The 10 Best Restaurants in Arlington

Arlington, Texas is not only a central part of the Dallas-Fort Worth Metroplex but also a growing hotspot for food enthusiasts who enjoy both local and international dishes. With everything from smoky barbecue to creative cuisine, Arlington’s lively restaurant scene encourages visitors to start a culinary adventure that excites taste buds and enhances the travel experience.

Here are the top 10 must-visit restaurants in Arlington, each providing a unique dining experience.

The Tipsy Oak

In the bustling downtown of Arlington, The Tipsy Oak offers a lively backyard barbecue vibe complete with Southern charm. The menu delights guests with a range of flavors, starting with smoked brisket cheese fries and leading up to the signature Tipsy Burger, slathered in a secret house sauce. Amid live music and rustic picnic tables, diners enjoy an open-air atmosphere that captures the essence of community and delicious meals.

The Tipsy Oak becomes a lively center of laughter and conversation, drawing both locals and visitors. The outdoor area, adorned with string lights and live guitar music, provides the perfect setting to savor robust, tasty dishes that exemplify Texas hospitality. This restaurant is a favorite spot for both casual meals and festive gatherings, embodying the true spirit of Arlington and making it a must-visit for an authentic local experience.

Hurtado Barbecue

Hurtado Barbecue has quickly become a staple in Arlington’s food scene, growing from a popular food truck to a must-visit restaurant on East Front Street. Known for its Texas Trinity platter, the restaurant offers a mouth-watering selection of spare ribs, brisket, and sausage, all showcasing the authentic, smoky flavors of traditional Texas barbecue. The welcoming, laid-back setting makes it a favorite among both locals and newcomers.

The appeal of Hurtado Barbecue lies in its straightforward approach and dedication to quality. Every dish is prepared using traditional smoking methods that lock in rich, intense flavors. The comfortable atmosphere fosters long conversations and the sharing of stories, cementing its place as a community hub where both barbecue aficionados and those looking to experience real Texas culture love to gather.

Pappasito’s Cantina

Pappasito’s Cantina combines the lively flavors of Tex-Mex cuisine with the warm, festive spirit of Greek hospitality. The family-owned restaurant is decorated with vibrant colors and offers an innovative menu, highlighted by dishes like the Sweet Chile Quail which creatively merges bold Texan spices with traditional Mexican guacamole. This dish exemplifies the restaurant’s flair for blending cultural culinary traditions.

The atmosphere at Pappasito’s is just as vibrant as its food, featuring a distinctive water tower that adds a unique touch to the setting. The environment is always festive, filled with laughter and the sounds of celebration, making each dining experience feel like a lively party. More than just a place to eat, Pappasito’s offers a dynamic destination where each meal is an occasion and every dish tells a story.

Restaurant506 at The Sanford House

Restaurant506 at The Sanford House provides an upscale dining experience in one of Arlington’s most scenic settings. Specializing in elegant American cuisine, dishes like seared scallops and duck confit are presented with artistic flair, enhancing both the visual and taste experience. The tranquil ambiance, coupled with a focus on fine dining, makes this restaurant perfect for special occasions or a romantic night out.

Every aspect of Restaurant506, from meticulous service to gourmet dishes, exudes exclusivity and luxury. The restaurant offers a relaxing escape, where the sophisticated decor and delicious meals complement each other, creating a memorable dining experience. It exemplifies Arlington’s ability to offer sophisticated yet approachable dining options, securing its place as a distinguished establishment in the local culinary landscape.

Bay 34th Street Diner

Bay 34th Street Diner brings a touch of New York’s dynamic dining atmosphere to Arlington, blending big-city flair with Southern comfort in its menu. Whether you’re in the mood for a spicy Cajun omelette to start your day or a light, healthy Mamma Mia Wrap, this stylish diner caters to all tastes. The modern, urban-chic decor enhances the dining experience, making it suitable for both quick meals and relaxed dining.

More than just a place to eat, Bay 34th Street Diner is deeply involved in the community by helping at-risk youth gain culinary skills and job opportunities. Dining here means supporting a cause that benefits local young people, giving patrons a sense of contribution to both the community’s future and its culinary scene. This commitment to good food and good deeds makes the diner a valued establishment in Arlington.

4 Kahunas Tiki Lounge

Discover the lively 4 Kahunas Tiki Lounge, Arlington’s slice of tropical paradise in Urban Union. This lounge offers a genuine island feel with its exotic cocktails and delicious small plates from the nearby Cartel Taco Bar. Surrounded by Polynesian-inspired decor and a relaxed atmosphere, it’s the ideal place to relax and enjoy a diverse menu that takes you on a flavorful journey.

Step into the 4 Kahunas Tiki Lounge for a true island escape in the center of Arlington. Every detail of the lounge, from the authentic decorations to the soothing tropical music, creates a festive tropical vibe. Each drink is carefully crafted, enhancing evenings dedicated to relaxation and exploration. This makes the lounge a top spot for both Arlington residents and visitors looking to experience something unique and refreshing.

Mariano’s Hacienda

Step into Mariano’s Hacienda for a taste of Tex-Mex tradition blended with modern cooking. This Arlington favorite is known for its historic touch—being home to the world’s first frozen margarita machine. The restaurant’s rustic decor, complete with skylights and stucco walls, creates a warm Texan ambiance where diners can enjoy specialties like poblano al carbon paired with their renowned frozen margaritas.

Mariano’s Hacienda delivers more than just a meal; it provides a dining experience rich with local heritage. Here, every dish offers a taste of Texas history, and the ranch-like atmosphere along with friendly service makes it a perfect place for those looking to immerse themselves in Arlington’s cultural and culinary scene.

Piccolo Mondo Italian Restaurant

Piccolo Mondo Italian Restaurant has been a cornerstone of authentic Italian cuisine in Arlington for nearly forty years. Known for its passion and precision in creating memorable dining experiences, this restaurant caters to both festive celebrations and quiet romantic evenings. Its commitment to tradition is showcased in every dish, from veal scallopini to homemade tiramisu, all served with exemplary service.

The allure of Piccolo Mondo extends beyond its delicious food to the cozy and sophisticated atmosphere it offers. Each meal is more than just eating; it’s an experience that draws from decades of culinary excellence, blending classic and modern cooking techniques. It’s the perfect gathering spot for food enthusiasts looking to enjoy meaningful moments, enhanced by genuine Italian hospitality.

Prince Lebanese Grill

Prince Lebanese Grill in Arlington is a celebration of Mediterranean culture, known for its authentic Lebanese dishes like falafel and shawarma. Featured on national TV, this restaurant offers a relaxed setting with outdoor seating that enhances each dining experience under the Texas sky, giving it a festive atmosphere.

The restaurant’s charm goes beyond its food, fostering a sense of community where diners share meals and stories, making everyone feel like family. This welcoming approach ties the restaurant closely to Arlington’s cultural scene, making it a favorite among both locals and visitors looking for true Lebanese flavors.

Vault Seafood and Steakhouse

Vault Seafood and Steakhouse is a top destination for fine dining in Arlington, known for its exclusive and luxurious ambiance. With a reservations-only policy, the restaurant ensures an elite experience with great attention to detail and a superb menu that includes dishes like Chilean sea bass and bison ribeye. The background of live piano music adds a touch of sophistication, enhancing the dining atmosphere.

Upon entering Vault, guests are greeted with a setting of refined elegance, where the decor exudes subtle luxury. The dining experience at Vault is designed to engage all the senses, not just the taste buds. It’s more than a meal—it’s a comprehensive sensory experience. Vault’s dedication to high-quality food and exceptional service makes it a must-visit for anyone looking for the best in upscale dining in Arlington.

Each of these restaurants captures the vibrant and varied essence of Arlington, turning it into a haven for food lovers. Whether you’re in the mood for traditional Texas barbecue, unique international cuisine, or classic American meals, Arlington’s food scene delivers a delightful slice of the city’s diverse culture.