- Teresa Gubbins, Culture Map

A novel healthy restaurant in Uptown Dallas has closed: SkinnyFats, which was part of a Las Vegas restaurant chain and located in the West Village, closed its doors at the end of November, after nearly three years.

A spokesperson confirmed that the restaurant was closed permanently, citing a decline in business following the pandemic, and suggested visiting the chain’s six other locations in Las Vegas or Salt Lake City. They’re also opening a location in Denver, which seems like a better suggestion for Dallas, but it’s not open yet so let’s cut the spokesperson a break.

Founded in Las Vegas by colorful entrepreneur Reed Slobusky, SkinnyFats was a cool and innovative fast-casual restaurant that offered a “happy menu” of decadent items side-by-side with a “healthy menu” of dishes 600 calories or less.

The Dallas location opened in the 3700M luxury apartments building on a ground-floor space that was briefly occupied by Nazca Kitchen.

It was one of those places that, if you went, you were pleasantly surprised by how good it was — but it was also maybe not a destination restaurant? Even despite its easygoing, casual atmosphere, moderate prices, full bar, and generous happy hour specials including half-price wine from 3-7 pm.

The menu included burgers, tacos, bowls, and breakfast all day including chicken & waffles, burritos, country-fried steak on cornbread with eggs, avocado toast, and a “morning” mac and cheese with sausage, bacon, scrambled egg, and sourdough crouton bites.

Burgers included a turkey burger with arugula and cranberry on a wheat bun, and not one but two veggie burgers: one made from black bean, with spinach and spicy hummus, and the other a portabella mushroom cap with spinach and avocado.

The dual menu theme was clever, and also had a something-for-everyone functionality, appealing to burger fans and vegans alike. Not enough, however, for flashy Dallas.

West Village is enjoying a major turnover with old-timers like Mi Cocina and Taco Diner either moving on or kicking the curb, and an infusion of new concepts coming in that include artisan ice cream shop Van Leeuwen from Brooklyn and Violet Crown, the Austin-based movie theater that’s going into the old Magnolia space.

And West Village shall surely not lack for healthy options in the future with the 2022 openings of cult salad chain Sweetgreen and Mendocino Farms, the California-based stacked sandwich kings.