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With a Dallas chef’s help, Mercury Chop House adds new salads

Posted 12:00am on Tuesday, Jun. 25, 2013

Mercury Chop House is all new again, just in time for the updated Sundance Square.

Former presidential chef Chris Ward has retooled the lunch menu and started on dinner. Both Mercury and neighbor Cowtown Diner are rolling out homestyle cakes and pies.

With more competition from a Del Frisco’s Grille coming soon nearby, it was time to refresh Sundance’s anchor steakhouse.

“We’ve worked with Chris forever, and he has great new ideas,” Mercury manager Rabii Moutaouakil said.

Ward, chef at the Mercury restaurant in Dallas, helped open the Fort Worth location when the two were affiliated.

Now, he’s consulting for friends Rabii and Zack Moutaouakil, adding lunch items such as a watermelon-citrus salad and a strawberry spinach salad.

Ward is also helping revamp Cowtown Diner, an upscale comfort-food concept that got off to a rocky start under a different owner.

“We have some very faithful lunch and breakfast customers,” Rabii Moutaouakil said. After Ward changes the menu, he said, “We want more people to try a Diner dinner.”

It’s off to a good start with new pies. One night last week, choices included a steakhouse-quality coconut meringue (also available at Mercury), chocolate meringue, apple, peach, buttermilk and pumpkin pies.

Mercury Chop House is open weekdays for lunch and dinner and weekends for dinner; 301 Main St., 817-336-4129, facebook.com/mercury.c.house.

Cowtown Diner opens for breakfast mornings at 8 and serves lunch and dinner weekdays and Saturdays, lunch only Sundays; 817-332-9555, cowtowndiner.com

Catfish on Cooper

Arlington’s great food is served in several languages.

Cajun House is the latest example. The Nguyen family’s new seafood restaurant has the look and feel of an Asian restaurant but the flavor of a Gulf bayou.

The restaurant specializes in crab and crawfish boils with corn and sausage, but also offers eight different gumbos and étouffées, plus flaky fried catfish platters and po-boy sandwiches.

The catfish might be the best south of Interstate 20. Cajun House is open for lunch and dinner daily at 5005 S. Cooper St., near Zio’s; facebook.com/CajunHouse.

A burger — and a big ’un

In central Arlington, Burger Xtreme is a bilingual haven for burger lovers.

An Xtreme burger is a quarter- or half-pound of beef, hand-packed and served on a full-size, 5-inch bun, like a handmade Whataburger.

A choice of 10 toppings ranges from hickory to pineapple. There’s also a turkey burger, chicken sandwiches and Philly cheesesteaks.

The price is right: $4.50 for the basic burger, $5.75 for a half-pound.

Burger Xtreme is open for lunch and dinner daily at 1121-A W. Arkansas Lane, 817-462-8117, or at an older Fort Worth location, 6401 McCart Ave., 817-294-4044; burgerextremefortworth.com/

Bud Kennedy's Eats Beat appears Wednesdays in Life & Arts and Fridays in DFW.com. 817-390-7538 Facebook: Bud Kennedy's Eats Beat Twitter: @EatsBeat Get alerts at RebelMouse.com/budkennedy

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