The Cheap Bastard's Guide to Great but Terrible Pre-Workout Meals in Dallas

Pound three of these, plus two coffees and hit the trail, y'all!! Let's do some hill-repeats and try not to throw up sprinkles!!
Dallas: The land of real barbecue and fuck-yeah tacos. A place where figuring out where you want to go to lunch takes at least 10 minutes every day because you and your coworker get into a face-punch fight over which burger is the best burger in Dallas.

But, when you're at the gym doing Yogalates and leg-warmer-ed elliptical battles later, there are certain lunches you will most definitely (and instantly) regret.

Behold: The 5 Worst Delicious Meals to Eat Pre-Workout in Dallas: A Cheap Bastard Special Investigation. To be crystal clear, list-makers are first and foremost OMG-delicious, and then they create the most interesting consequences at the gym a few hours later.

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A Field Guide to the Taquerias of I-35

Categories: Lists, Tacos

Taqueria 1
Matt Wood
Get ready to taste a lot of access roads.

Part of the responsibility that comes with being a Texan is that you're expected to know where the good tacos are at all times. This is easy and hard in equal measure, since there are approximately 500,000 taquerias in the state and little to no way of knowing which ones are worth your time outside of some gringo's Yelp review that ham-fistedly describes an establishment as "kinda ghetto but surprisingly delicious."

So, as you embark upon the wretched, hungover trip to Austin for a festival, packed in your ramshackle '95 Geo Metro with your three best friends who you hate, stave off the instant regret of an ill-advised Taco Bell binge by hitting up one of these street-style taco merchants instead.

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The Best Soccer Pubs in North Texas, and the Best Regional Craft Beers to Drink There

Categories: Beer, Lists

Staggering Irishman
Fans of the US Men's National Soccer Team gather often at Staggering Irishman
When watching soccer, it's typically a fine idea to have a pint or two in hand, and it's best to do it at one of DFW's many European-style pubs.

For the most part, these pubs are open early on Saturday and Sunday mornings, sometimes as early as 7, to accommodate Trans-Atlantic soccer-lovers longing for a pint.

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A Guide to Killing Valentine's Day in Dallas, No Matter Your Relationship Status

Categories: Lists

Courtesy Reunion Tower
With a view like this, how could you go wrong?
Time is running out to make your Valentine's Day reservations, and with so many options it's a daunting decision. There's a lot riding on this, but you can't just pick any random place -- you have to find the right fit for your situation.

Which type of Valentine are you? Whether you're a love bird ready to tie the knot, burned and bitter, or some shade in between, you'll find a solution here. And get a move on--you don't want to end up sad and alone.

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The 10 Most Powerful People in Dallas Dining

Categories: Lists

Scott Reitz
Phil Romano, talking up Trinity Groves
When you think about the word "power," a lot of things come to mind. Some of us imagine a tough, take-no-shit type of personality, and others recognize the influence and, well, power of a quieter, gentler rule. In Dallas' dining scene, we have a blend of those personalities when it comes to the people who make the decisions about the city's new restaurants.

Outside of the chefs, of which there are a few on this list, it is largely the investors, owners, and behind-the-scenes types who drive the dining scene forward. These players wield influence in their own ways, but they have all made their mark on a restaurant scene that is seeing more growth and innovation than ever.

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Dallas' Best Liquor Stores, Ranked

Categories: Drinking, Lists

Lauren Drewes Daniels
Spec's: It's what's for dinner.
Liquor stores are the grown-up equivalent of toy stores. These are the places that lushes are more excited to go to than anywhere else, and will happily plunk down a huge chunk of money on barrel-aged, triple-distilled ways to make our heads hurt really, really bad the next morning.

We've rounded up the city's ten best, and ranked them according to just how easily they can facilitate your drunkenness.

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10 New Year's Resolutions For Dallas Diners in 2015

Categories: Lists

file photo
Definitely eat more barbecue, just go to Plano to do it.

2014 was good to us, Dallas diners. We saw the opening of some of the city's most exciting restaurants along with some pretty devastating closings, but overall, things seem to be trending up for the foreseeable future. As such, that means that there is going to be a lot of excellent food to eat in the coming year, and you should make a conscious decision to break out of your dining rut and try some new things.

And this is, of course, the time of year when we make New Year's resolutions immediately before breaking them a few days into January. This year, though, you should resolve to just eat better in Dallas. Losing weight and quitting smoking is so ten years ago, so try one of these ten resolutions for Dallas diners instead.

1. Give the suburbs a chance.

For the longest time, the Dallas suburbs were a wasteland of chain restaurants and mediocre food, with a few notable exceptions. Now, this is entirely untrue. The migration of great Dallas restaurants, like Smoke, Dalat, EatZi's, and Lockhart Smokehouse, now means that there are plenty of great meals to be had north of I-635. You've always known about the excellent Asian and Indian food in Irving and Coppell, but now you have a few fine dining options for when you're meeting friends up north.

2. Eat some of John Tesar's old meat.

Chef John Tesar's 240-day dry aged ribeye was one of the most interesting menu items in Dallas this year, but it was relatively scarce. The process takes two-thirds of a year, which has meant that the beef has been really hard to come by. Now that Knife is finally hitting its stride after being open for most of 2014, you can look forward to much more of Chef Tesar's funky, flavorful beef in the New Year.

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Eight Local-Food Gift Ideas for the Hungry and Thirsty Dallasites in Your Life

Categories: Lists

Amy McCarthy
Artsy chocolate that is also delicious.
If you haven't already wrapped up your holiday shopping, you're probably very near entering panic mode. Who knows what you should buy your picky grandpa, but you're still going to have to suck it up and find a gift before December 25. You could fight the crowds at the malls for the umpteenth time, or you could just remember that everyone -- even your pickiest friends -- loves to eat.

And fortunately, there are lots of great local purveyors selling delicious food gifts this time of year. Instead of elbowing soccer moms at NorthPark or just throwing in the towel and ordering everything on Amazon, consider finishing up your shopping with these ten locally-made gifts. Remember: no one returns baked goods and booze.

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How to Dress Like Your Favorite Celebrity Dallas Chef for Halloween

Categories: Lists

Can Turkilymaz
All the costume you need, right here.
Halloween is the one day of the year when you pretend like you don't give a shit about what other people think of you, dress up like an idiot, and proceed to get really hammered while looking like a Ninja Turtle or something. Some people start planning for their Halloween costumes months in advance, but if you're like us, you're probably just going to put some new tape around your glasses and call yourself a nerd.

But you can be better than that. Your Halloween costume doesn't have to be some boring, generic bullshit, not with a city full of "celebrity" chefs to inspire you and your fellow partiers' outsize familiarity with those chefs' signature looks. Skip out of work early and gather your supplies for one of these five chef costumes, which are much more interesting than anything that you were thinking about wearing tonight. (Except you, Ebola Man. You stick to the plan. No, really, it's a great idea.)

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The Definitive Ranking of Cokes

Categories: Lists

Vivian Chen/Flickr
Your vessel of choice.
Not all Coca-Colas ("Cokes") are created equal. On one end of the spectrum is an especially frothy Coke that comes fizzing from a fountain into a much-too-big red plastic cup loaded to the brim with ice, in a dark pizza parlor in the sweaty aftermath of an especially tense slow-pitch softball game that you pretended not to care about but really, man, what a big win. On the other, or near it anyway, is a Caffeine-Free Coke, so pointless that its presence in the fridge has been known to cause unsuspecting soda-seekers to briefly consider drinking La Croix before slamming the fridge shut, huffing loudly and driving to 7-11 for a Big Gulp.

Here, the definitive ranking of Cokes. When bottles and cans are involved, they are presumed to be acceptably cold.

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