The situation is all too familiar: You and your girlfriends are on a group text, trying to figure out where to have lunch. Chances are you're looking for a place that offers great food, good people watching and, perhaps, an atmosphere that will generate a beautiful Instagram picture. Am I right?
Lucky for all you lunching ladies, there are plenty of restaurants in Dallas for a leisurely and lovely midday meal. Here's our list of the best places to get dressed up and dine with your besties — where it's never too early for a little bubbly.
Described as an elevated European bistro, the restaurant offers dishes inspired by French, Italian and Spanish cuisine. The location, in the heart of Highland Park Village, is the perfect perch to watch the people strolling through the luxury shopping center. Whether it's a salad or steak frites, the meal is always spot-on, especially when washed down with a carefully crafted cocktail.
This is the newcomer in the bunch, as the group behind the avant garde floral and gift shop expanded its repertoire last fall with a restaurant next door. Sharon Hage designed the menu, and Chad Martin mans the kitchen, turning out well-composed dishes such as spring Swiss chard frittata with saffron ricotta toast and lobster parsnip chowder.
This New York import serves elevated French fare in a light and bright white tablecloth environment. Try the lobster roll, crab and avocado salad, or cold poached salmon. An impressive wine list makes it easy to spend a leisurely afternoon on the patio catching up with friends.
This intimate European bistro, decorated with recycled and reclaimed antiques from all over the world, is tucked away in the Harwood District. Start the meal with a glass of wine and charcuterie board or bruschetta; for a lighter option, there is a lovely salad with asparagus, lemon vinaigrette and organic soft-boiled egg. If the weather is right, stake a claim on the patio and settle in for an espresso or digestif.
Rise No. 1
Whether you crave sweet or savory, this soufflé temple at Inwood Village hits the spot. Located in a prime Park Cities location, the pretty restaurant also serves soups such as marshmallow and French onion, entrée-sized salads, and a selection of cheeses — and if you like the ceramics on which they are served, those are available for purchase. Seltzer is house-made, lemonade is fresh-squeezed, and wine and champagne can be done by flight.
If the T Room were a high school senior, it would definitely be nominated as most attractive in the yearbook. The polished eatery befits its Forty Five Ten address, and it's always packed with fabulously dressed women enjoying signature panini, quiche and salads — conveniently available in myriad combos. Post-lunch, a shopping spree may be in order.
True Food Kitchen
This restaurant at the Plaza at Preston Center has been packed since its arrival in Dallas in late 2013. The food here is healthier but still tastes good, such as the quinoa burger with a side of kale. This may be the most kid-friendly spot on the list, as we commonly see moms in their Lululemon workout gear, babies on hip, searching for their girlfriends. The bright, plant-infused decor reminds us of a spring day in LA.
Zodiac at Neiman Marcus Downtown
This is Dallas' palace for ladies who lunch. Located on the sixth floor of Neiman Marcus downtown, the beautiful environs provide respite from the bustle of Main Street. The meal still begins with complimentary consomme and a popover with strawberry butter, which can be followed by salad, sandwich or heartier entrée such as chicken paillard Milanese. Diners always seem to be enjoying a glass of champagne, because the occasion calls for it.
A Parisian-inspired bistro with a New York edge, Parigi has been doing its thing for three decades. The menu changes every other week based on what's in season and guest feedback, but signature items remain, including beef tenderloin, fish of the week and the famous Caesar salad. Chef-owner Janice Provost has been steadfast in her mission to make this restaurant the most welcoming in the neighborhood.