By Sara Newberry
Dallas Beer Kitchen has definitely been through some ups and downs in its five-year history. After opening in 2013, they thrived until construction affected business so deeply that the former owner had to close the doors. Amazingly, two investors swooped in, and the place reopened after only five days. There was talk of revamping the menu at that point to feature handmade sausages among other beer-friendly choices, but that menu seems not to have materialized. Instead, the menu is slightly generic “bar” food, with burgers, a few salads and some chicken options.
Let’s start with the burgers. “Anti-lean” beef is the key ingredient to the burgers; it’s purported to be 32 percent fat. Now, that burger would be so rich to be almost guilt-inducing. What we got was not that. A chorizo burger (ordered medium) was so overcooked it was almost bitter. I guess there was chorizo on it, but I couldn’t taste it. A black and bleu burger fared a little better; at the very least it was still slightly pink when it got to the table. I didn’t taste any Cajun seasoning, but the bleu cheese was tangy and creamy. A triple-decker chicken club was surprisingly good. After the burger experience I expected it to be dried out and chewy, but it wasn’t. The bacon and avocado were both generous. And I guess there was paprika aioli? It was very subtle. But overall, it was successful.
A Caesar salad was also nice, if a little generic. I enjoyed it, but there was nothing about it that made it stand out from any other I’ve had. Mac & beer cheese is creamy and was excellent with a generous addition of salt.
Chicken Chicharrones were well seasoned, but spent about 90 seconds too long in the fryer. The dill sauce served with them was maybe the best thing I had on any of my visits. French fries were also great. Onion rings were obviously the frozen ones from a bag. The Sriracha sauce with them was fine.
I love beer, and I love eating, so I figured I’d be the perfect customer for Dallas Beer Kitchen. Looking at old menus, I see so much promise. Where did all of those dishes go? Where did the actual dishes go? Most of our food arrived in plastic baskets. But they’ve nailed the “beer” part. The “kitchen” part of the name seems to have been kind of forgotten. There is currently only one menu item — mac & beer cheese — that actually incorporates beer. Why aren’t there beer-braised options? What about sausages? Why are the onion rings breaded and not beer-battered? Why isn’t there a stout cake for dessert (or anything for dessert, for that matter)? It’s frustrating, as a cook and beer fan, to see a giant missed opportunity like this one.
Dallas Beer Kitchen
1802 Greenville Avenue
Monday – Friday
5 p.m. – midnight
Saturday – Sunday
3 p.m. – midnight