Foodies, dining enthusiasts, and restaurant aficionados of all stripes: DFW Restaurant Week will be upon us very soon!
From August 7 to August 13 of this year, more than 125 restaurants in the Dallas / Fort Worth area will be taking part in a special event to benefit two local charities. Here are the details, taken directly from Restaurant Week’s official website:
Dine Out and enjoy delicious three-course prix fixe dinners for $39 or $49, and two-course lunches for just $20. Discover more than 125 of the finest restaurants across Dallas / Fort Worth. Give Back with 20 percent of each meal donated to the North Texas Food Bank in the Dallas area and Lena Pope in Tarrant County, helping local children and families in need.
The 20th annual DFW Restaurant Week presented by Your Metroplex Cadillac Dealers begins Aug. 7-13, 2017, with many restaurants offering a Preview Weekend Aug. 4-6 or extending for extra weeks through Aug. 26! A list of participating restaurants, as well as some additional information about Restaurant Week, can be found online.
Meanwhile, here are some tips for making the most out of this occasion:
Restaurants that are offering substantial discounts (compared to their normal prices) will probably be jam-packed during peak hours, and some eateries have set a cap on the number of discounted meals that they’re going to offer during the week. So even if you don’t normally make reservations at your favorite restaurant, or a certain restaurant doesn’t normally take reservations, it would still be wise to give them a call beforehand and ask if space and/or food is still available. Doing so will significantly reduce your risk of showing up and being told that you’ll need to wait an hour for a table—or worse, that they’re booked solid for the rest of the evening!
Consider Going During “Off” Hours
Oftentimes, when people think about dining in a restaurant, their brains automatically default to eating dinner in a restaurant. But during Restaurant Week, many participating businesses will also be offering lunch deals in addition to dinner bargains. Eateries tend to be noticeably less busy during lunch hours than they are during dinnertime (especially on weekdays), so if you don’t want to have to fight the dinner rush at a certain establishment, it might be less stressful to just go there for lunch instead. And even if you don’t have time for a sit-down meal at 1 p.m. because you work during the day, you can still participate: simply call a nearby restaurant and ask if you can place an order to be picked up during your lunch break.
Be Prepared to Pay for Parking
That’s not to say that you’ll definitely have to pay to park; plenty of restaurants have their own lots, and some places in downtown Fort Worth and Dallas offer free street/parallel parking after 6 p.m. on weeknights. That said, there may be times when you will have to part with a few bucks in order to leave your car somewhere, whether it’s on the street, in a garage, or at a privately owned and maintained lot. In any case, make sure to comply with any and all restrictions on your parking spot; for example, some spots can only be used for one or two hours (and “meter feeding” is verboten), while others may be reserved for valet-parked vehicles. If you’re not sure about the parking situation near your selected restaurant, don’t be afraid to ask about it when you call to make your reservation. The host or hostess will be happy to point you in the right direction.
With over 125 businesses signed up to participate in the event, there’s something out there for everybody. Whether you’re craving Tex-Mex, Italian, surf-and-turf, sushi, or something else entirely, you are in NO danger of going hungry. And while you definitely could stick to places (or cuisines) with which you’re already familiar, Restaurant Week is also a great opportunity to branch out and try something new. Enjoy a discounted meal at a restaurant that’s normally out of your price range! Shut your eyes and pick a completely random eatery off of the roster! Throw caution to the wind and eat at a place that you know you normally wouldn’t choose for one reason or another! Remember: 20% of the cost of your meal will be donated to charity, so even if you decide that you probably won’t return to that particular new-to-you restaurant, you’ll still be contributing to a very worthy cause.
Small, independently owned businesses are the lifeblood of the DFW area; according to the Dallas Regional Chamber, an estimated 97% of companies in this region have fewer than 100 employees. And when a substantial number of these small businesses combine their efforts, they can make an enormous difference in our community. So if you’re a fan of eating out, please consider patronizing a participating restaurant during the second week of August. Diners get to enjoy discounted food, restaurateurs get to widen their customer base, and two great charities get to collect monetary donations.
Really, what’s not to love, here?