If you're wearing a vintage T-shirt, sporting a pair of jeans that should have been washed yesterday, and your hair is tied up in a messy bun, don't worry. You'll fit right in at Spiral Diner. Tucked behind a trendy coffee shop in Oak Cliff, Spiral Diner is our Austin representative in Dallas.
It's got the industrial feel of a 60's diner, traces of a 70's hangout, earth conscious and fair trade awareness of 2000, and a tidal wave of vegetarian/vegan selections, unprecedented.
Since when have we been able to order ANYTHING on the menu? It's too much, in a good way. Our waitress had to come back to take our order twice, because we took so long to decide. Normally, you just scan the menu for key words like vegetarian, or hummus, or tofu, or mediterranean...those words usually allude to a meatless meal. But at spiral diner, there's no skimming of the menu.
14 appetizers and sides, 6 salads, 30 entrees, not to mention all of the hot, cold and fizzy beverages...and yes, FIZZY is on the menu!
We started with the "chip & dip party". Served on a Corelle plate with stainless steel bowls, the presentation would look sad anywhere else, but here, it works and it's funky! The chips were seasoned with Paprika. We ordered the Ginger Fizzy drink, and it was refreshing and delicious! Our table's entrees included Jamaican Jerk BBQ San'ich, the Philly Cheez Steak, Bryan's Brutal Tacos, and Hot Hummus Wrap.
The Brutal Tacos were excellent. Very flavorful and inventive. Not brutal as the name claims, but definely has a bit of a kick. Although, I only had a sample, so an entire meal might be brutal...the next morning. The Hot Hummus Wrap was delicious, but may not order that again only because it was not unique to something any of us vegetarians could concoct at home. The Jamaican Jerk San'ich was tasty! Not enough pineapple, but pretty good. The Philly Cheez Steak was tasty, but the sandwich was pretty packed, which made the bottom of the bread a little soggy. Lastly, we ordered dessert - a warm cookie sundae. The ice cream was not my favorite at all, but the cookie, my goodness, the cookie was something I might give up an organ for.
The service was pretty good. Our server was really patient and cordial, which is more than I can say for most Dallas restaurants. The other staff members at the bakery counter were very friendly and you can tell they really take pride in their restaurant.
This place is definitely a must try. And just when you are about to pay at the counter after a satisfying meal, you learn that they have cooking classes too?????
May 17th, Spiral Diner is teaching Vegetarian Protein Alternatives, Sunday 7-9pm...but this one is sold out. I took the last seat!
The baby boomers at the table were super impressed with Spiral Diner. I'm still in shock that I can order anything on the menu! This is a place where I would not come back and order the same thing. There is so much to sample, from the Red Coconut Curry Noodles, to the Spiral Burger, to the Chik'n-less Salad San'ich. Spiral Diner is a playground for vegetarians and vegans.