡Viva Papaya!

There’s a lot to like about the small, family-owned restaurant in Arlington.
Papaya Mexican Grill is a thriving little joint in Southeast Arlington, an area full of independent ethnic eateries. The restaurant is owned by the three brothers Chiffer and their unrelated partner, Zantoz Mexia. At least thre...

Jumra Kabab’s gyro plate is spiced with garlic and cinnamon. Photo by Lee Chastain.


Jumra Kabab doesn’t water down its authentic Turkish fare.
After my first attempt to dine at Jumra Kabab was derailed by a gas line issue, I skulked and sulked hungrily away, annoyed that I would have to make a return visit all the way out to North Arlington to review a kabab shop. Sin...

Co-owner Demarcus Davis serves one of Taste N See’s signature chicken and waffle dishes. Photo by Lee Chastain.

Holy Waffles

Taste and see that the food is good at this small, soulful eatery.
It’s easy to drive right past Taste N See Chicken & Waffles. Located in a strip mall on Altamesa Boulevard, the eatery opened in June on a street that’s jammed with fast-food joints, storage places, and dollar stores. A...

HG Sply Co.’s chicken legs are perfectly crisped. Photo by Steve Steward.


HG Sply Co. serves a fresh, fast, upscale take on man’s prehistoric diet.
Steve Steward
If you’ve never heard of the “paleo diet,” or your dashboard is so covered with Whataburger wrappers that any kind of “diet” sounds like a joke in need of a punchline, “paleo” is a cooking and eating routine that ...

The Thai Boat Noodle Soup is one of the many traditional offerings you won’t find at a westernized Thai eatery. Photo by Lee Chastain.

Utterly Charming

This new Haltom City Thai eatery’s devotion to tradition and excellent service stand out.
Thai Charm Cuisine sits in a Haltom City strip mall that is home to a group of ethnic restaurants. Over the last two decades, many different Vietnamese, boba tea, and Thai joints (and a now-defunct Asian supermarket) have made ...

Oni Ramen serves upscale noodles until 4 a.m. on Friday and Saturday. Photo courtesy of Oni Ramen.

Demonic Noodles

Oni Ramen brings Texas heat to Japanese cuisine.
Chances are your relationship with ramen was forged back in your college days, when the cheap and easy meals were synonymous with the make-believe poverty of campus life. Or, perhaps you lost your way a bit and became acquainte...