Courtesy photo

Texas restaurants are well-represented on Bon Appetit’s list of America’s 50 Best New Restaurants for 2022. Seven Lone Star State establishments earn the magazine's approval.

They are:

  • Birdie’s, a counter service restaurant in Austin known for its seasonal menu and well-chosen list of natural wines
  • Canje, the Caribbean restaurant in Austin from star chef Tavel Bristol-Joseph
  • El Rincon del Maiz, a taqueria in Garland that serves vegan tacos on seven different types of corn tortillas
  • La Onda, chef Victor Villarreal’s Latin-inspired seafood restaurant in Fort Worth that includes dry-aged fish among its offerings
  • March, the Houston fine dining restaurant dedicated to tasting menus inspired by different regions of the Mediterranean
  • The Nicolett, a Lubbock restaurant that serves "High Plains Cuisine" in the form of dishes such as elk tartare and house-made pappardelle stuffed with avocado
  • Reese Bros. Barbecue, a San Antonio food truck that pairs classic Texas barbecue with Mexican-inspired sides

The strong showing represents an improvement over 2019, when only four Texas restaurants made the list. The magazine skipped a Best New Restaurants list in 2021, instead recognizing restaurants that showed leadership during the pandemic with its Head of the Table awards.

The magazine's editors express optimism about the state of dining in America. They note that a broader range of immigrant culinary traditions has spread across the country, writing that it means "more Guyanese and South Indian and Palestinian and Indigenous Mexican food for all of us." They also praise restaurants that are putting their staff first by offering improved working environments.

"I hope this list, divided by region and filled with our thoughts on what to order and what to know, acts as an invitation to shake off any skepticism as to whether going out is 'worth it' these days," writes restaurant editor Elazar Sontag.

Each restaurant on the list receives a brief profile along with a list of recommended dishes. For El Rincon del Maiz, a taqueria opened in a former Sonic Drive-In in 2021, they write:

Here, the Saporito family, hailing from Tabasco, Mexico, presses out a rainbow of seven different types of corn tortillas doctored up with homemade flavoring mixes—magenta beetroot, fiery orange guajillo, green nopal. Then, they fill them with clever blends of plant-based ingredients: juicy jackfruit quesabirria, crispy fried hibiscus with cauliflower, even chicharrones made of shredded coconut. Oh, and did we mention the creamy mushroom tamal bathed in salsa verde? There are plenty of excellent meat options too (and a very good horchata) but here, plants really deserve the spotlight.

Their recommendations for what to order include the Vegan Birria Taco, Hibiscus & Cauliflower Taco, and Mushroom Tamale.

From this list of 50 restaurants, Bon Appetit will reveal its ranked top 10 list on September 14.

Photo courtesy of UT Southwestern

2 Dallas hospitals earn healthy rankings in prestigious list of best in U.S. and Texas

off the charts

A prestigious, annual national report has verified what Texans already know: The state boasts some of the best adult and children’s hospitals in the country. U.S. News & World Report has released its 2022-23 Best Hospitals list, and two Dallas hospitals earned especially healthy rankings.

UT Southwestern Medical Center was rated the No. 2 hospital in Texas. The Dallas institution also scored especially well nationally in urology (No. 11), cardiology and heart surgery (No. 14), diabetes and endocrinology (No. 18), pulmonology and lung surgery, (No. 21), and cancer (No. 25).

Not far down the list is Baylor University Medical Center in Dallas, which ranked No. 4 in Texas. One Baylor department ranked nationally: gastroenterology and GI surgery department, No. 34.

Rankings for the annual U.S. News study are based on scores in patient care, patient safety, outcomes, nursing, advanced technology, and reputation.

Elsewhere in Texas
Not surprisingly, The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center in Houston was rated No. 1 in the nation for cancer care. (MD Anderson has been considered in the top two cancer hospitals in the U.S. since U.S. News launched the survey in 1990.) MD Anderson also scored high national ranks for specialty treatments: urology (No. 5) and diabetes and endocrinology (No. 13). The center continues to maintain its “High Performing” rating on the U.S. News list for colon cancer and lung cancer. It also received “High Performing” ratings for the three newly added adult procedures and conditions: ovarian cancer, prostate cancer, and uterine cancer, per a press release.

Houston Methodist Hospital comes in at No. 15 nationally and No. 1 in Texas for the 11th year in a row. Houston Methodist Hospital ranks in 10 specialties, the most of any hospital in the state, according to the report. Two of these ranked specialties appear in the list’s top 10 (diabetes and endocrinology at No. 9; gastroenterology/GI surgery at No. 8), while six are ranked in the top 20.

Texas Children’s Hospital in Houston ranks No. 2 overall in the Best Children’s Hospitals ranking. The children’s center also remains top in Texas and the Southwest, and at No. 1 in heart treatment for the sixth year in a row.

Also boasting top honors in the state — and No. 10 nationally — is Houston's Menninger Clinic. The acclaimed facility tied for tenth place on U.S. News’ list of best psychiatric hospitals, making it the all-out best in Texas.

Meanwhile, Austin’s St. David’s Medical Center ranked No. 8 in Texas. That the hospital’s rehabilitation department ranked nationally, coming in at No. 37 overall.

The complete list of Texas' top 10 hospitals can be found here.

Jeni's

Dallas earns tragic ranking in list of best and worst ice cream cities

Ice Cream News

Dallas has never had a tradition of great ice cream, and a national survey proves that to be true. Gird thyself: According to a list of of the best (and worst) ice cream cities in America, Dallas is the ninth-worst city in the U.S.

The survey, compiled by real estate brokerage Home Bay, ranks 50 cities using factors such as the number of ice cream shops per capita, the price of a small cup or cone (using Ben & Jerry's as a benchmark), average annual temperature, and Google searches. Data sources include the U.S. Census Bureau, Yelp, and Google Trends.

The best
The best cities for ice cream have more shops (an average of 4.9 ice cream shops per 100,000 people), a high interest in ice cream (Google searches), and better prices, with a small cup of Ben & Jerry's averaging $4.47 versus the $4.50 residents pay in the average city.

Here's a surprise: Oklahoma City is America's best ice cream city, thanks to a high number of ice cream shops per capita as well as affordability.

The top 10 cities in the U.S. for ice cream are as follows:

  1. Oklahoma City
  2. New Orleans
  3. Las Vegas
  4. San Jose
  5. Providence
  6. Raleigh NC
  7. Salt Lake City
  8. Austin
  9. Boston
  10. Philadelphia

Way to go, Austin! At least one Texas city makes the list. This is what they say about Austin's ice cream scene:

Austin excels when it comes to appreciation of different ice cream styles. The city ranks third in our ice cream variety metric thanks to frequent searches for ice cream types and flavors. The slogan "Keep Austin Weird" is appropriate with so many locals going bananas: The city ranks first in online search interest for banana ice cream. Visitors can find two different types of banana ice cream — banana cream pie and strawberry banana — at local chain Amy's Ice Creams. Additionally, Austin has the seventh-warmest average temperature in our study, making ice cream especially appreciated as a sweet treat for relief from the heat.

And as a subset of this ice cream survey, San Antonio wins the No. 1 slot for Best Shaved Ice.

The worst
The bottom 10 cities, including Dallas, have fewer ice cream shops, higher costs, and less ice cream interest in the topic, which they judge by the number of Google searches for topics such as "ice cream near me" and "ice cream flavors."

The 10 worst ice cream cities are as follows:

  1. Memphis
  2. Riverside, California
  3. Washington DC
  4. Miami
  5. Houston
  6. Baltimore
  7. Los Angeles
  8. Sacramento
  9. Dallas
  10. Jacksonville

These cities have only 2.2 ice cream shops per 100,000 people. The average city has 3.4 shops per 100,000 people. And Dallas has only 1.4 ice cream shops per 100,000 people.

But wait! That number is due to rise, with the recent arrival of chains such as Jeni's Splendid Ice Creams and Van Leeuwen, joining stalwart locals such as Botolino Gelato Artigianale on Greenville Avenue and Amorino Gelato which now has three locations in Plano, Dallas' Preston Center, and Fort Worth.

Ice cream in these worst cities is also more expensive. A small cup of ice cream averages $4.80 in the bottom 10 cities, versus $4.50 for the average city in the study.

Ice cream in Missouri and Alabama is the cheapest: $3.99 for a small Ben & Jerry's cone. Washington DC is the most expensive, at $5.35 for a cone.

Photo by WJNPHOTO

Where to eat in Dallas right now: 8 most intriguing restaurants for June

Where to Eat

For the June edition of Where to Eat, CultureMap's monthly feature on best restaurants to try, we've assembled an intriguing assortment that includes newcomers, brand-newcomers, and one much anticipated returning favorite.

Here's where to eat in Dallas right now:

Au Troisieme
New restaurant in Preston Center is from Bobby Pollette, a caterer and private chef who has cooked everywhere from Hawaii to Aspen to Palm Beach. The menu uses classical French techniques, but with influences from all over, with a worldly sense of style. Dishes include halibut wrapped in mustard greens, then grilled, served on a corn sauce with baby turnips, and an innovative risotto starring cauliflower and smoked tomato. They're starting out gently, just lunch for now, featuring clever sandwiches such as a Reuben with kim chi, and a "Hawaiian Cuban," containing smoked pork, ham cured in-house, and house-made pickles, with dinner coming in the next few weeks.

The Beehive
Downtown Dallas gets a sweet new spot in the cute Mid-Elm Lofts building, also home to its sibling restaurant Sky Blossom, both owned by veteran restaurateur Salina Le. The menu is New American, but with lots of international touches. Tempting starters include fritto misto, tofu lettuce bowls, grilled pork bites, steak bites with Korean BBQ sauce, lobster bites in tempura batter with yuzu sauce, tuna bowls, and chicken karaage. Entrees include garlic pasta, rack of lamb, scallops, salmon buerre Meuniere, and filet mignon, and there's a serious commitment to dessert including banana tart, lava cake, creme brulee, and a dessert flight with chocolate mousse, matcha cheesecake, and pavlova.

Cafe HwaSan
New brunch spot in Plano strives to provide an authentic Korean cafe experience. They source their coffee beans from Onyx Coffee Labs and ceremonial-grade matcha imported from Japan. The menu features brunch and Korean-inspired dishes. including tacos, a bulgogi rice bowl, K-Town fried chicken tenders, udon noodles, pork dumplings, avocado toast, and eight burgers including one topped with kimchi. A favorite dish so far is the fab fusion fest chicken croffle and kimchi fries.

Darna Mediterranean Market
Worldly market and eatery just opened in the former Barnes & Noble space at Legacy West in Plano. Darna is from veteran restaurateur Yaser Khalaf (Mondo Pizza, Baboush in Dallas, Shawarma Bar in Fort Worth), and represents his celebration of the shops, cafés, street vendors and bazaars found in the Mediterranean. You can dine in, on dishes such as Greek feta fondue, pastrami hummus, and chicken kabobs; or else grab and go from a deli featuring ready-to-eat offerings as well as salad and sandwich stations where you can build your own, A coffee bar boasts pastries, desserts, and Turkish coffee, and a full-service alcohol bar offers craft cocktails, beer, and wine.

Douglas Bar and Grill
New BBQ restaurant in Snider Plaza is from Doug Pickering, former chef at Ferris Wheelers Backyard, along with partners Michael Sharp and Zach Warner, marrying traditional BBQ staples with Southern cooking and the occasional twist such as a brisket grilled cheese sandwich. It's a pretty simple menu. There are smoked meats, meat combo plates, meat sandwiches such as the Meat Sweats with brisket and turkey, and side dishes with meat such as beans with brisket and slaw with bacon. There's also a full bar with cocktails, beer, and even wine by the glass. No meat in the wine, sorry.

Ford's Garage
Florida-based concept is a burger-and-craft-beer concept inspired by Henry Ford himself, which just opened its first Texas location in Plano, at 3904 Dallas Pkwy. Ford's is a licensee of the Ford Motor Company, enabling them to use the company's iconic blue oval logo and other brand imagery. The Plano location is sculpted to look like a 1920s service station and is filled to the brim with Ford memorabilia, including vintage vehicles, fixtures, and gas pumps, as well as a Model T or Model A car suspended above the center bar. The menu is all-American with meatloaf, wings, onion rings, mac & cheese, and salads; burgers include a vegetarian option, served on buns branded with the Ford logo. A full bar includes craft beer with over 20 local and domestic options.

Hugo's Invitados
Dallas' West Village gets its Mexican back with the early June opening of Hugo's Invitados, taking over the space at 3699 McKinney Ave. formerly occupied by Mi Cocina. This is the second location; the first debuted in Las Colinas in 2018. The menu mirrors the Las Colinas location with dishes such as Mexican avocado toast, the "toast" being a corn masa patty topped with salsa roja botanera, avocado, and queso fresco, although they discontinued the hummus trio which was a great veg dish. Seek solace in innovative cocktails such as their cucumber serrano margarita.

Kalachandji's
Praise Krishna, Dallas' longest running vegetarian restaurant located at a temple in East Dallas has reopened its beloved self-serve buffet, following a grueling closure due to the pandemic. Founded in 1982, Kalachandji's serves vegetarian dishes from India, with a menu they quite diligently post daily, featuring items such as bok choy stir-fry, pakora with tamarind chutney, kidney bean curry, and kofta balls in tomato gravy. They're also skilled bakers with bread made in-house and always a nice dessert like rice pudding or vegan brownies. Service is sweet, and so is the famous courtyard patio in the center of the restaurant.

Courtesy photo

Dallas makes a respectable showing on list of top 20 vegan cities in U.S.

Vegan News

A new survey of the top 20 cities in the U.S. where it's best to be a vegan has determined which city is the most vegan of all. Spoiler: It's not Dallas. Boo.

But Dallas did make the list, coming in at No. 12, boasting 209 restaurants that are vegan or offer vegan options.

The survey by the team at Meal Delivery Experts set out to determine which cities have the most vegan food options. They compiled the 20 most populous cities in the U.S., then used data from TripAdvisor to count how many restaurants or food venues in each city offers at least one vegan option.

New York comes in at No. 1, blowing everyone else away with 1464 restaurants or food venues offering vegan options — more than double the number than any other city on the list.

No. 2: Los Angeles is in second place, with 705 restaurants or food venues offering vegan options. Los Angeles has among the widest variety of cuisines including vegan Korean, Ethiopian, and Thai food.

No. 3: Chicago, with 489 restaurants or food venues offering vegan options, which is a surprise since Chicago is such a big meat town, although the city is best known for deep-dish pizza, and many Chicago restaurants now offer a vegan alternative.

Whether motivated by health, environmental, or ethical reasons, the number of vegans in the US is rapidly increasing, reaching new heights in 2022. One in ten, or 10 percent, of Americans now consider themselves vegan or vegetarian.

The dollars are also there, with the plant-based industry worth over $7 billion in the US in 2022.

The milk substitute market is valued at over $3 billion in 2022.

The meat substitute market is valued over $1 billion in 2022.

Houston and Austin both make the top 10. Houston comes in at No. 6, with 312 restaurants — snatching the surprise win for top vegan city in Texas away from Austin, which has a bigger reputation for being veg-friendly; Austin is No. 8 on the list with 286 restaurants.

San Antonio is No. 13, with 202 vegan- or vegan-friendly establishments, just getting nosed out by Dallas.

Dallas' vegan scene is noteworthy for a few reasons. It's the de facto birthplace of the Mexican vegan trend, in which Mexican restaurants switch to an entirely vegan menu, a national trend that was pioneered by El Palote Panaderia in Dallas' Pleasant Grove neighborhood.

Dallas is also home to the first Belse, the gourmet vegan restaurant in downtown Dallas that's a spinoff of famed L.A. restaurant Little Pine. A second location of Belse just opened in New York on June 14. So we had it before New York, ha ha, sorry No. 1 city.

These are things that earned Dallas its very first spot on the 2019 list of Top 10 Vegan Cities in the U.S. compiled by PETA, which, no offense to Meal Delivery Experts, is a much more authoritative source on all matters of vegan and animals.

The real tragedy and misleading story is Fort Worth, which is in last place, with 68 restaurants or food venues offering at least one vegan option. Despite what the numbers may say, Fort Worth has the buzziest vegan scene in Texas right now with places like Pizza Verde, Zonk Burger, Mariachi's Dine-In, and is also home to Texas' most famous vegan restaurant, Spiral Diner.

But by sheer numbers, Fort Worth is beat even by Oklahoma City and San Jose, California, tied with 80 restaurants or food venues each. What a travesty.

The full list, by ranking:

  1. New York - 1464
  2. Los Angeles - 705
  3. Chicago - 489
  4. San Francisco - 467
  5. San Diego - 385
  6. Houston - 312
  7. Seattle - 309
  8. Austin - 286
  9. Denver - 261
  10. Philadelphia - 258
  11. Phoenix - 234
  12. Dallas - 209
  13. San Antonio - 202
  14. Charlotte, NC - 176
  15. Jacksonville, FL - 140
  16. Indianapolis - 140
  17. Columbus, Ohio - 137
  18. San Jose - 80
  19. Oklahoma City - 80
  20. Fort Worth - 68
Photo courtesy of Meridian

Dallas restaurant makes prestigious Best New Restaurants in America list

Top 10 News

A Dallas restaurant has earned a major nod from international magazine Robb Report: Meridian, the acclaimed restaurant from esteemed chef Junior Borges, has nabbed a spot on the publication's annual 10 Best New Restaurants in America, coming in at a laudable No. 5 on the list, along with buzzy Houston restaurant March and eight other top eateries from around the U.S.

Robb Report fancies itself an expert in the realm of luxury, and is known for its numerous lists on topics such as Most Anticipated Restaurants, Most Beautiful Restaurants, and most famously, its World's 50 Best Restaurants.

This Best New list, which was released on June 14, spotlights 10 establishments that are "curating indulgent menu's alongside fun, relaxed ambiences."

It's mystifying that they'd publish the article with a typo as blatant as the apostrophe in what should be a plural "menus." There also seems to be an error in the intro, which cites two restaurants not on the list — one of which is Monarch, the Italian steakhouse in downtown Dallas. Was Monarch a contender that got replaced at the last minute?

The theme of the list is not just best, but also restaurants that are fun:

... As Robb Report traveled across America this past winter and spring, visiting restaurants in the wake of the industry being battered by Covid-19 for two years, we sensed a new mood emerging. Offering exceptional cooking was no longer enough. If a restaurant’s business recipe didn’t include some joy and swagger amid an atmosphere of conviviality, it found itself noticeably emptier than those that did.

A populace starved for the once-routine act of going out wants to go big. Restaurants are more than willing to accommodate with theatrical tableside service and dishes that practically beg diners to break out their phones and broadcast the opulence of their outings on social media. After two years of pandemic cheerlessness, diners want a taste of the good life, and the best new restaurants in America are giving it to them.

The list is compiled by Jeremy Repanich, Robb Report's culinary editor, along with digital editor Justin Fenner and they have a pattern of including restaurants and chefs from Texas, which other coastal publications sometimes ignore.

Meridian is the exciting Brazilian restaurant that opened in Dallas' The Village in 2021. It's a big critical favorite, earning accolades such as CultureMap's 2022 award for Best Restaurant in Dallas, as well as two nominations in 2021 for Best New Restaurant and Best Chef. Meridian was also on the 2022 list of best new restaurants by Texas Monthly.

The Robb Report applauds Borges' ability to "take the familiar and have fun with it."

At chef Junior Borges' modern Brazilian restaurant, Meridian, he’s highlighting food from his childhood in Rio de Janeiro and then incorporating flavors from around Texas—and the world. So a plate of capicola and pickles comes with tapioca Brazilian cheese fritters that are chewy inside and perfectly crisp on the outside; quail is stuffed with foie gras and served with a jus made with the Brazilian guava paste goiabada; and there’s Texas Wagyu beef, but the steak on offer is the picanha, a cut that was first popularized in his native country.

At Meridian, Borges is taking the familiar and having fun with it. Restaurant menus are flooded with Little Gem Caesar salads, but he’s opted for a kohlrabi-based version. In Meridian’s rendition, ribbons of the German turnip offer a crisp and refreshing counterpoint to the anchovy-filled aioli they’re nestled in, while fresh mint leaves provide herbal punch to an already flavorful dish. It’s a testament to Borges that a salad could be this memorable.

The other Texas restaurant on the list is March, the highly rated Mediterranean fine-dining restaurant in Houston, which came in at an impressive No. 2. March has racked up its own set of awards including a nomination for Best Restaurant of 2022 in CultureMap's annual Tastemaker Awards.

No. 1 on the list is San Ho Won, a San Francisco restaurant featuring dishes from Korea from fine-dining chefs Corey Lee and Jeong-In Hwang.

Others on the list include Kasama, a Filipino restaurant in Chicago; Les Trois Chevaux, a Chinese restaurant employing French techniques in New York; Horses, a Los Angeles spot from a husband-and-wife chef team; Audrey, a Nashville eatery from famed chef Sean Brock; Tomo, an Asian tasting restaurant in Washington State; Mena, a New York restaurant with a global menu; and Callie, a Mediterranean spot in San Diego.

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CultureMap Emails are Awesome

Top-ranked high schools make the grade in this week's 5 hottest Dallas headlines

This week's hot headlines

Editor's note: A lot happened this week, so here's your chance to get caught up. Read on for the week's most popular headlines. Looking for the best things to do this weekend? Find that list here.

1. 2 distinguished Dallas high schools sit at head of the class as Texas' best in 2022. Two campuses in Dallas have earned extra credit as the best high schools in Texas. In the latest rankings from education review website Niche, Dallas ISD’s School for the Talented & Gifted tops the list of the state’s best public high schools, and St. Mark’s School of Texas in Dallas leads the list of the state’s best private high schools.

2. NFL legend Terry Bradshaw's ranch north of Dallas listed for $22.5 million. An Oklahoma ranch around 70 miles north of Dallas-Fort Worth that’s owned by NFL Hall of Famer and Fox Sports analyst Terry Bradshaw is back on the market for $22.5 million. The 744-acre ranch was relisted after a deal with a would-be buyer fell through.

3. Dallas grilled cheese restaurant abruptly closes location in Oak Cliff. A Bishop Arts restaurant dedicated to making grilled cheese sandwiches has closed: The aptly named Dallas Grilled Cheese Co. closed its original location at 310 W. 7th St., after nearly eight years. According to co-owner Diana Ezzell, the closure was prompted by problems with the location.

4. Best vegan grocer in Denton relocates to market-deli space. An acclaimed market in Denton specializing in all things vegan is making a move: Mashup Market, the plant-based specialty grocer that debuted at 316 Oak St. in 2020, is closing that original location and making its new headquarters at 1302 W. Hickory St., its second location that opened in 2021.

5. Dallas man allegedly scammed $26M from Chinese real estate investors. A Dallas-area man has been charged for allegedly scamming Chinese investors out of more than $26 million in a real estate scheme. Timothy Lynch Barton, the 59-year-old president of real estate development firm JMJ and CEO of real estate investment firm Carnegie Development, has been indicted on seven counts of wire fraud, one count of conspiracy to commit wire fraud, and one count of securities fraud.

Beto to visit Dallas college campuses following debate on TV with Abbott

Campaign News

On November 8, Texas will vote for its next governor — choosing from either incumbent Republican Greg Abbott or Democratic challenger Beto O’Rourke.

In anticipation, the two will participate in a debate on September 30, which takes place at 7 pm at the University of Texas Rio Grande Valley in Edinburg. It's hosted by KXAN news anchor Britt Moreno and will feature questions from a panel of journalists.

The debate will air on Nexstar television stations which in Dallas is KDAF Channel 33; the Texas Tribune will also livestream.

It's their only scheduled debate and according to the Associated Press, Abbott conditioned his participation on the debate taking place without an audience.

"Sources tell me Abbott would only agree to face Beto with no audience in the room," said journalist Scott Braddock, in a tweet which is right here:

This will be first time Abbott and O'Rourke meet since the May 25 press conference where O’Rourke confronted Abbott after the shooting in Uvalde.

O'Rourke, who previously undertook a summer tour across Texas, holding 70 public events in more than 65 counties, is now launching a College Tour focused on young voters. It includes visits to two Dallas-area campuses, with only one open to the public, as follows:

  • Monday October 3, 10 am: Town Hall at University of North Texas, at the University of North Texas - Gateway Center Ballroom, 801 N. Texas Blvd., Denton. Open to UNT students only.
  • Monday October 3, 12:30 pm: College Tour Town Hall at Dallas College El Centro Campus, 801 Main St., Dallas. Open to the public.

During the College Tour, he'll hold more than a dozen public events at colleges and universities around the state, affording an opportunity not only for him to share his platform — reproductive freedom, reducing gun violence, raising minimum wage, legalizing marijuana — but also an opportunity to get students and young people registered before the October 11 deadline.

'Wide-awake' Dallas neighbor is 2nd best U.S city for families, says Fortune

No place like home

Fortune advises readers to not let Wylie’s “picturesque, historic downtown fool you.” And for good reason. The magazine hails the North Texas city as “a fast-growing, modern community that doesn’t skimp on the amenities.”

Thanks in large part to those amenities, Fortune puts Wylie at No. 2 on its list of the 25 best places in the U.S. for families to live. Ann Arbor, Michigan, takes the top spot.

In recognizing Wylie, the magazine cites the city’s well-above-average public schools, numerous facilities for older residents, and events such as the Bluegrass on Ballard festival and Wylie 500 Pedal Car Race.

"With its start as a stop on the Santa Fe Railway in the 1880s, Wylie has always been a gathering place," the magazine writes. "In fact, because shops stayed open late to accommodate the railway visitors and business, one of the town’s nicknames became 'Wide-Awake Wylie.' The historic downtown continues that tradition of community today..."

Fortune lists the median home price in Wylie as $399,838 and the median household income as $96,845. The booming suburb is home to nearly 60,000 residents. It now stretches across Dallas, Collin, and Rockwall counties.

To come up with its ranking, Fortune combed through mounds of data for almost 2,000 communities in the U.S.

The only other Texas city in the top 25 is the Houston suburb of Sugar Land, ranked 17th.

“Residents have a sweet spot for this Houston suburb that brings the community together through its lively downtown hub, local events, and even a ball game or two,” Fortune says.

Among other highlights, Fortune notes Sugar Land’s “outstanding schools,” the Sugar Land Space Cowboys minor-league baseball team, Sugar Land Town Square, and high-quality health care at Memorial Hermann Sugar Land Hospital.

In Sugar Land, the median home price is $399,250 and the median household income is $121,665, according to Fortune. The suburb is home to around 110,000 people.