He’s Michael Ehlert, former executive sous chef at DBGB, the bistro owned by Michelin 3-star chef Daniel Boulud in New York (best known for his Daniel fine contemporary French restaurant) is ready to get going at his new gig in Dallas. Soon he’ll be cooking for Ed Bailey and Eddy “Really Lucky” Campbell at The Chesterfield, which officially opens next Monday but, unofficially, opens this Friday. It is at 1404 Main (the old Doc Bell’s BBQ location). The rumor is that he moved to Dallas from NYC for love, but a steady gig turning out flat breads and small plates must be be like Easy Street to Elhert. Should be good stuff. I hear hes been holed up in a secret kitchen in Dallas. BTW, the room is tiny (40 or so seats plus bar) so this may become one of the hardest reservations to get when they start rolling.3 Comments »
Seekers of authentic Cajun food should head to Andria’s Cajun Cuisine at the junction of Alma and Parker in Plano (SE corner). The unprepossessing strip mall establishment has been open since August and the restaurant offers a straightforward selection of Cajun favorites and off-site catering services. I was alerted to it by a friend who has spent a lot of time in Louisiana and who said it reminded him of countless authentic Cajun shacks that dot the southern Louisiana landscape.
On our first visit we started with Boudin Balls ($5.99). These are boudin rolled into balls rather than stuffed into sausage skins. Andria’s are a hearty blend of pork and rice, maybe fortified with some organ meat. The white dipping sauce had been replaced with a tastier remoulade sauce by the time of our second visit. We also liked the Oyster Po Boy ($8.99). The sandwich bread, bought at Fiesta, was ethereally crusty. The oysters were small but tasty. This sandwich is large enough for two by the way. Crab Corn Soup faithfully projected corn flavor and had a comforting creamy texture.5 Comments »
It’s hard not to feel cooler when you are eating at SMOKE. The place reeks of hip. It’s the kind of place James Dean would meet Jay-Z for brunch if the opportunity presented itself. But attitude can only go so far if you ain’t got the goods to back it up. Luckily, as most people know, Tim Byres, owner of SMOKE, dishes up some truly big flavors, matched only by Byre’s apparent love for capitalization.
I’ve spent a good deal of time exploring the biscuit and gravy scene around town. I’ve generally found that a few places can produce an excellent biscuit, but an exemplary and hearty gravy is really where most fall short, often producing a lifeless blend of flour and water which does more to detract from the biscuit than complement it. However, the handmade biscuits with spicy sausage gravy from SMOKE, have managed to remain a frontrunner in my mind’s race for best B&G in the city.