Best of Denton 2013: Eats

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BEST AFFORDABLE DINING

Fuzzy’s Taco Shop

115 Industrial St.

940-380-8226

www.fuzzytacoshop.com

Besides great Baja Tacos and its famous chips, salsa, and queso blanco, Fuzzy’s Taco Shop has a lot to offer. Conveniently located downtown, it makes for the perfect restaurant to stop in and grab some great food. Its menu is designed to excite and delight customers; anyone can find something they like. Fuzzy’s also has a great atmosphere with awesome outdoor seating. Since the restaurant was founded in Fort Worth in 2003, the franchise has been constantly expanding; a new Fuzzy’s is coming to Denton and will be located off of I-35.

Runner-up: Rooster’s Road House

Bragging rights: GreenHouse Restaurant

 

BEST ASIAN DINING

Mr. Chopsticks

1633 Scripture St.

940-382-5437

www.mrchopsticks.com

When Dentonites have a craving to eat some great Asian dining they vote Mr. Chopsticks. For reasons Denton Record-Chronicle readers know best, they can’t stop craving its Asian fusion.

“This is the eighth year in a row that we have been awarded,” said owner Chai Tamprateep. “Thank you Dentonites for voting for us. It makes me feel really honored.”

Located near the University of North Texas, its central hub is a definite plus. Its menu even includes vegetarian, dairy free and gluten-free options. On a nice spring or fall day you can also enjoy sitting outside on the patio, or inside, in the cool on a hot summer day.

Runner-up: Pei Wei

Bragging rights: Andaman Thai Restaurant

 

BEST BARBECUE

Rudy’s Country Store & BBQ

520 Interstate 35 Frontage Rd.

940-484-7839

http://www.rudysbbq.com/page/home

Go inside of Rudy’s Country Store & BBQ off I-35E to learn how Texas meat is cut, cooked and smoked, getting the best of Texas BBQ in one big bite. Denton readers know where to find the best BBQ in town, and have voted this fine country store as best barbeque.

Served in a family-style dining atmosphere with long wooden tables and country music playing over the speakers, the wait staff is better than any ranch hand, making sure any and all needs are met.

Serving brisket, sausage, turkey, ribs, chicken and porkloin, this joint serves up the meat by the pound; or you can order yourself a personal sandwich with any selection of meat inside. Choose from either of their sauces: original or sissy, depending on your tolerance.

Inside, there is also a store where you can buy some of their famous sauce, a t-shirt or a gift card .

Runner-up: Metzler’s Bar-B-Q

Bragging rights: Dickey’s Barbecue Pit

 

BEST BREAKFAST

BEST HOMESTYLE COOKING

Old West Café

1020 Dallas Drive

940-382-8220

www.oldwestcafe.us

Whether it’s the On The Crisp French toast dipped in Almond Crisp batter or Ma’s Pot Roast, Denton residents have flocked to the Old West Café off Dallas Drive, voting it as the best breakfast and homestyle cooking eatery for the sixth straight year.

“We serve a great quality product, in an excellent atmosphere with excellent service,” manager Chris Rowand said.

With the usual suspects of eggs, toast, bacon, sausage and hashbrowns pumped out regularly along with plenty of flapjacks to go around, breakfast continues to keep patrons coming through the doors. Old West’s mix of homestyle food such as chicken fried steak or meatloaf rounds out an already tasty lineup of regular favorites.

Opened in 1997, the Old West Café has specialized in breakfast and lunch. Now, they will venture out into the last meal of the day, as it is extending its hours for dinner in the near future.

(Breakfast) Runner-up: Seven Mile Café

(Breakfast) Bragging rights: Loco Café

(Homestyle) Runner-up: Cartwright’s Ranch House

(Homestyle) Bragging rights: Cracker Barrel Old Country Store

 

BEST BURGER AND FRIES

Denton County Independent Hamburger Company

715 Sunset

940-382-3037

If you’re looking for a great American meal at one of Denton’s longest tenured establishments, look no further than Denton County Independent Hamburger Company. As a staple of Denton’s great eateries, the Best Burger and Fries belong to this restaurant because of the overall high quality ingredients and service. Whether you like your burger pink in the middle or charred all the way around, these hamburgers do not disappoint. With simplicity at its core, the only sides you’ll need are fries and baked beans to round out a home-town favorite meal.

Denton County Independent Hamburger Company is open Monday through Saturday.

Runner-up: Five Guys Burgers and Fries

Bragging rights: RG’s Burgers & Grill

 

BEST BUSINESS LUNCH

GreenHouse Restaurant

600 N. Locust St.

940-484-1349

http://www.greenhouserestaurantdenton.com/

Need a place to take your next client? Denton readers agree that GreenHouse Restaurant is the Best Business Lunch in Denton, where getting your drinks, meal and ticket all in a timely manner in order to get you back in the office is an unspoken key, with each guest given quality service from the wait staff.

Enjoy the patio when the weather feels nice, and grab a drink on a loose Friday to celebrate with your co-workers on another week’s end, selecting from a variety of cocktails, wines and drink specials.

Just north of the Denton Square on Locust Street, GreenHouse offers a menu with selections cooked over a fire mesquite grill, roasting still with the flavors as the meal travels on the plate from the kitchen to the table.

Every Monday from 10 p.m. and 12 a.m. you can also catch some live music if you wish to, according to its website.

Runner-up: Hannah’s Off the Square

Bragging rights: Chestnut Tree

 

BEST CANDY, COOKIE OR CAKE SHOP

Candy Haven

301 N. Interstate I-35 E.

940-565-1474

http://www.candyhavenandcakes.com/

Creativity, it is what sets Candy Haven apart from other cake and candy shops. The family owned and operated shop has brought amazing sweets and treats to Denton for 30 years, and has yet to disappoint. Jane Boyle and her staff put in the time and the hard work to ensure that their customers get the cake creation they want. They specialize in seasonal cakes, cupcakes, wedding cakes, groom cakes, baby shower cakes, and a variety of other pastries. Their delightful creations and hard work have been rewarded; Candy Haven received the Bride’s Choice Award in 2011.

Runner-up: Atomic Candy Store

Bragging rights: Zera Coffee Company

 

BEST COFFEE SHOP

Jupiter House Coffee

106 N. Locust St.

940-387-7100

http://jupiterhousecoffee.com/

Read your morning newspaper and grab a cup of joe at Jupiter House on the Square, or stop by for a late-night study session for a boost-me-up.

The coffee bar is in the far back and local artwork lines the brick exterior walls, and chairs and tables are also spread out so you may chat with friends or plug in a computer at an outlet along the wall.

An outdoor sitting area is available as well, which is nice for a morning cup. Voted Best Coffee Shop four years in a row, it must be the caffeine that keeps its doors open, buzzing its own coffee connection.

Runner-up: Starbucks Coffee Company

Bragging rights: Zera Coffe Company

 

BEST CONVENIENCE STORE/GAS STATION

QuikTrip

Multiple locations

321 Eagle Drive

3113 W. University Drive

3300 E. University Drive

3701 S. Interstate 35E

www.quiktrip.com

Convenience, quality, and easy access are what keep QuikTrip the top choice among voters.

Stop inside one of their four locations in Denton and you can find everything from hot foods to forgotten supplies from a grocery trip to snacks for a road trip to items for an office party.

Stocked to the brim, the store prides itself on meeting the needs of those who stop by. The friendly, professional service keeps customers returning again and again.

Runner-up: Midway Mart

Bragging rights: Race Trac

 

BEST FINE DINING

Hannah’s off the Square

111 West Mulberry St.

940-566-1110

www.hannahsoffthesquare.com

If you haven’t had a basket of white truffle pomme frites or their Caesar salad with kale, you’re missing something. Hannah’s off the Square has long been a Denton favorite with its welcoming, upscale atmosphere with topnotch service.

It’s the place to go for a special anniversary, a popular meeting place and where you take guests or special clients.

Since 2001, the restaurant has continued its tradition of offering delectable treats that satisfy the discerning palate. And if you have a question, Chef Sheena Croft might even pop over to your table to answer. It’s just that kind of service that keeps customers returning time and again. You can also follow her blog from the website as she unveils the latest mouth-watering concoction.

Among their wide-ranging menu items, you can also find seared sea scallops, sesame seed-crusted ahi tuna, cedar-planked salmon, rosemary-smoked duck breast or a 12-oz. prime grilled New York strip — just to name a few specialties.

The restaurant also hosts a 100-mile dinner each year featuring local foods grown and raised within a 100-mile radius of its Denton location. It’s a “can’t miss” event.

You just can’t go wrong with any entrée or visit to Hannah’s.

Runner-up: Greenhouse Restaurant

Bragging rights: Giuseppe’s Italian Restaurant

 

BEST FROZEN TREAT

Beth Marie’s Old Fashioned Ice Cream and Soda Fountain

Denton Courthouse Square

117 W. Hickory Street

940-384-1818

www.bethmaries.com

Unicorn Lake

2900 Wind River Lane

940-591-1010

With more than 60 flavors on the front line, you don’t ever have to have the same experience when you step into Beth Marie’s Old Fashioned Ice Cream and Soda Fountain.

Whether you have a hankering for a regular chocolate ice cream or want to tantalize your taste buds with a new, more inspired treat appropriately titled “Red, Wine and Bleu” featuring port wine and bleu cheese, your taste buds will thank you.

“It’s really great to be name best of Denton,” Ken Willis, co-owner of Beth Marie’s, said. “We strive to be the best and the nation not only with our treats but with the nostalgia memories as well.”

The old time “nostalgic feel” can be found at both locations, on the Square and Unicorn Lake.

Inspiration for new flavors, Willis said, can come from anywhere.

Right now, one of their flavors, “Kayla’s Dark Side” a dark chocolate, is named after Willis’ daughter.

 “You just don’t know what flavors will come about until you start mixing….even an “oops” will sell…you can’t limit yourself when it comes to making a great ice cream,” he said.

Runner-up: Yogurt Story

Bragging rights: Yogurt Fusion

 

BEST ITALIAN DINING

Giuseppe’s Italian Restaurant

821 N. Locust St.

940-381-2712

https://giuseppesitaliana.com/

If you love authentic Italian food, then Giuseppe’s is the place for you. Giuseppe Brownell has taken special care to ensure that each and every customer has an authentic Italian experience based off of what he learned growing up and cooking in the Umbria region of Italy. The restaurant is situated in a quaint Victorian home, and creates a truly Italian environment that most Italian restaurants can only hope to achieve. The dining outdoors is as delightful as inside, featuring a patio and a beautiful Oak Tree. The restaurant is entertaining and the food is the best of its kind. Giuseppe has accomplished what he set out to do, make meals for customers “leisurely affairs which are meant to be relaxing and enjoyable”.

Runner-up: Luigi’s Pizza Italian Restaurant

Bragging rights: Fera’s Pasta & Pizza

 

BEST PIZZA

Mellow Mushroom

217 E. Hickory St.

940-323-1100

Denton has spoken and residents crowned Mellow Mushroom as the 2013 Best of Denton for pizza.

“That’s awesome. We definitely want to be the number one pizza joint in town. It’s something we take a lot of pride in,” said manager Levon Juarez.

Thinking on what makes Mellow Mushroom different from the other pizza places in town, Juarez noted the original hand-tossed dough, the ability for customers to see their order made in front of them, an open kitchen and ingredients Juarez said, outweigh the competition.

“We appease to the meat lovers and vegetarians (with) a wide variety of selections for everybody there. Juarez said there are even gluten-free options.

True to the name, Juarez said the atmosphere in the restaurant is laid back and well, mellow.A feature of Mellow Mushroom is its beer club. Once a person has finished tasting all 70 beers, they are given a shirt and their name is put on the wall. “It’s way beyond food. We have a full set -ups and service bar, wide selection of beers on draft and in bottles. It’s a different outlook. It’s a little bit of an upscale pizza place but for the most part a real laid back atmosphere,” Juarez said. “They have a variety of places to choose. We want to go above and beyond their expectations and make sure we are making their day whenever they come in. That’s what will keep us around for years to come.”

Runner-up: JJ’s Pizza

Bragging rights: Palio’s Pizza Denton

 

BEST SANDWICH SHOP/DELI

Weinberger’s Delicatessen

311 E. Hickory St. 

940-566-5900

www.weinbergersdeli.com

Show your face around Weinberger’s Deli enough and you just might get a sandwich named after you. It’s that type of ingenuity and connection with its customers that earned this deli Denton’s Best for the second straight year.

This Chicago-style deli is centrally located on Denton’s East Hickory Street and has quickly commanded Denton residents’ attention with its top-notch ingredients along with their illustrious menu that is constantly being updated.

Currently, the menu board hanging from the ceiling shows the 20 most popular sandwiches such as Cathy’s California Club, but it’s the knowledge of what’s not on the menu that keeps some devoted customers coming back with a paper menu of over 120 selections.

Sandwiches can get their names from anyone with one called “The Claytron,” which is named after an Oak Street Draft House bartender and Frenchy’s Dip, which bares the local lawn care legend Andre J. “Frenchy” Rheault’s nickname.

With new sandwiches being created regularly, stop by Weinburger’s to see if you can lend your name to the latest sandwich concoction.

Runner-up: New York Sub-Hub

Bragging rights: Jason’s Deli

 

BEST SEAFOOD

Frilly’s Seafood Bayou Kitchen

1925 Denison Street

940-243-2126

www.frillysdenton.com

Alligator tail, frog legs and etouffée can only mean one of two things; you found yourself back at the bayou in Louisiana oryou’ve just stepped inside the #1 voted seafood restaurant in Denton.

Frilly’s Seafood Bayou Kitchen has been dishin’ up southern Cajun food one can only typically find in the heart of New Orleans right outside your door.

Some of their more known specialties include jumbo shrimp brochette- bacon wrapped shrimp stuffed with a jalapeño sliver and jack cheese, alongside lemon garlic butter and dirty rice or the Blackened Catfish St. Charles; topped with crawfish and crabmeat in an herb butter cream sauce.

Frilly’s says it’s all in the sauce.

Creole sauces are creamy and full-flavored with the rich use of herbs and spices. Cajun cooking is, generally speaking, a countrified version of Creole cuisine, according to their website.

“When put together the right way, this wonderful food is a melange of artistry and talent, developed and made possible by the nations and cultures who settled in and around New Orleans,” their site says.

A fixture in Denton for more than 10 years and the food is still bringing us the best combination of spice and soul.

Runner-up: Dani Rae’s

Bragging rights: Hoochie’s

 

BEST STEAK

Texas Roadhouse

2817 Interstate 35 Frontage Rd

940-243-7427

As the first location in I-35’s Restaurant Row, Texas Roadhouse debuted in Denton in 2002 and has been meeting the city’s steak needs since then.

When you walk into the Texas Roadhouse, you might feel a peanut shell or two crunch beneath your feet as you enter to see a glass case full of a bouquet of steaks.

Texas Roadhouse prides itself on their hand-cut steaks that are cut daily and cooked over open gas-fired grills to your desire. Whether it’s a filet, sirloin or porterhouse t-bone, you can’t take a bite of your steak until your waiter makes sure it’s cooked to your specifications. With steaks from six ounces to 20, there’s a steak for everyone. And if steak isn’t your fancy, try the Fall-Off-The-Bone Ribs, burgers, BBQ chicken, fried catfish or country fried chicken. Add in Texas Roadhouse’s “Legendary Sides” such as baked and sweet potatoes, chili and salads to go along with a kids menu and you’ve got the entire family covered.

Runner-up: Outback Steakhouse

Bragging rights: Hannah’s Off the Square

 

BEST TEX-MEX

Chuy’s

3300 Wind River Lane

940-228-0555

www.chuys.com

Is it real fresh, authentic Tex-Mex cuisine you crave? Then look no further.Chuy’s has limitless options to satisfy your Tex-Mex cravings; be it in house freshly made tortillas or their signature enchiladas with “boom boom” sauce.

Chuy’s was voted “Best of Denton” for their eclectic atmosphere and simply tantalizing your taste buds with the best Tex-Mex has to offer.

No two Chuy’s are the same, and that’s what many customers say makes their visit there one of a kind.All locations do contain trademark pieces, according to the chain’s website, and are host to the infamous “Elvis Shrine.”

Elvis fans can rejoice, their dedication to the “King of Rock and Roll” doesn’t stop there.The menu features The Elvis Presley Memorial Combo: a beef Tex-Mex enchilada, cheese ranchero enchilada, chicken tomatillo enchilada and a seasoned ground sirloin crispy taco with chips dipped in chile con queso.

The restaurant’s whole kitchen is stocked with the freshest ingredients and delivers them directly to your table…right down to the salsa made every hour. You have been warned, come with an appetite.

Runner up: El Matador

Bragging rights: El Guapo’s

 

BEST VEGGIE FARE/HEALTH FOOD

Cupboard Natural Foods & Café

200 W. Congress

940-387-5386

www.cupboardnaturalfoods.com

Since 1965, Cupboard Natural Foods and Café has been the “go to” place for a full range of natural and organic food, supplements and body care products.

With 11,000 square feet, there is plenty to choose from among the gluten-free products, local grass-fed meats, poultry and pork, local eggs, a selection of “raw foods,” and a produce department that is certified organic and local pesticide free.

Cupboard recently remodeled their vitamin supplement area with additional space for shoppers to browse.

The café offers a delicious daily menu for breakfast, lunch and dinner with a full-service salad bar many describe as “phenomenal.” They use as much organics as possible in the salad bar with the freshest ingredients. About 99 percent of the menu items in the café are made fresh daily, says Paul Tanis, general manager.

The bakery specializes in fresh gluten-free, vegan or traditional baked goods.

 “I’d like to say thank you to our customers for their loyal support for over 40 years,” Tanis says. “Our focus is customer service and taking care of our community and being a part of the community.”

Runner-up: The Greenhouse Restaurant

Bragging rights: The Bowllery

 

BEST WINGS

Wingstop

Multiple Locations

2710 W. University Drive, No. 1012

940-566-0007

2430 S. I-35E, No. 100

940-483-9464

www.wingstop.com

In the inaugural year of the best wings category, Wingstop takes the crown as the “Wing Experts” turn chicken wings into a delectable art.

With 10 flavors to choose from including original hot or garlic parmesan in either the classic bone-in or boneless style, you can’t go wrong.

Throw in some fresh-cut seasoned fries with Wingstop’s signature fry, lemon pepper or Cajun seasoning and you have the makings for the best wing meal in town. Along with a few sides such as bourbon baked beans, creamy cole slaw and potato salad, Wingstop might have a stranglehold on the category for years to come.

Runner-up: Buffalo Wild Wings

Bragging rights: Boomer Jacks

 

 


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