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Monday, March 22, 2010

Birthday @ Victor Tango's

Victor Tango's
3001 North Henderson Avenue
Dallas, TX 75206
(214) 252-8595

Price: $$

I went to a birthday dinner on Saturday at Victor Tango's. It's located on Henderson and 75 next to Hibiscus and Hector's on Henderson. I've been wanting to try this place so I was pretty excited. Hibiscus and Victor Tango's share the same valet, and it's complimentary! Yay! :)

There was a ton of people there when we walked in. It's a small place, with the bar on one side (close to the entrance) and the dining area on the other side. There were so many people at the bar we had to squeeze our way to the back of the restaurant, looking around for other people in our party. Soon most of the party arrived and we stood around waiting for our table. For a tiny restaurant, there sure was a lot of large groups...mostly celebrating birthdays as well. Our group had 11 people...and we were wondering where the heck were they gonna put us??

Even though we had a reservation for 7:30, we didn't get seated until an hour later. The host or manager guy was really nice though. Kept checking up on us and giving us updates for our table. He also informed us that he'll make sure we get some food as soon as we were seated. can always win me over with free food! haha.

So we finally got seated and they took our drink orders. The restaurant is just a mad house...more and more people kept coming in and very loud and lively...I wonder if they get large birthday groups all the time, or just coincidence that EVERYONE decided to go there that day.

The way Victor Tango's is, is that all the dishes are meant for sharing. Even though the menu divides it into different categories, the portions and prices were generally the same in every category. It's kind of like tapas style, but the portions were slightly bigger.

The free food didn't come as soon as I had hoped...I was pretty hungry by then. We had actually made our orders and were waiting for our dishes when they arrived...which created some confusion because we were like "we didn't order this!?!" They gave us 2 of each of the Ahi Tuna Nachos $13~
and JB's Tempura Green Beans with Wasabi Aioli $8~ The tuna nachos were pretty good. There was a good amount of tuna on the plate, but I thought the portion wasn't enough for the price. But for was great! hehe. The green beans were good as well. Nicely fried and still had good texture. I did not taste any wasabi in the aioli though. It was basically like mayonnaise.

We divided our party up in groups to make sharing easier. 4 of us were one group. We ordered the Wild Mushrooms, Asparagus, Fontina & Truffle Oil Flatbread $12~ This was really good, there was lots of mushrooms and asparagus on there. You can really smell the truffle oil. The presentation was nice as well on the wood platter. The flatbread was nice and crispy and didn't feel too heavy. I liked it a lot.

My choice was the Crispy Niman Ranch Pork Belly, Seasonal Greens, Soft Boiled Egg $12~ I love me some pork belly...and this dish did not disappoint! It was prepared in a way that I haven't had before. It was almost like thick cut bacon...full of flavor, crispy edges and fatty! YUM! The pork on its own was a tad salty but I ate it with the egg and it was an awesome combination. So simple, yet so good. The light taste of the egg with the salty meat, and the softness with the crispy! :) Then to make it even better, the greens were really fresh with a nice touch of vinaigrette on it. The entire plate went together very well, and I think all the elements are meant to be eaten together. This was one of my favorites of the night.

Another choice of mine was the Braised Short Rib, Rutabaga mash and Crispy Shallots $15~ You should know by weakness for braised short ribs. YUM-O! I usually have to order it if I see it on the menu. Also, ever since I saw Paula Deen make rutabaga mash on the Food Network, I've wanted to try it. haha. Never had rutabaga before. The short rib was pretty tender and had good flavor. Some parts of it was slightly dry but paired with the mash was great. The only thing I didn't like about the dish was the sauce. It had really strong flavor...and overpowered everything. So I just tried to eat the parts that weren't covered with the sauce.

Finally, we got a side of the Crab, Mac & Jack Gratin with Pancetta $12~ It's basically their take on mac and cheese. Throw in crab and pancetta only makes it more decadent. haha. This was my other favorite dish of the night. The macaroni was cooked perfectly al dente and super cheesy. I didn't really see any crab or pancetta at all (bummer) but it didn't really matter. It was still delicious. I definitely recommend this dish!

The other group got a couple things I was able to sample:
- Chicken & Waffles $12~ Now I've never had real chicken and waffles, but I have a good idea that this is not the authentic recipe. Victor Tango's put their own spin on it. First of all the chicken was more like chicken tenders (boneless) instead of the regular fried chicken. Second, they had some sort of gravy on there that I couldn't tell what it was. Didn't really have much flavor to me. The combination was interesting though. The sweet waffles with maple syrup with the salty chicken. It was ok... I would really like to try the real chicken and from Roscoe's Chicken and Waffles in Cali or something.

- Braised Mussels with Spanish Chorizo $12~ (sorry didn't get a picture). It came in a pretty good sized bowl. Normally I'm not a mussels fan, but it had a lot of flavor and the mussels were fairly big, I thought.

I wanted to order dessert (which looked huge...also meant for sharing I guess), but we had birthday cake so I decided that I'll just have to go back and get dessert next time! hehe. Also, I've heard that their cocktails were very good. I didn't get a chance to try it this time either. But I will definitely be going back. The food was pretty awesome overall. It's a very lively atmosphere, and the prices were pretty reasonable. So next time I will definitely be getting a cocktail and dessert! hehe...and hopefully I can try some other dishes. If you like hip/trendy places, this is the spot to check out.

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