Some of the noteworthy ones:I can remember some truly incredible dishes I’ve had over the years
Best Burger: the Guinness-marinated hamburgers & cheeseburgers at Slatery Rand’s in Irving, TX back in the late1990s. They also had great steak & mushroom pie and a spring greens with strawberry vinaigrette. They shuttered after a St. Patrick’s Day shindig when the owner skipped town after not paying rent for a couple months.
Best Steak Sandwich: Early 1990s, McClesky’s in Austin, Tx. They marinated their 3/4” thick rib-eyes in red wine, grilled them up with onions and put them on a nicely toasted bun with mayo and other toppings. The owner sold out to a well-heeled idiot who changed the recipe- they closed within a year of the sale.
Best Pho: a place in Irving, Tx in the late 1980s, across from Irving Mall and next to a Hooters. The owner spoke no English, but his pho was the most fragrant and flavorful I’ve ever had. His place closed in less than a year, probably because of the dining environment. His American nephew chose the decor and piped in music- mottled pink wallpaper and extended-play dance remixes. Not the best option for the Bible Belt in those days.
Best Creamy Mushroom Soup: 2005, in Moscow, Russia. I was having a meal in an upscale place in a Galleria-style mall just off of Red Square before going to St. Petersburg for a few days. I ordered the wild mushroom & garlic soup and…something else that didn’t matter. The soup was fragrant but nondescript…until I took a spoonful. The texture was more like a Kool-Whip, and it behaved like it. The spoonful of soup evaporated in my mouth, leaving behind only the mushroom & garlic flavors.