Last night I had the opportunity to join the monthly wine dinner held at the new location of TJ’s Seafood Market featuring the wines of Dallasite, Mike Merriman. I was a guest of TJ’s owner, Jon Alexis, who firmly believes the best food to pair with wine is seafood, confirming he is in the right business. Not being a huge beef eater, I have to agree. The nuances and layers of flavor you can extract from seafood, either served in its most natural sushi style state, or covered in rich and flavorful sauces make it the ideal canvas to highlight subtleties in various wines from whites to reds.1 Comment »
I spent an early lunch on the lovely patio at Ascension Coffee today. The weather was perfect for a good scooter ride to the Design District, so I partook in Ascension’s deliciously balanced chemex pour-over and caprese style sandwich. Both were fantastic and soothing. I like this place. I wrote some pretty words about it when it first opened. Yet I struggle with the customer service and strict coffee etiquette they follow. (i.e. You can’t get a cortado to go, because it’s not a cortado if it’s not in a glass). Either who, while I enjoyed the breeze and city sounds overlooking Oak Lawn, I noticed a young man bring a valet stand over to the parking lot.
What? Is Ascension getting ready to host some kind of grand opening, jam-packed lunch gala? Even though there are only ~15 spaces in the small lot and not many options beyond that, the coffee-swilling aristocrats and happy hipsters inside Ascension didn’t seem to mind. Why does it need valet?
Over the course of 30 minutes, from about 11:20 a.m. to 11:50 a.m., I watched three cars depart in frustration after they were told to park along Hi Line Dr. if they weren’t going to use valet. Most of the spots were empty in the lot (see photo). To be fair, some folks just handed over their cars and strolled inside without any problems. Even so, I have some issues and questions. Although I didn’t get off my a** to ask the valet why the hell he was claiming domain over the small lot for lunchtime, it seems completely unnecessary to force valet upon patrons at a place that’s supposed to include comfort and convenience.
Dean Fearing just let me know his band is playing at Poor David’s Pub tonight at 7:30. (Secret: Johnny Reno is joining in!) Guess I know which restaurant to review tonight!
This chic is twisted, flip city. That is why we love her. This Valentine’s Day Clapner, of Dude, Sweet Chocolate, is designing 300 limited-edition chocolate hearts. Real hearts. Life size. Solid dark chocolate filled with waffle cone, Cocoa Puffs, and her chocolate crack. They are $45. I’d say hurry.
What’s Sharon Hage not doing these days? Two days ago, I posted about Hage working on the menu for The Rustic, a restaurant opening in Uptown this spring. Whatever pool of dazzling, immortal water she’s drinking, I’d like to have some, too. Now my inbox tells me that she and Barbara Werley, both powerful women in the restaurant business, are donating their efforts to YW’s Sip ‘N Savor event benefitting low-income women. That’s pretty darn awesome.
Press release time! Yay!
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Dallas, TX (Jan. 23, 2013) – Food and wine femmes chef Sharon Hage and Master Sommelier Barbara Werley are pairing up February 28, 6:30-8:30 p.m. at the 2nd annual Sip ‘n Savor event benefiting YW (YWCA of Metropolitan Dallas). Guests will be treated to Hage’s farm-to-fork creations paired with red, white, bubbly and dessert wines hand-selected by Barbara Werley. Both women will be on-hand during the event to meet guests and chat one-on-one about the unique wine and food pairings. The limited-space event will be held at the University Park home of Angela Fontana and Andre Szuwalski.
Werley is one of only 17 female master sommeliers in North America and one of only 190 worldwide. She currently manages more than 33,000 bottles of wine at Pappas Bros. Steakhouse. Hage is lauded for her farm-to-fork-focused cuisine she introduced at her former York St. restaurant. These days she is sharing her food philosophy with other chefs and restaurateurs through her new consulting and menu development company.
“Sip ‘n Savor is a major fundraiser for YW and advances our efforts to help low income women change their lives as they move out of poverty,” says YW CEO Jennifer Ware. “It is a huge honor that these two immensely successful women, Sharon Hage and Barbara Werley, are donating their time, talent and treasure to benefit other women working hard to get themselves and their families out of poverty.”
Space is limited to 125 guests. Tickets are $120 per person or $200 per couple, and are now on sale at http://www.ywcadallas.org/wine/wine-donation.asp. Those who can not attend but still want to support YW can make a donation on that same web page: http://www.ywcadallas.org/wine/wine-donation.asp
Sponsorship support from Central Market and Stacy’s, event ticket sales, and proceeds from the $20 cork pull held during the event will benefit YW.
You can tell a lot about a person based on how they react to unfamiliar meats at the grocery store. There are those that purse their lips at the sight, quickly corralling anyone in tow away to the safety of boneless skinless chicken breasts, as if chased by a drifter. There are the moderates who are less judgey – maybe they do some medium-heat Thai food on occasion, no big deal – but still not that adventurous. At the other end, there are those that hyperventilate at the sight of random meats, grab as much as they can and head for the exit, all along muttering in a paranoid growl about meats and ‘the man.’
Do I have to say it? I’m in the third group. Hell, I think I may be the ringleader. Rabbit, wild boar, sweetbreads, beef cheeks*, tripe, you name it… where do I sign? And I would like to sign something, it would feel more official that way.2 Comments »