If you’re looking for a new spot in Dallas to have great drinks in a swanky setting with family style eats, look no further than Next Door on McKinney Avenue.
You walk up to find a covered patio at the entrance with ample seating, and once you step inside, you’re greeted by a modest dining area situated next to a fully stocked bar. You can dine there for a more authentic dinner experience or head upstairs for a more relaxed feel. A wall lined with door knockers follows you as you take the stairs up to the lounge area. The upstairs lounge is great for groups that want to get together, share appetizers, grab drinks and mingle. The main wall of the lounge is decorated with a unique arrangement of vintage speakers. There is also a balcony for all your fresh air needs.
So, let’s dive into libations. First drink indulged was a Pineapple Habanero Margarita. Talk about a little bit of spice in every sip! The drink is comprised of Sauza Tequila, Patron Mango, Pineapple Juice and Habanero 10. Great drink for the lover of all things zesty. The second cocktail was The Knocker which was a refreshing fruity drink which blended a perfect balance of cucumber and pineapple. The Knocker was so fresh, I almost forgot there was liquor in there! Finally, some bubbly was in order, so I tried the Champagne Colada. It is perfection personified! The coconut rum, vanilla syrup, lime juice and prosecco made the perfect summer cocktail. Light and not too sweet. It is a MUST try.
One thing that makes Next Door stand out is the blended concept of being a bar and a restaurant. This concept lends itself to a family style dining menu, which has a variety of shared plates and pizza. The menu boasts high quality restaurant chow yet the venue exudes laid back vibes you’d get at your favorite bar. Imagine going to a bar for tapas-style family dining; that’s exactly what you’ll get here.
The first soup and salad bite I tried was the Grilled Cheese and Tomato Soup Dumplings. It was a glorious Parmesan dumpling swimming in a bed of tomato soup, a great spin on a classic.
The Cajun Crab Cakes were a HUGE win and my only fault with those was that I hated sharing them. Topping the remoulade and cucumber crab cakes with crawfish was absolutely genius and I cannot wait to eat more.
Now the larger plates are some power players, jam packed with flavor. First up, is the Lemon Pesto Spaghettini. These adorable clumps of lemon pesto covered spaghetti were topped with quail eggs and complimented with pine nuts. The Grilled Sea Scallops were prepared to perfection and were paired with peppers and green beans. The Chimichurri Filet Mignon by leaps and bounds was my favorite. A sliced beef tenderloin filet was topped with Argentinian oregano parsley sauce and served with bi fries.
Finally, the sweet stuff! The Double Chocolate Chip Ice Cream Sandwiches drizzled in caramel were the perfect way to end the day. The chocolate cookies were insanely rich and the vanilla ice cream in the middle was delectable. The cookies were the perfect bite-size and are great for anybody with a sweet tooth.
All in all, Next Door is bringing an original dining experience to Uptown. The blended concept of bar + restaurant allows for quality cuisine you’d expect at a high dollar restaurant but allows for relaxed mingling and social vibe you’d expect at a bar. The next time you’re bar hopping down McKinney, pay your neighbors Next Door a visit.
(Disclaimer: I was given a media pass to attend, and all thoughts are my own.)