Dallas Specialty

Specialty neighborhood
Gourmet Valet
Gourmet Valet Head Chef Becky Nelson was a stay-at-home mom before she started her meal delivery business, and the dishes (beef filets, chicken chowder with cornbread, and seriously good dessert) definitely have a home-cooked feel to them. Each order rings in at around $15, a price that is easily justified considering each meal comes with multiple complementary sides. While many of her meals fall solidly in the healthy and gluten-free category, Nelson is also the genius behind Dallas-based Nieman Marcus’ signature holiday shortbread cookies.
Houndstooth Coffee
1900 N. Henderson Ave., Lower Greenville
It's easy to fall for the décor in Houndstooth, which features a wooden herringbone bar, Scandinavian-style furniture, and clusters of Edison bulbs. The overall effect is really minimalist, which is great, because it lets their extremely well-researched and perfectly executed coffee shine. Nice touch: the coffee cups have adorable silhouettes of Texas that you'll see when you make it to the bottom of the cup. There are also locations in Austin (in Rosedale and Downtown).
316 W. 7th St., Bishop Arts District
Oddfellows is a celebrated brunch institution in Dallas—on Saturdays, the wait for their duck chilaquiles and fried chicken is hours-long. But stop by in the morning or afternoon during the week and you'll find a quiet coffeehouse, perfect for nursing a coffee and emptying out a full inbox (the WiFi is just as strong outside on their patio). They're especially proud of their espresso, which is made in a gleaming, luxury La Marzocco machine.
Opening Bell Coffee
1409 S. Lamar St., South Dallas
Every town needs an arty coffee shop with open mic night and free WiFi—with eclectic décor, oversized couches, and great coffee, Opening Bell is straight out of central casting. While the extremely full entertainment calendar makes this more of a daytime study location, there are plenty of tables, so you can find a seat even late in the afternoon. You'll also find all the requisite snacks and drinks, including a long tea menu, doughnuts, and a weirdly good breakfast taco.
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