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What's Heating Up Dallas' Food Scene This Month

DALLAS (HOODLINE) -- Want the dirt on Dallas's most happening local spots?

We took a data-driven look at the question, using Yelp to discover which local businesses have been in the limelight this month.

To find out who made the list, we looked at Dallas businesses on Yelp by category and counted how many reviews each received. Rather than compare them based on number of reviews alone, we calculated a percentage increase in reviews over the past month, and tracked businesses that consistently increase their volume of reviews to identify statistically significant outliers compared to past performance.

Read on to see which spots are getting plenty of attention, right now.

In the know: What's heating up Dallas's food scene this month by Hoodline on YouTube


Photo: britany c./Yelp

Open since June, this cocktail bar, sushi bar and pan Asian spot is trending compared to other businesses categorized as "Cocktail Bars" on Yelp.

Citywide, cocktail bars saw review counts increase by a median of 2.9 percent over the past month, but Imoto saw an 18 percent increase, maintaining a strong four-star rating throughout. Moreover, on a month-to-month basis review counts increased by more than 370 percent.

It's not the only trending outlier in the cocktail bar category: Merchant House has seen a 21.7 percent increase in reviews.

Located at 2400 Victory Park Lane in Near East, Imoto offers an upscale Asian dining experience with ambiance and cuisine. The menu is overseen by chef Kent Rathbun and visitors will find signature, vegan, seafood and land options, plus there's a raw bar and sushi. Try the Little Sister's Korean Fried Chicken with gochujang butter and honey soy glaze, or the grilled lamb curry clay pot with cucumber-mint raita, pitas and garbanzo beans. Imoto also has an extensive wine and spirits menu. (Check out the entire menu here.)


Photo: ruins/Yelp

Whether or not you've been hearing buzz about Northeast Dallas's Ruins, the bar and Mexican spot is a hot topic according to Yelp review data.

While businesses categorized as "Bars" on Yelp increased their review count by a median of 2.4 percent over the past month, Ruins bagged an 11.9 percent increase in reviews within that timeframe, maintaining a strong 4.5-star rating. It significantly outperformed the previous month by gaining 2.0 times more reviews than expected based on its past performance.

There's more that's trending on Dallas's bar scene: Bishop Cidercade has seen a 10.7 percent increase in reviews.

Open at 2653 Commerce St. since April, Ruins offers a menu full of Mexican, Caribbean and South American inspirations, including tacos, tortas, salads, tapas-style items and serves breakfast daily until 3 p.m. Don't forget to order off the drink menu, which has agave, rum from 10 different nations and other spirits and beer from Central and South America and the Caribbean.

#getfried fry cafe

Photo: lisa e./Yelp

Northeast Dallas's #getfried fry cafe is also making waves. Open since May at 2656 Main St., Suite 130, the traditional American spot has seen an 11.8 percent bump in reviews over the last month, compared to a median review increase of 2.5 percent for all businesses tagged "American (Traditional)" on Yelp. Moreover, on a month-to-month basis review counts increased by more than 200 percent.

#getfried fry cafe offers french fries topped with sirloin, sauteed onions, sweet peppers, mushrooms and melted cheese, as well as pulled pork or chicken and barbecue sauce and more. The menu also has finger foods like buffalo crunch rolls, chicken fingers and burgers. Over the past month, it's maintained a solid four-star rating among Yelpers.


Photo: kristen s./Yelp

Northeast Dallas's Vidorra is the city's buzziest Mexican spot by the numbers.

The well-established cocktail bar and New Mexican and Mexican spot, which opened at 2642 Main St. in August, increased its review count by 13 percent over the past month, an outlier when compared to the median review increase of 2.7 percent for the Yelp category "Mexican."

It's not the only trending outlier in the Mexican category: Twisted Trompo has seen a 12.7 percent increase in reviews.

Vidorra offers fajitas, quesadillas and tacos and the bar is stocked with beer, tequilla and an almost endless list of margarita drinks. If you are in the mood for seafood, give the shrimp and tamale cakes a whirl as they come with housemade corn cakes, jumbo sauteed shrimp, pico de gallo, avocado, salsa verde and southwestern cream, or, if you are more of a landlubber, look at the guajillo smoked chicken  with asada veggies, Oaxacan cheese, corn, shallots and chipotle guajillo sauce. (Click here to view the full menu.)

Unleavened Fresh Kitchen

Photo: unleavened fresh kitchen/Yelp

Northeast Dallas's well-established Unleavened Fresh Kitchen is currently on the upswing in the breakfast and brunch category on Yelp.

While businesses categorized as "Breakfast & Brunch" on Yelp increased review counts by a median of 2.5 percent over the past month, this breakfast and brunch spot, which offers salads and sandwiches, increased its by 6.7 percent—and kept its rating consistent at 4.5 stars. Review counts increased by more than 380 percent on a month-to-month basis.

Open for business at 1900 Abrams Parkway since 2015, the business offers healthy fare like salads and wraps. Menu standouts include the Clubhouse wrap (roasted turkey, pepper bacon, lettuce, garden sprouts, tomato, avocado and Harissa crema), the Southwestern fajita steak (peppers, onions, red cabbage, hominy, pico de gallo, cotija, avocado and salsa) and the grilled sweet corn as a side.

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