100 Favorite Dishes, No. 24: The Reuben at Cock and Bull

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House-cured corned beef for the Reuben win.
To prepare for this fall's Best of Dallas® 2014 issue, we're counting down (in no particular order) our 100 Favorite Dishes. If there's a dish you think we need to try, leave it in the comments, or email me.

Remember the Reuben sandwich way back at No. 61? I touted the fact that I finally found a version of this deli classic that wasn't a kick in the gut. If you're the type that wants your corned beef on rye to be as guilt free as possible (anyone?), head back to my post about Kuby's. If you believe in decadence, statin drugs and faithfully going to the gym tomorrow, read on.

But do so at your own risk.

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100 Favorite Dishes, No. 25: Meatloaf at Stock and Barrel

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Catherine Downes
This dish is making waves in Bishop Arts
To prepare for this fall's Best of Dallas® 2014 issue, we're counting down (in no particular order) our 100 Favorite Dishes. If there's a dish you think we need to try, leave it in the comments, or email me.

I was sitting at the bar of Oak Cliff's Stock and Barrel a while back and a diner a few stools down showered praise on the plate between mouth-filled bites. When I reviewed the restaurant, I liked the dish enough to make it a focal point of the story. And just this weekend I was sitting on a porch in the Bishop Arts District and overheard two guys talking restaurants in their hood.

"Have you been to Stock and Barrel yet?" asked dude No. 1 of dude No. 2. "Nah, man, but I keep hearing about it."

"You have got to try the meatloaf, man," continued No. 1. And he's right: Everyone with even the most casual affection for beef should try it. Soon

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100 Favorite Dishes, No. 26: Bacon-Encrusted Bone Marrow at Knife

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Bacon-flavored-bread-crumb-encrusted-bone-marrow on a bed of salt
To prepare for this fall's Best of Dallas® 2014 issue, we're counting down (in no particular order) our 100 Favorite Dishes. If there's a dish you think we need to try, leave it in the comments, or email me.

This might be the most absurd, gratuitous, over-the-top dish on this list of 100 Favorite Dishes. Bone marrow is one of the most rich and decadent ingredients to be harvested from an animal, and when roasted it yields the most amazing spread for bread.

Most restaurants serve it simply, with a little parsley salad and a knife for spreading. At Knife, though, where John Tesar has embraced ingredients like bacon more than any Dallas chef before him, a simple salad is pointless. In fact, he goes so far as to minimize it.

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100 Favorite Dishes, No. 27: The Pastrami Sandwich at the Whistling Pig

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Pardon my flash, it's dark inside the Pig.
To prepare for this fall's Best of Dallas® 2014 issue, we're counting down (in no particular order) our 100 Favorite Dishes. If there's a dish you think we need to try, leave it in the comments, or email me.

Based on the output from the kitchen of Cock and Bull, it was expected. The East Dallas mainstay has been turning out one of the city's best Reuben sandwiches for years, with beef that was cured, carefully cooked and sliced on site. House-cured deli cuts are a rarity in Dallas. If you find them, place your order quickly before the kitchen changes its mind.

So when a second bar called the Whistling Pig was opened by the same owner and chef, and he announced that they'd installed a smoker, pastrami was the next logical extension. (As was a terrible sandwich photo; both bars are notoriously dark.) And because of the way chef Asher Stevens always seems to work with meat, bread and cheese, it was safe to assume this sandwich was going to be a notable one.

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100 Favorite Dishes, No. 28: The Fried Bologna Sandwich at Maple and Motor

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Somehow better than a burger.
To prepare for this fall's Best of Dallas® 2014 issue, we're counting down (in no particular order) our 100 Favorite Dishes. If there's a dish you think we need to try, leave it in the comments, or email me.

I remember the exact moment I came to the realization that that the bologna sandwich served at Maple and Motor was better than the burgers that everyone raves about. It was two summers ago. I ordered it as a change-up. My conversion happened in a single bite.

I realize my assertion may upset many fans of Jack Perkins' famous burgers, but I stand by it, firmly. This sandwich is that good.

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100 Favorite Dishes, No. 29: Short Rib Grilled Cheese at East Hampton

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Lori Bandi
You're going to need a personal day.
To prepare for this fall's Best of Dallas® 2014 issue, we're counting down (in no particular order) our 100 Favorite Dishes. If there's a dish you think we need to try, leave it in the comments, or email me.

You could argue that the grilled cheese sandwich was fine enough as originally intended: Melted cheese, buttered bread: What else do you need?

The argument starts to quiver, however, in the presence of the the beastly sandwich pictured above. The hot cheese and short rib served at East Hampton Sandwich Company is one of the messiest sandwiches you will ever have the pleasure of trying to handle. And it's worth the mess.

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100 Favorite Dishes, No. 30: The Charcuterie Plate at FT33

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Catherine Downes
The charcuterie plate at FT33
To prepare for this fall's Best of Dallas® 2014 issue, we're counting down (in no particular order) our 100 Favorite Dishes. If there's a dish you think we need to try, leave it in the comments, or email me.

Plenty of restaurants offer a collection of seasoned, cured and preserved meats, known collectively as charcuterie. Some of them even make it themselves -- but not too many, because the process is complicated, intricate and takes a lot of time, equipment and space. The art of charcuterie requires meat grinders, casings and obscure ingredients like pink salt.

You also need special refrigerator space held at a constant temperature and humidity or hundreds if not thousands of dollars of meat could end up a rancid moldy mess. In short: charcuterie is a pain in the ass, which is why most restaurants that want to serve the stuff opt to buy their selection from someone else.

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100 Favorite Dishes, No. 31: Loukoumathes at Greek Fest

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Greek Fest is coming!
To prepare for this fall's Best of Dallas® 2014 issue, we're counting down (in no particular order) our 100 Favorite Dishes. If there's a dish you think we need to try, leave it in the comments, or email me.

In just about a month, the Holy Trinity Greek Orthodox Church in North Dallas will become the epicenter for the biggest Greek party of the year. For three days, thousands of people will come to eat gyros, drink lots of Fix beer and get in touch with their inner Grecians.

I've visited the festival for the last few years, and it's one of the better cultural events in Dallas. And every year I go, I finish my stay with an order sticky Loukoumathes, fresh from the oil. They're often so hot they let out a burst of steam when you bite them, filling your nose with their wonderful aroma.

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100 Favorite Dishes, No. 32: Pelmeni at the Russian Banya

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Catherine Downes
Pillows from heaven
To prepare for this fall's Best of Dallas® 2014 issue, we're counting down (in no particular order) our 100 Favorite Dishes. If there's a dish you think we need to try, leave it in the comments, or email me.

It's the least you can do for yourself after you've endured the Russian Banya's hotter-than-Hades oak-fueled sauna. Just minutes inside can test you sanity and your fortitude. A quick splash in the plunge pool kept at eight degrees centigrade will revive you, though. Some say these things are good for you.

This is the price you must pay for the Banya's delicious pelmeni: small dumplings floating in buttery broth and dusted with dill and served with a side of sour cream. Tighten your robe and lean over the shallow bowl they're served in. Breath in deeply. You'd go hours in the hell-box for food moments like this.

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100 Favorite Dishes, No. 33: Bread Pudding at Sissy's

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It's got a bit of a jiggle.
To prepare for this fall's Best of Dallas® 2014 issue, we're counting down (in no particular order) our 100 Favorite Dishes. If there's a dish you think we need to try, leave it in the comments, or email me.

It is the bread pudding to trump all bread puddings, and a pudding that's worth a trip on its own. I wrote about Sissy's bread pudding earlier this year to kick off our Happy Endings column, and I've yet to find one that comes even close.

Just as the brownie must balance between cake-y and fudge-y textures, bread pudding must balance between bread-y and custard-y textures. Too moist and it's like eating milk-soaked toast that's been under the heat lamp; too dry and it eats like a stale loaf of Wonder bread.

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