First visit: December 2011
Like many folks who live in NE Tarrant, if I have to go to the airport or to the other side, then I must get on Hwy 114 East. Many times I'll do that via Southlake Blvd, and when you do, you'll see on your right a Kirby's Steakhouse, and then Red Lobster and then... whoa... hold up there. What happened to the Red Slobster? It's gone baby. In its place - Red Dog Right. The RJG doesn't shed a tear when the publicly traded company gets replaced with a more local option. In this case, it's still a (local) chain, but I'm guessing Red Dog Right still isn't ringing a bell. And it won't either, as this is a new entry from the folks at Front Burner Restaurants, founded by a Rockfish Seafood guy (guess he knew Kenny too right?).
Front Burner is behind Ojos Locos, Whiskey Cake, The Ranch at Las Colinas... and their most famous brand is Twin Peaks. The name is a wink-wink deal, and what was originally supposed to go into the Red Slobster spot. But hold on there young feller, the good kindly folks of Southlake ain't havin' none of 'dem near nekkid girls here. Oh for crying out loud, really? You have to love uptight people. Anyone who's spent more than a day with gorgeous women will realize that it's less about exploitation and more about the celebration of beauty, confidence and fitness for the ladies. Look, there's a huge difference between a stripper club and a sports bar with scantily clad women. I understand that heavy levels of testosterone, topless estrogen, lots of alcohol and 3 in the morning is a lethal combination. We don't want that either. Contrast that with 8 at night, the Cowboys game and servers that look like the models from Hee-Haw. So what does a enterprising company do - fight it? Naw, too much effort and why bother. How about a new logo? So Red Dog Right was born. Apparently the restaurant is named after the technical name of a football play. Sounds good to me.
The food is upscale bar food. Like our favorite brewpubs in Colorado (where are they in Texas? Oh don't get me started - I know why...), the food is actually quite good and better than you might imagine. Chef's and cooks all over the country are migrating to taverns such as these to create high quality variations of sandwiches, salads, pizzas and burgers. Rather than chips and salsa, the free opener is a box of buttery popcorn. That's a good idea I think! I went with the basic cheeseburger, which was excellent and stands up well against the specialty burger houses in the area. Mrs. RJG went with an individual Hawaiian pizza (always a risky proposition with the wife). But they nailed it - with the right amount of crispness on the crust, tasty sauce, gooey cheese and excellent ingredients.
Red Dog Right also maintains a robust Texas microbrew selection including the Franconia Lager that I just mentioned on the Love & War blurb. First time I've seen it over here. Good frozen margaritas too.
Oh, I should mention that they provide an assortment of board/parlor games to play, including a fully stocked old-school video game area.
I like this place. Though both Mr. and Mrs RJG wish they stocked it with the babes as originally planned. C'est la vie.