Restaurant Week in Perspective (Plus Nick & Sam’s)

So we’re in the final week of DFW Restaurant Week, left with those restaurants that have chosen to extend their prixe-fixe menu into week three – ironic that it’s the third week of an event that’s name indicates one and only one. I’ve heard this particular complaint, among others, and can understand the sentiments. However, I love Restaurant Week for what it is – an opportunity to take advantage of trying restaurants that I may not otherwise get around to as quickly, and to do so with a good cause at hand. After all, $7 per meal is donated directly to the North Texas Food Bank – enough money for 21 meals to feed hungry North Texans.

After only living in Dallas for less than three years, I’ve done a good job of getting to know restaurants and discovering the staples, new spots, fads and more. But I’ve certainly got some catching up to do and I don’t have gold bricks in the bank have a budget that doesn’t always allow champagne and steaks. So to me, Restaurant Week has been a perfect opportunity to sample some of the pricier staples over the last couple of years (and in a few cases promptly return after Restaurant Week).

N&S

We opted for one choice this year: Nick & Sam’s. My thoughts were that with filet on the menu, we couldn’t possibly go wrong – and I was thinking right. Although served up with service that was slightly lacking (hello, everyone was thinking what I thought and the place was busy, busy), the overall experience was a delicious treat.

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I chose the Watermelon Salad over the Soup of the Day and enjoyed it with one of Nick & Sam’s specialty cocktails – a fusion of gin and cucumber that was delightfully refreshing. For my main course I opted for the filet instead of the salmon and it was cooked to perfection. The family-style sides were mashed potatoes and creamed spinach that melted in your mouth (likely from butter and cheese but it was heavenly). My dessert was the Double Chocolate Brownie Smore but others around the table tried the Roasted Banana Panna Cotta or the Tequila Key Lime Tart – all of which were culinary creations that packed in sweet flavor. In all, it was a pleasant experience and peek into the renowned Dallas steakhouse.

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The North Texas Food Bank has been a charity of particular interest to me. My former job introduced me to the NTFB, which taught me about the hunger needs in North Texas and how they are whittling at the numbers. As a self-proclaimed “foodie” and individual who may constantly exclaim how I need some sort of particular food (driven by restaurant openings, cravings or pure boredom with whatever food kick I’ve been on), I’ve thankfully never truly understood hunger. It’s an epidemic that I hope we can end.

Whatever you think of Restaurant Week, know that it’s helping fight hunger for our neighbors. Not a big fan of the busy restaurants, or love your staple without the prixe-fixe but want to help NTFB? Check out their site for donation or volunteer opportunities.

As for Nick & Sam’s, I certainly hope to be back soon!

Leave a comment about your thoughts on Restaurant Week or your favorite choices.

Other restaurants I have enjoyed during Restaurant Week in the past include: Abacus, Al Biernat’s, Hibiscus and Stephan Pyles. (All were fantastic, and Abacus and Hibiscus have become some of my favorites in Dallas.)

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