A new restaurant at Toyota Music Factory in Irving wants to bring back a bygone era of fast food.

“We want to give a human element to fast food,” says Steven Fretz, chef and co-owner of the new fast-casual eatery Top Round Roast Beef.

Top Round is all about housemade ingredients. The eponymous roast beef is hand trimmed and slow roasted for 10 hours. The curly fries are made from hand-cut Idaho potatoes and fried in 100-percent beef fat.

“They’re a labor of love,” Fretz says. Even the riff on Cheez Whiz is made in house.

The Irving location is Texas' first Top Round, which opened in Los Angeles in 2013. It's owned by Jason Napolitan and has a whimsical, 1950s nostalgia feel to it.

“We want every store to be its own," he says. "The people who love Top Round in San Francisco aren’t the same people who will love Top Round in Dallas.

There are seven roast beef sandwiches on the menu, including a simple classic, the O.G. Roast Beef ($5.99) with seasoning and au jus. The Horse & Hole ($7.99) is topped with Provel cheese, the St. Louis favorite, as well as horseradish cream and roasted mushrooms.

Do not skip the curly fries. Get them plain ($1.99) or with the housemade Cheez Whiz knockoff ($2.99). Ideally, order the Dirty Fries ($3.99), loaded with gravy, Provel cheese, caramelized onions and round sauce, Top Round’s housemade take on barbecue sauce.

Top Round doesn’t only excel at beef; the chicken is marinated in buttermilk and pickle-brined. The Buffalo Chicken sandwich ($7.99) is pleasantly spicy and comes on a sesame bun, piled with lettuce tomatoes and a generous amount of blue cheese.

The restaurant has even thought of vegetarians. There's grilled cheese ($3.99), and the Veggie Cali sandwich ($4.99) is served with lettuce, tomato, onion, avocado and ranch. You’ll also find kale slaw ($2.99) and a Big Salad ($7.99) with apples, candied pecans, avocado and blue cheese. (Add crispy chicken breast for $3.)

End your meal with the custard.

“We have a Dairy-Ette in California that makes our custard for us. It’s 12 percent butterfat,” Fretz says.

Get a sundae ($5.99), shake ($4.99) or rainbow-sprinkle-dipped cone ($2.99). The concretes ($5.99) come in six varieties, from Turtle, with caramel praline pecans and brownies pieces, to Elvis, with bananas, salted peanuts and hot fudge.

Top Round is open at 8 a.m. daily for breakfast and offers bagel sandwiches ($3.99 to $4.49), breakfast burritos ($2.49), a Greek yogurt banana-nut parfait ($3.99) and tots ($1.99 to $2.99).

From breakfast to sandwiches, Top Round is sensational hangover food. And you’re in luck — it's on UberEats, too.

Presented by Dallas Observer, February 5, 2018

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