According to owner Phil Silva, Pho Colonial Authentic Vietnamese Diner on Frankford closed yesterday. “We just couldn’t get the traffic in there,” Silva said. “I don’t know if it was us or the location. The place is not very visible from Frankford.” Silva has operated in that space for over five years which included the last days of Bene Bene.
Silva is locked in a courtroom battle with his former partner Khanh Dao, the veteran restaurateur who was involved with Draelion, The Drae Lounge, Steel, and Voltaire. Late last year, Dao was removed from the day-to-day operations because the restaurant was running high (63%) food costs and not making any money. Dao filed a restraining order to keep Silva, the majority owner, from removing her as one of the members of the partnership. The judge denied her request.
I asked Silva about Dao’s whereabouts. “We had a shareholders meeting on Tuesday and she was there,” Silva said. “I have no idea what she is doing. Our lawsuits, we are basically suing one another, is scheduled for August.” Meanwhile, the downtown location of Pho Colonial is open. The chef from North Dallas will run the kitchen.
Georgia Fisher is a reporter for D’s sister publications Park Cities People, Preston Hollow People, and Oak Cliff People. In May, she tagged along on a group trip through Iceland’s capital and countryside. She rocked my world when she enlightened me about Quiznos’ Choose 2 menu.
I figured a vacationing American couldn’t gain weight in Iceland, what with constant hikes and even glacier climbing on our menu. And from what I’d read of the food — which includes sheep’s head, dried fish, rot-cured shark, dead whale, and so on — I didn’t anticipate much comfort eating.
Yeah, I was wrong. Really, really wrong.
Icelandic fish is fantastic, and the country has some of the top restaurants I’ve ever visited. Ever. Imagine the best rib eye you’ve had in Dallas, for instance. Think about its richness, preparation, looks — everything. Then multiply that by two or three, and you’ve got cod (or lamb fillet, another specialty) from Hotel Budir, on Snaefellsnes Peninsula.
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After the Good 2 Go girls brainstormed with Barcadia owners Brooke Humphries and Brianna Larson, a love restaurant was born. Their newest concept, ACME F&B, is a “come-as-you-are fine dining” joint where your old blue jeans might actually find a new home. Tomorrow, June 1, is the soft opening of this casual, but upscale restaurant-bar at McKinney and Monticello.
Expect New American cuisine with seasonal, local, and farm-friendly ingredients. Menu items like the summer chilled green gazpacho, grilled asparagus with roasted beet mimosa salad, chicken and dumplings with rainbow chard gnocchi, and braised rabbit with three onion risotto jus comes just in time for summer.
The press release explains:
The whole animal allocation program at ACME F & B is the first of it’s kind in Texas. This means that the menu will change throughout the evening with regards to the proteins. While a steak is being offered at one point, sweetbreads could be offered at another. O’Hare and Johnson plan to use the finer cuts of meat for ACME F & B, while other cuts such as ground beef or pork will be sent over to Good To Go Taco, Goodfriend Beer Garden and Burgers, their other restaurant, making this a true “farmer-friendly” concept.
O’Hare and Johnson, who have cooked at Stephan Pyles, York Street, Hibiscus, The Green Room, and more, say that they will be doing “honest, straightforward food — familiar and comfortable but with an unexpected twist that draws from their experience working in some of Dallas’ finer kitchens.
Barcadia owners Humphries and Larson are managing the bar, which features 24 beers on tap, 26 wines by the glass, and a specialty cocktail list.
4900 McKinney Avenue, Dallas 75205.
acmefandb.com or 214.443.0003
Hours of operation:
Monday – Thursday 5pm – 10pm; Friday and Saturday 5pm – 11pm.
Every once in a while, usually in a doctor’s office, I come across a magazine article that compels me to tear it out and save for future reference. Thankfully, this piece titled “The Truth Behind Food Labels” is not only in print, you can read it online. In the May-June issue of Audubon magazine, Gretel H. Schueller writes a straightforward guide, for lack of a better word, to the labels on food items that promote an array of feel-good, environment-friendly assertions. You see “cage free,” “hormone free,” “all natural,” “organic,” “fair trade,” and “biodynamic” in stores everywhere. Which designations are authentic? Schueller details the good, bad, and the ugly truths behind the label and the greenwashing of food items. Bullet points:
Free Range: When it comes to “free range” and “free roaming,” all a poultry farmer needs to show is “that the poultry has been allowed access to the outside,”… The animals may get only short periods outside in a cramped area—the USDA considers five minutes adequate to approve use of the claim. There are no restrictions regarding what the birds can be fed.
American Humane Certified: A program of the American Humane Association, this label permits both caged and cage-free options for egg-laying hens. A caged hen can be crammed into a space the size of a sheet of paper. Forced molting through starvation is prohibited, but beak cutting is allowed.
Dolphin Safe: This is a partially certified claim because the National Marine Fisheries Service verifies only tuna caught from a specific region—the eastern tropical Pacific Ocean—and not all tuna. Tuna from this designated area might bear a label that includes the additional phrase “US Department of Commerce.” Tuna caught outside this area and labeled “dolphin safe” has not been independently substantiated. To muddy the waters further, the dolphin-safe label is not licensed by any single organization, so there are no universal standards in place and most companies have developed their own logos.
The bottom line: If you see Cruelty Free, Cage free, Environmentally Friendly, Nature’s Friend, No Chemicals, Vegetarian Fed on a package, disregard it. The vague labels mean nothing and have no standards to back them. Anybody can say any of those things about anything. Trust is gone. (This post was written in a certified caged and toxic environment.) READ THIS NOW.7 Comments »
Celebration Farmers Market will host one of my favorite vendors again this week. If you’ve never tried the infused oils and vinegars from Texas Olive Ranch, you’re missing out. I’m particularly partial to the Rattlesnake flavor. It combines infusions of chipotle and red peppers that pair well with balsamic vinegars to make a tasty, guilt–free salad dressing. Holleman Farms will also have pastured beef, chicken and eggs. All their farmers have great cucumbers right now, and they’re the perfect jar-friendly size for pickling.
4515 W. Lovers Ln.
Saturday, 8:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m.
Coppell Farmers Market: When Mike Powell retired from Lucent Technologies, he made growing stone fruits and tomatoes on his 1.5 acre plot in Forney a full-time hobby. He’ll make the trip out to Coppell Saturday with his plums, peaches and apricots.
This just in from Alaska: wild caught Coho salmon from Sam’s Salmon shipped here by Sam and sold to you by his mom, Kathy Johnston. Get it while it’s still here. Supplies are running low.f
793 S. Coppell Rd.
Saturday, 8:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m.
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TJ’s Seafood Market, the fish-and-more-and-beyond shop in Preston Forest, is adding a second location next door to Julian Barsotti’s recently opened Carbone’s in the Shops at Highland Park. Jon Alexis, the king salmon of the family-run business says there will be no changes to the original market which has been open since 1989. The new space will offer daily specials of fresh seafood dishes and tables and chairs for 24 diners. “For the last 3 years we’ve visited seafood markets from coast to coast and cherry picking our favorite ideas,” Alexis says. “We will operate like they do on the coasts: If you ask for 2 servings of grilled Bay Of Fundy salmon, you’ll see the salmon taken out of the case and eat it (along with two sides) 10 min later.”
Alexis is out to break consumer’s assumptions that Monday’s fresh raw fish is Wednesday’s blue plate special. “At TJ’s, the fish case is the menu. You will get the same fresh fish served at the best chef-driven fine dining restaurants in Dallas,” Alexis said. “ We’ll prepare authentic, classic, “fish-driven” preparations: ceviches, sashimi, raw oysters, fish tacos, soups and stews, boiled and steamed shellfish, and lots of regional, healthy fish.” And you can eat all of it in your flip flops.
“Italian markets and seafood markets are common neighbors in other cities,” Alexis said. “Julian and I are already discussing ways to partner and provide a truly unique shopping experience.” The opening date is targeted for Oct 1. The address is 4212 Oak Lawn Avenue.
I just caught up with Eddie (Primo’s and Hully & Mo) Cervantes. The veteran Dallas restaurateur is set to open E Bar Tex-Mex on Haskell in “two to three weeks.” It’s a small space: there is room for only two cooks in the kitchen, the interior seats 42, the patio seats another 44, and there are 16 more stools at the bar. “It’s nothing extravagant,” Cervantes says. “I just wanted to start over from scratch and have fun.” Cervantes is calling all of his old chef buddies who used to hang at Primo’s late at night. “Dean has been in and he loves it,” Cervantes said. “He says he’s gonna bring in all of his industry friends.” (1901 North Haskell Avenue)6 Comments »
Here’s what I like most about my job: spreading the word about organizations that support Dallas and put their blood, sweat, and tears into making our city a better place to live. The GDRA (Greater Dallas Restaurant Association) is holding a pop up fundraiser on Sunday, June 3, from 6 to 9 p.m. in order to raise money for over 30 high schools in the area that teach TXProStart, a two year culinary/hospitality arts program for students interested in culinary arts and restaurant management.
Teachers like Faye Blackmon from Duncanville High School have inspired countless kids to enter the restaurant industry, armed with knowledge and passion. I personally witnessed the kind of transformation these culinary programs have on our youth when I spent three hours at Duncanville High School, admiring these high school students’ skills as I watched them prepare complicated dishes for the ProStart competition.
Jump for more details. Continue reading "2012 Chefs of Summer Auction: Buy Your Tickets Now"
It’s been a weird morning. I was listening to NPR this morning and jamming out to the show, “Marketplace,” when I heard about Felony Franks, this hot dog joint in Chicago where Jim Andrews, the owner, hires ex-inmates and gives them a chance in the restaurant business. The menu is prison-themed with names like “Misdemeanor Weiner” and “Convicted Chili Fries” that don’t hide Andrews’ mission to help out his community in a non-traditional way. I walked out of my car, still thinking about what I’d just heard on NPR when I ran into a friend who told me about her crazy mugging story in New York City. The guy who stole her cell phone was sentenced to jail for three months after the cops found him.
Why don’t we have something like this in Dallas? I can see why some critics don’t find the concept cute, but it’s hard to deny the fact that Felony Franks is still doing the community a lot of good. Check out this WSJ vid:4 Comments »
Sander Wolf of DallasChocolate.org has booked the Addison Conference Centre on September 29 for the Third Annual DallasChocolate.org Chocolate Conference & Festival. Wolf says he’s booked over a dozen chocolate makers and chocolatiers to participate in the day-long celebration of chocolate. So far they are:
Tejas Chocolate (Houston), Rogue Chocolatier (Boston), and Dallas chocolatiers Chocolate Secrets, Wiseman House, Dr. Sue’s Chocolate, Oh Brownie, The Dark Chocolate Bakery, Pure Chocolate Desserts by Zach, Toffee Treats, Elegantly Chocolate, Collin College, and Sublime Chocolate.
There are two components to The Chocolate Conference & Festival 2012: sampling chocolate and learning about it from classes taught by experts. The day begins with a Chocolatierʼs Roundtable, a free-flowing discussion with all participating local chocolatiers. Stay tuned. More to come.
Jason Maddy is well on his way to becoming the next rock star chef in Dallas. Until now, he has cooked in the shadows of some big names, working as a sous chef under David Bouley at Danube, in Manhattan, and David Bull at the Driskill Hotel, in Austin. John Tesar tagged Maddy as his chef de cuisine at The Rosewood Mansion on Turtle Creek. He stayed on after Bruno Davaillon took over in 2009, leaving two and a half years later to become executive chef at Oak.
Now the 35-year-old finally has the spotlight. Oak opened in the Design District in mid-December. Barely a week later, word began to spread that something special was happening. I got calls from several restaurateurs asking, “Who is this guy?”
A day late this week. Quite a few of the food trucks busted their chops at Lone Star park on Monday and are taking it a little slower this week. Several are completely on vacation. Good Karma is taking the week off while their truck is back at Cruisin’ Kitchens getting tuned up and updated for them to spend more time in Dallas.
Jump for your schedule. As always, and especially this shortened week, check Facebook and Twitter feeds before venturing out. Continue reading "Dallas/Fort Worth Food Truck News and Schedule for week of May 28"
We sent D Magazine intern Teo Soares to the DEBC’s Brew-B-Q on Sunday. He came back with this report.
It’s Sunday and I’m in line for barbecue at Deep Ellum Brewing Co.’s Brew-B-Q. Before the day ends, about 800 people will wade through the crowds at DEBC’s beer garden and stand in line for tapped kegs. They wear plaid shirts and shorts and summer dresses that show an occasional tattoo on an ankle or a shoulder blade, and when the sun sets, their Ray-Ban glasses hang from their necks.
This is the brewery’s second Brew-B-Q, but the first to take place at DEBC’s facility. A year ago, this space was little more than an empty warehouse, and DEBC hosted the event at Life at Deep Ellum, a cultural center next door. This year’s event is an opportunity to showcase their facility, which now boasts five tanks and a beer garden that faces Malcolm X Boulevard. “We want people to get to see this place,” says Tait Lifto, the brewery’s “Brand and Sales Ninja.” He continues: “This house is built for people.”
I have been drinking some delicious Old World wines lately, or specifically wine from France, Italy, Spain, Germany and Portugal. The beauty of Old World wine is the heritage, tradition and dedication to the grapes and terroir driven wines vintners and wine makers have had for centuries. It is similar to acknowledging the significance of classic French cuisine, we wouldn’t be where we are today without the solid roots of what has been in place for decades. Another bonus, many stellar wines from throughout Europe are very reasonably priced, giving you a great bang for your buck bottle of wine you are happy to serve at a dinner party. Some regions and varietals are still relatively unknown to wine drinkers throughout the United States, making Old World wine sometimes difficult to understand, however with a little bit of insight and research you will uncover a delicious bottle with ease. Here are a few Old World wine wine suggestions to try. I will follow up with red suggestions in the next few days. A few selections were sent for editorial consideration, some have simply caught my eye on the shelf at my local wine shop or that was on special at Central Market during their French extravaganza.
I helped host a charity dinner the other evening with a hope to introduce guests to a few wine selections that they may not try on their own, a common goal I have when hosting, first pouring the very reasonably priced Segura Viudas Brut Reserva Cava, surprising guests that a $10 bottle of bubbles could taste so good.
Next I poured a French white I picked up at Central Market that their in-store specialist suggested, an unusual combination of varietals you don’t see very often – Ugni Blanc and Colombard from Domaine du Tariquet. Ugni Blanc (or Trebbiano when made in Italy) and Colombard are both better known for their use in Cognac, but blended together create a light, crisp and floral wine with balanced acidity and good fruit, pairing well with a salad made with Spicer greens, Asian pear and crushed walnuts from Chef Mark Wootton of Garden Cafe. Continue reading "What To Drink Now: Old World White Wine"2 Comments »
Readers are looking for places to eat tonight. If you are a restaurant, or a very generous family, leave your info in the comments section below.10 Comments »
Many feel Copper River salmon is best wild salmon in the world. Others think it’s a fine fish with a fabulous marketing department. Seafood snobs refer to it as Stupid River Salmon because they feel it is over-hyped and over-priced. Three years ago, SideDish conducted a blind tasting of salmon. Jammin With Wild Salmon took place at TJs Market. Twelve SideDish readers compared Atlantic farm-raised salmon, ocean-caught wild troll king salmon, and Copper River salmon. You can read the reults here.
The good news for Copper River salmon groupies is that some CRS did arrive in Dallas earlier this week, BUT nobody obtained king salmons because nobody caught any. Makes sense, right? I mean they are called wild for a reason. They show up when they show up. Rick Oruch of Sea Breeze Market expected a shipment of kings yesterday but there were none available. However, I guess the kings showed up yesterday at the Copper River. Jon Alexis from TJs Market is at the airport picking up his order as I type. Brace yourself, the king runs around $45 a pound. Who cares! It’s Memorial Day Weekend! Omega-3s for all!
Auction Napa Valley, one of the largest charity events in the country, is put on annually by the Napa Valley Vintners Association in collaboration with their 400+ Napa Valley winery members. In their 32nd year, and after donating over $100 million to health, youth and affordable housing non-profit programs, the auction continues to show guests both from the valley and throughout the world why Napa is so special. I was a guest of the Napa Valley Vintners Association to the auction last year and I encourage anyone who can attend to make your plans. If you aren’t able to attend, you can still be a part of the fun by checking out the incredible online e-auction which starts Sunday. It includes 150 items donated from member wineries and the list is impressive: large format bottles, trips, wine experiences, and more.
The start of the auction got me thinking about how many wineries really give back to their community and to various charities they believe in. I have personally partnered with dozens of wineries who have given donations to charitable dinners hosted through Dallas Uncorked, and have attended dozens more where different wineries have stepped up to help because they believe in the cause. I have been compiling a list of some of my favorites that do a great job of either giving back via charitable organizations, or through foundations or charities they have started.
Bradford Pearson over at Oak Cliff People just alerted me to a good deal that ends before 3 p.m. today. If you follow these simple steps from Cafe Brazil’s website, you can earn yourself a free spicy chicken sandwich.
- Must purchase a drink – any drink
- You must print off this blog post and present it to your server or show it on your smartphone/iPad/laptop/etc.
- Not valid on to-go orders
- Offer valid while supplies last
This offer only applies to the Bishop Arts location, and make sure you print off the blog post that I linked in the instructions (so, obviously not this SideDish one). Have fun eating, then tell me how it compares to Chick-fil-A’s spicy chicken sandwich, will ya?
There must be close to 30 restaurants now in the Preston Forest Shopping Center. A Disher with a cell phone and an urge to try a St. Louis-style pizza from Tomato Pie in the former Wolfe Camera store in southwest quadrant sends a pic and a quick review.
I’ve had matzo with more flavor than their crust. But the toppings were generous. Their house dressing is a kind of honey-mustard-ish (hubby says no) sweet/sour type. Mediocre at best.
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Dishers, where did you dine and what did you eat this week? Here is what you reported last week.