When critics decide what makes a restaurant great, they usually focus on the trinity of food, service, and atmosphere. Those were surely among the factors weighed when we compiled our Top 100 — a comprehensive list of the very best restaurants in Dallas.
But there are other elements that can persuade you to frequent a restaurant, such as proximity or convenience. For some diners, hours can be key. They want restaurants that go beyond the prototypical 11 am-10 pm hours that most places observe. And it needs to be something a little more serious than Denny's.
Here's a list of restaurants, pulled from our Top 100, that stretch the dining zone to meet those needs.
Ignore the weekdays, when this happening Quadrangle spot closes at a staid 9:30 pm. Instead, look to Fridays and Saturdays, when they best everyone by staying open until a party-pleasing 3 am.
Del Frisco's Grille
Casual McKinney Avenue spot stays open until 11 pm Monday through Saturday. That extra hour really helps, especially in the early part of the week when everyone else wimps out.
The original branch of this trail-blazing pizzeria chain on Henderson Avenue has always been a welcoming after-hours refuge, with hours until 11 pm on weeknights and midnight on weekends.
Not only does this highly rated bistro rank No. 2 on our Top 100 list, it stays open until 1 am, making it a favorite for late-night dates and service-industry pals.
Goodfriend Beer Garden & Burger House
With its bar profile and emphasis on beer, it's no surprise that this East Dallas hangout stays open late: until midnight on weekdays — Sundays too — and until 2 am Thursday-Saturday.
Victory Park sushi spot endures as an oasis through the ebb and flow of concerts and other events at American Airlines Center, with hours until 11 pm on weeknights and midnight on weekends.
Sophisticated beer spot from restaurateur Shannon Wynne serves its Design District neighbors well by staying open until midnight Monday-Thursday and until 1 am on Fridays and Saturdays.
Mercat closes at 10 pm, which is pretty standard. But this Harwood International canteen opens extra-early at 7:30 am, and then stays open all day, Monday-Friday.
On the Lamb
Deep Ellum restaurant stays true to its after-hours neighborhood with night-owl hours, staying open until 11 pm on weeknights and 2 am on weekends.
Greenville Avenue soda shop wins the hours prize by burning the candle at both ends: It opens early at 10 am on Friday through Sunday, and it also stays open until midnight every night.
Richardson sushi spot closes at 10:30 pm Monday-Saturday, which might be tame compared to others. But precious few places in the 'burbs stay open past 10. The 'burbs need their late-night nosh too.
Is VT a bar with great food, or is it a restaurant with a fabulous bar? Whatever it is, it's open until a crowd-pleasing midnight Monday through Saturday.
Not many chef-driven places stay open late, but this Greenville Avenue restaurant featuring the culinary stylings of Graham Dodds stays open until midnight Thursday through Saturday.