I think almost every other day we hear about new restaurants opening in Dallas, and it’s sometimes hard to keep up with them all. When we heard about Matchbox opening up in Preston Hollow Village, we were eager to try, because we’d heard such good things about its flagship on the East Coast.
The Matchbox location is spacious and inviting (the decor reminded us a little of the industrial feel at Happiest Hour in Harwood) situated right off the highway in Preston Hollow Village. The bar is fully stocked, and the kitchen is open, so you can see the oven cranking out wood-fired pizzas and other goodies.
We started with drinks – we opted for the Opposites Attract – vodka, grapefruit, thyme syrup and IPA. It was so refreshing and (dangerously) easy to drink. While we sipped on handcrafted cocktails, we noshed on bites from the happy hour menu. Favorites included the charcuterie board (will forever be a go-to menu item for me), lobster rolls (which do not include a binder – aka mayo – simply lobster + butter), and, of course, the pizzas. The pizzas were light yet crispy, and the fresh ingredients on top made for the perfect ‘za. The prosciutto + fig pizza was definitely a favorite.
It was hard not to make a meal out of the happy hour appetizers we had, but we forced ourselves to so we could taste the dinner menu. We started with their famous 3.6.9 mini burgers. The beef was flavorful, the bread was perfect, and the crispy onion strings on top were some of the best I’ve ever had. The mini ahi tuna tacos were next – not being a fan of seafood, I opted out, but heard nothing but good things from others at the table.
Next came the salads and dinner entrees. The beet +burrata salad stood out – normally, we’re hesitant to eat beets because they can be so earthy tasting, but these were cooked perfectly, and the creamy burrata complemented the slightly earthy flavor well. Dinner entrees included baked salmon, seafood pasta with mussels + shrimp in a white wine butter sauce, and my personal favorite, braised short ribs with honey butter cornbread. The cornbread was a table favorite, probably because it was coated in honey butter (think: honey butter chicken biscuits). The short ribs were perfectly prepared, too, falling apart as you ate them.
It was evident from every dish we tasted that there is a real passion behind the cooking at Matchbox. All of the ingredients are super fresh – the freezers are only used to store ice cream. The attention to detail is also impeccable – the team tasted dozens of pickles until they found the right one, and the spears are not cut until ordered.
Matchbox may be known for its pizzas and sliders, but there’s so much more to it than that, and it’s a welcome addition to the Dallas restaurant scene. We’re already planning our trip back to sit on the spacious patio to sip on the potent patio pounder lemonades from the bar. Join us?
xo – kels