“The heirloom vegetable salad was an impeccable mélange of textures and flavors.” Photo by Lee Chastain.

The good thing about dining off the Trinity Trail in the new bustling Clearfork development is that it inspires smart choices — the area teems with bikers, walkers, and runners. But cocktails, house-made potato chips, and all other sorts of guilty gustatory pleasures also abound.

For a belated Mother’s Day lunch last week, I took my 67-year-old mom to the newish Press Café (4801 Edwards Ranch Rd., Ste. 105, 817-570-6002). She’s a tough critic. Last year, we went to Café Modern and sat by a window near the water. But since our waiter told us they don’t serve sweet tea, the Modern’s ranking dropped precipitously. We had better luck at Press Café.

Just after the lunch rush, sitting in a booth near a wall of windows overlooking a patio filled with fire pits and flowering clay pots, my mom said she felt just the right amount of fancy and ranchy; fancy because her turkey burger ($13) came out just right, with Fontina cheese on a brioche bun and accompanied by those house-made potato chips. It’s big, too. Like something an avid runner or biker might eat to refuel, if you’re into that sort of craziness.


“It’s seasoned well and it’s juicy,” Mom added. “And just the right temperature.”

That’s some high praise — she’s been eating burgers in Texas for decades.

I had the Trailhead Chicken Salad ($14), a smallish bowl of wild greens tossed with organic rotisserie chicken (so tender it fell off the fork), hefty chunks of bacon, pine nuts, and Point Reyes blue cheese. I felt so guilt-free with my entrée that I had nearly no remorse ordering the carrot cake ($8). This is where a previous run around the Trinity would have come in handy. Covered in cream cheese icing and walnuts, the dessert melted in my mouth. As my mom said: “perfection.” And the slice was so big that she had plenty to take home and share with my dad (well, maybe).

Staring at the full bar across from our booth and its row of cowhide barstools, my mom said, “I think a lot of people just come here to drink.” Excellent idea, Mom. That’s exactly what I’ll be doing next time I visit. Our hip server, Woods (yes, that was actually his name), said Press Café’s most popular drink is the Basil Cap No. 1 ($10). Anchored by Hanson’s Cucumber Vodka and infused with lemon, basil, celery, ginger beer, and a few other fanciful flavors, it makes boozing healthy. Er, healthy-ish.

The ranchy feel comes from the woodgrain décor, walls of windows, concrete floors, and tree-lined views, which attracts both sixtysomething Kate Spade sorts and hipsters in flip-flops. The restaurant has 90 seats downstairs and 100 upstairs, plus ample seating outdoors — which really makes this place worth the trip. It’s also right next to Mellow Johnny’s Bike Shop, you know, in case you’re inspired by all the passing spandex to stop drinking and start working out.

Owner and Executive Chef Felipe Armenta is spreading his good taste and talent for fine dining across the city in quick haste. He already runs Pacific Table and The Tavern, and later this summer he will open Cork & Pig in the West 7th corridor.

Maybe that’ll be our next Mother’s Day adventure. But we’ll be hard pressed to beat the carrot cake, turkey burger, and quality time we shared off the Trinity Trail. –– Sarah Angle


Your regular Chow, Baby columnist will return in a few weeks.