Where to eat in Fort Worth right now: 7 best comfort food restaurants
January brings cooler weather – usually. We’re in Texas, after all. But when the temperature drops, we turn to the food that warms us. Fortunately, Fort Worth has many options in this area.
This month, Where to Eat is dedicated to the ultimate in body warming dishes: comfort foods.
Billy’s Oak Acres BBQ
Billy Woodrich’s rustic grill place in far west Fort Worth may have a keyword in its name, but is also known for home cooking. Chicken-fried steaks devouring plates are so big that there is hardly any space for the obligatory side dishes: fluffy mashed potatoes with cream sauce and green beans with bacon, as well as freshly made bread rolls. Smoked pork chops, only available on Wednesdays, are possibly the best in town. each weighs about a pound. In addition to excellent grill items, Billy’s also serves excellent burgers.
Originally opened and run by Executive Chef Keith “Buttons” Hicks, this southwest Fort Worth pillar was one of the first restaurants in the area to offer both southern and home-style cookery-oriented dishes. Hicks’ cool rendition of chicken and waffles – made with hand-whipped fried chicken and a freshly made Belgian waffle – helped spread the word about the dish on the ground, and his edgy interpretations of meatloaf, pot roast, and other staple foods have earned the restaurant a lot of recognition .
Drew Thomas’ cozy cafe in Como, Fort Worth has been open for more than three decades and is often considered the home of the best fried chicken in town. You are warned that it will take a while as every order is freshly prepared. It’s worth the wait. The restaurant also serves chicken steak, fried or smothered pork chop, meatloaf, and catfish. There are also an impressive number of vegetables that come as a side dish or as part of a vegetable platter. You can choose from candied yams, mashed potatoes, cabbage vegetables, fried okra, and the rarely seen fried corn on the cob. Freshly made desserts are spinning, but typically include sweet potato tart, sheet chocolate cake, and peach cobbler.
Madea’s Down Home Cooking
This longtime soul food spot in the tiny town of Everman offers an entertaining, happy atmosphere as well as excellent comfort food. Gospel music – or The Game – booms through the speakers as you move through a buffet line, choosing an appetizer like beef tops, smothered turkey wings, and chicken and dumplings first, then your sides rotating but usually containing mac and cheese Broccoli casserole and black-eyed peas. Bread costs extra, but the hot water cornbread is worth the extra pennies – and calories.
Old Neighborhood Grill
Located in the shops of Park Place Village, this cozy cafe is open for breakfast, lunch and dinner and has been a neighborhood favorite since it opened 22 years ago. Owners have changed, but the menu is the same. Try the gourmet pancakes for breakfast. Lunch and dinner have sandwiches, burgers, soups, and plates of chicken steak, grilled pork chops and steak fingers, and more chic dishes like a black Angus ribeye.
Fort Worth has several popular cafes that specialize in home-style cooking, but none are as popular as this historic cafe and restaurant near Southside. Housed in a 1927 building, it’s a magnet for everyone in Fort Worth, from politicians to entrepreneurs. There is often a lunchtime wait when people queue up for dishes of the day like fried pork loin, ham sprouts and stewed cabbage, fried chicken, and grilled chicken livers. End your meal with a slice of freshly made cake.
Mom and Pop’s hidden gem on East Berry serves excellent home cooking in a humble, no frills atmosphere. Owner Stoney Johnson is a master of comfort food classics, from fried chicken to meatloaf to chicken steak. But the restaurant is best known for its oxtails, which are oven baked and incredibly tender. The sides include candied yams, cabbage vegetables, and macaroni and cheese.