Trinity Groves is delightful. New restaurants are opening there all the time, and northern Dallasites are coming across the bridge to check it out and spend their money on our side of the river. But those of us who live in Oak Cliff can get to know the ‘hood a little better than just learning the valet’s name. Make a left onto Singleton and give one of these mom-and-pop neighborhood places a shot.
This hamburger stand has been on Singleton since at least the 1950s. It had been closed for years when neighborhood resident Lupe Gutierrez bought it with her mother, who does the cooking. Order a cheeseburger and perfect, crispy tater tots for about $5. It’s a simple thin-patty burger served on a grilled bun, and it’s so good. This place doesn’t have indoor seating, and it’s cash only.
The carnitas torta here costs $4.50, and it’s one of the best sandwiches that exists. Lots of crispy meat, avocado, mayo, lettuce, tomato and onion. Nothing crazy, and totally addictive. This place also serves knock-outs, snow cones with soft-serve ice cream in the middle. The Dog House has the same owners as Wimpy’s, and it also doesn’t have indoor seating and accepts cash only.
This restaurant opened about a year ago across the street from Jerry’s supermarket. The menu is simple: fried catfish, burgers and fried shrimp. The owner worked for 17 years in the hotel business before pursuing his dream of opening a restaurant. We ordered a two-piece filet basket ($8.95), which actually comes with three pieces of fish, fries with seasoned salt, white bread and pickles ala Rudy’s. The fish also is served with orange “tarta” sauce, which tastes like tartar sauce mixed with seasoned salt. Whiskers has a daily $5 lunch special, usually a burger or fish sandwich.
This old-school barbecue joint has a high counter, paneled walls and decades of wood smoke soaked into everything. It was one of the original Hardeman’s BBQ locations that opened in the 1950s. The Hardemans sold this store to their cousins the Odoms in 1990. We ordered an enormous baked potato loaded with butter, cheese and sour cream, plus a ton of chopped beef. We may never be hungry again.