TMR has been in Little Rock for six months and these are my Top 10 dishes!
You won’t find any drinks or desserts on this list. And please keep in mind…these are just my favorite dishes from the first six months of living in Little Rock. I’ve only scratched the surface in this town.
10. House Smoked Trout Cake at The Pantry: This appetizer doesn’t look all that impressive, but boy does it pack a ton of smoky flavor. The cake is almost total trout, with very limited fillers and just an overall uniquely wonderful taste.
9. Cheese Steak Sandwich at Philly’s To Go: Thank goodness we can actually get a real, honest-to-goodness Philly cheese steak right here in LR. Tender, thinly sliced beef is mixed with cheese (go with provolone) mushrooms, onions, and peppers…then smashed in a hoagie roll. Have Joel (owner) roll the sandwich up in foil and let it sit a minute. This allows the steam to soften the roll and meld all the ingredients.
8. Single Burger at David’s Burgers: What can I say? This is your traditional, hand-formed, thin patty served with fresh lettuce, tomatoes, pickles, and onions on a soft bun. There’s absolutely nothing glamorous about the burger, and although it resembles a Five Guys’ version, it’s so much better. And I like Five Guys.
7. Petit Jean Ranch Salad at ZAZA’s Pizza: A salad on the list!?! Yup…really by name only. Health food fanatics should probably keep on walking. Chunks of salty ham rest in a tub of greenery that also consists of bacon bits, bell peppers, cherry tomatoes, red onions, croutons, mozzarella cheese, and…of course, a heavy dose of ranch dressing.
6. Skirt Steak Tacos at Local Lime: Big flavors reside in these small, street-esque tacos which are beautifully presented. Corn tortillas are filled with tender beef skirt steak, chopped onions, house-made tres chiles salsa, cilantro (my all-time favorite herb), and a shave of Manchego cheese. I could eat two…or ten of these bad boys.
5. Vino’s Special Pizza at Vino’s: Imagine a standard deluxe topping pizza with some of the thinnest and crispiest crust imaginable. But not that coal-fire, burnt crispy (which I also happen to enjoy) crust. Vino’s pizza is a different beast, but be forewarned…ordering by the slice, rather than an entire pie, is apparently the way to go.
4. Yogurt Plate at Layla’s. Yogurt broth. Yes, yogurt broth. Doesn’t that alone just sound spectacular? Dip a tender piece of accompanying gyro meat in said broth, smash it in the basmati rice, and then cram all that into your pie hole. Repeat process about thirty times and then thank 8-pound, 6-ounce baby Jesus that such a restaurant calls Little Rock home.
3. The Georgie at Hillcrest Artisan Meats: Sometimes simple really is better. Here’s the list of ingredients for The Georgie sandwich: ham, butter, and bread. Go to H.A.M., try it out, and tell me it’s not one of the best sandwiches you’ve ever eaten.
2. Rose’s Famous French Fries at The Faded Rose: The Faded Rose has mastered the art of frying a potato wedge. A pile of these with a cold Abita beer is food heaven.
1. Spicy Chicken and Dumplings at The Southern Gourmasian: Don’t expect your mama’s c&d’s. It looks and tastes nothing like the traditional American version, but it’s sure to put a smile on your face like the original. Shredded chicken, slightly crispy/spongy mochi (rice) cakes, shiitake mushooms, and onions are all mixed together in this culinary fusion masterpiece. Expect a good amount, yet not overpowering heat from this dish.
What are some of your favorite Little Rock dishes?