Highland Park Soda Fountain
3229 Knox St., Dallas
Hours: 7am–6pm Mon–Fri; 8am–6pm Sat; 10am–5pm Sun.
If you’re feeling nostalgic and happen to be near the corner of Knox and Travis in Highland Park, you’re in the right place. The doors to the Highland Park Soda Fountain and Pharmacy first opened in 1912 and, though it no longer sells prescriptions, not much else has changed. “If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it,” says current owner Gretchen Williams.
While most people come for the atmosphere, it’s the fresh food made from scratch, such as the grilled cheese (served with a side of pickles) or a cup of warm tomato bisque soup, that brings them back time and time again. As a prelude to the famous old-fashioned desserts, you’ll find classic American fare on the menu — everything from Frito pie and hot dogs to BLTs and chicken salad.
And, according to Williams, milkshakes are a must with every meal. “It’s calcium, not calories,” she jokes. You can also choose from Italian sodas, sundaes, floats, freezes and cookies the size of your hand. Ask about their newest menu item: cotton candy, made fresh for weekend customers.
If you can, find a seat on a barstool among the neighborhood regulars. Kids love being near the action of the kitchen, while twisting and turning in place, letting their feet hang free. As the kids polish off their sundaes or shakes, you can browse the seasonal items and gifts, such as scarves and postcards, lining the restaurant wall.