#Trending: What’s heating up Dallas’ food scene this month


Food trends come and go. So, how can you tell which tastes are trending today?

We took a data-driven look at the question, using Yelp and SafeGraph, a dataset of commercial points of interest and their visitor patterns, to discover which local businesses have been getting a noteworthy increase in attention this month.

To find out who made the list, we first looked at Dallas businesses on Yelp by category and counted how many reviews each received. Rather than compare them based on number of reviews alone, we calculated a percentage increase in reviews over the past month, and tracked businesses that consistently increased their volume of reviews to identify statistically significant outliers, compared to past performance. Then, we analyzed foot traffic data from SafeGraph to validate the trends.

Read on to see which outposts are closing the year out strong.


Photo: Krystal W./Yelp

This bar and Mediterranean bistro is trending, in comparison to other businesses categorized as “Bars” on Yelp.

Citywide, bars saw a median 1.6% increase in new reviews over the past month, but Paradiso saw a 47.4% increase, maintaining a mixed 3.5-star rating throughout.

It’s not the only trending outlier in the bar category: The Crab Station has seen a 34.6% increase in reviews.

Located at 308 N. Bishop in Oak Cliff, Paradiso specializes in dishes inspired by coastal Southern Europe, such as wild-caught seafood, wood-fired flatbreads and pastas.

Paradiso is open from 11 a.m.–9 p.m. on Monday and Sunday, 11 a.m.–10 p.m. on Tuesday-Thursday and from 11 a.m.–11 p.m. on Friday and Saturday.

Garden Cafe

Photo: Bess D./Yelp

Whether or not you’ve been hearing buzz about Lakewood’s Garden Cafe, the popular traditional American breakfast and brunch eatery has been seeing a lot more foot traffic lately.

While Garden Cafe stayed on par with the median 1.6% increase in new reviews for businesses categorized as “American (Traditional)” on Yelp over the past month, maintaining a mixed 3.5-star rating, the number of visitors to Garden Cafe almost doubled over the same time frame, according to SafeGraph’s foot traffic data.

There’s even more trending in Dallas’ traditional American cuisine scene: Picasso’s has seen a 0.9% increase in reviews.

Open at 5310 Junius St. since 2002, Garden Cafe offers breakfast, brunch and lunch fare in a unique garden setting. Notable menu items to try here include the chicken fried steak, French toast, Country Boy eggs Benedict, veggie burger and build-your-own omelette.

Garden Cafe is open from 8 a.m.–3 p.m. daily. According to SafeGraph, foot traffic is heaviest on Saturdays and Fridays, and attracts a quarter of its total visitors over those two days, with a slowdown on Mondays.

Velvet Taco

Photo: Velvet Taco/Yelp

North Dallas’ Velvet Taco is also making waves. Open at 11700 Preston Road, Suite 600, the popular New American and Tex-Mex chain, which is known for its tacos, breakfast, brunch and more, has seen a 3.2% bump in new reviews over the last month, compared to a median review increase of 1.7% for all businesses tagged “Breakfast & Brunch” on Yelp. In regards to foot traffic, visits to Velvet Taco increased by more than 50% over the past month, according to SafeGraph data.

Velvet Taco features a selection of eclectic taco options on its menu, ranging from spicy tikka chicken, falafel and Nashville hot tofu to Korean-style pork, grilled salmon and slow-roasted beef brisket. Over the past month, it’s maintained a sound four-star rating among Yelpers.

Velvet Taco is open from 11 a.m.–midnight on Monday-Thursday, 11 a.m.–1 a.m. on Friday, 10 a.m.–1 a.m. on Saturday and 10 a.m.–midnight on Sunday. According to SafeGraph, it usually gets busy at noon, 1 p.m. and 8 p.m., and on Saturdays and Fridays, with a slowdown on Mondays.

This story was created automatically using local business data, then reviewed and augmented by an editor. Click here for more about what we’re doing. Got thoughts? Go here to share your feedback.