As you’ve probably figured out from this month’s cover, we love chocolate. And we love our local chocolatiers. From shoes of chocolate to hand-painted pieces, it’s all beautiful and delicious. Before diving into the world of chocolate, I gave a call to DallasChocolate.org founder Sander Wolf. I asked him about the state of chocolate in Dallas, and he told me that “it’s emerging. We’re not San Francisco or New York, but there’s a lot of people doing a lot of good stuff.” One great thing about chocolatiers in Dallas is that everybody has his/her own specialty. “When they get together, there’s virtually no overlap,” Wolf says. “Even if you gave them all the same ingredients, they would turn out completely different.”
To see the result of their work, check out these gorgeous photos by Manny Rodriguez.
And, if you’d like to find out where you can taste some of this chocolate, jump. I’ve included information from DallasChocolate.org about what our favorite chocolatiers are up to this month.
Katrina Markoff of Vosges Haut-Chocolat, the woman who sells bacon chocolate candy bars for $33 a box and probably makes a darn good living from it, is holding two truffle classes (making bacon truffles?? maybe??) in Central Market for a pre-Chocolate Festival event on February 4. The real Chocolate Festival kicks off on February 8 when Central Market hosts some of the hottest chocolatiers at their Dallas, Fort Worth, and Plano locations to show what these superstars can do with mighty fine cocoa beans.
At least now I know what I want for V Day: bacon freakin’ chocolate candy. Whoever mails me a box, wins.
Jump for dates, times, and locations. Continue reading "Chocolate Festival at Central Market, Feb 8-14"
Okay @DSideDish TwEATers, are you lining up for the parade. Tweet details of food and drink, or any other details, to @DSideDish and we will retweet. Have fun.1 Comment »
What is going on around here? First a restaurant won’t split a large bill for a table of eleven, now comes word that Houston’s in Addison won’t put dressing on the side. This note from a long-time Houston’s customer just popped up in my inbox:
Me: “I’d like my dressing on the side.”
Server: “We don’t do sides of dressing anymore, we make the dressing with the salad.”
[Salad is served]
Server: “How’s your salad?”
Me: “Kind of bland, can I get some more dressing?”
Server: “I’m sorry they [kitchen] only make the dressing when they make the salad.”
Me: “But it’s a $14 salad.”
REALLY? On Valentine’s Day? MAKE SOME MORE.
Though this day of romance calls for beautiful dinners out at some of our favorite spots in town, but if you are like me and prefer a quiet dinner at home with your sweetie, or watching The Bachelor with 5 of your friends, take some tips from a few Food Network favorites.
Chopped host, Ted Allen, teamed with Robert Mondavi Private Selection to create a few ideas to help you get in touch with your sweetie using your 5 senses. Make pizza for your Valentine, though not the most elaborate it is supper easy. Head over to Jimmy’s and pick up some pizza dough and impress your date with your pie tossing abilities. Chocolate is a must on Valentine’s - make the house smell decadent with gooey, warm brownies that pair nicely with Mondavi’s Private Selection Meritage, a Bordeaux style blend with black cherry, licorice and chocolate. Make sure the atmosphere is elegant and inviting with candlelight, pictures of you and your sweetie, serve the wine out of a decanter or other beautiful container. Besides the tasty pizza, serve other bites to put you in the mood for love – oysters are a given, but figs and prosciutto are perfect bites to feed your mate. And of course, set the overall tone with great music, Chet Baker, Dianna Krall, Michael Buble or Marc Chon, all great for setting the mood. Continue reading "A New Twist On Romance, Stay Home and Toast On Valentine’s Day"
I love downtown McKinney. Great restaurants, fun shopping that isn’t a bunch of antique shops and quilting rooms, and a vibrant artsy vibe. It’s also family friendly especially at the popular Spoons Cafe. For Valentine’s Day, they’re hosting their annual cupcake decorating and Valentine buffet family feast. Chow down on meatloaf, chicken fried steak, fried okra, mac n’ cheese, and more. And I did mention that you get to decorate your own cupcake, right? Sounds like more fun than dining by candlelight.
This weekend a dining concept that has launched in other cities throughout the country comes to Dallas. For 4 days only, starting Friday night, guests will have an opportunity to really experience a meal, and their date, without the use of one of our key senses, vision. Smell, sound, touch and taste will be at the forefront of the four course meal designed to ignite romance without the use of sight. The experience will occur at The aloft Hotel downtown, more information available here, and below.
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Upon arriving at the Dining in the Dark venue, guests are welcomed in a lighted lounge area where they can order their drinks and preview the menu. Once they have ordered, guests are guided into the darkened dining room for an experience of taste, smell, touch and sound they will never forget.
Diners will enjoy a meal in a literally pitch-black dining room where they are guided and served by blind or visually impaired individuals that have been specially trained to serve meals in the dark, casually and comfortably offering guidance and reassurance for sighted guests.
Dom Perignon exclaimed after his first sips of Champagne that he was drinking stars, and in honor of Valentine’s Day, now is the time to do the same. But it doesn’t have to set you back quite as much as a bottle of Dom will these days will. Here are a few ideas to help with your celebration. Some selections were sent for editorial consideration.
Schramsberg Mirabelle Brut Rose, made from Chardonnay and Pinot Noir grapes from Schramsberg’s Carneros, Anderson Valley, Sonoma County and Marin County vineyards. The bubbly is lively and fresh with strawberry, raspberry and spiced ginger flavors with a toasty finish.5 Comments »
Hearts of Pom
2 oz Riazul Premium Silver tequila
1 oz pomegranate juice
1 oz Cointreau
1 oz fresh lime juice
1 pomegranate (optional)
Mix together ice, Riazul silver, pomegranate juice, Cointreau and lime juice into a cocktail shaker. Shake and strain into a glass. Garnish with a few pomegranate seeds.
While you may not be alone in having not made V-Day reservations yet, you will be alone on the day (all alone) if you mess up this part of the romancing process. Local chefs have done the work for you by preparing canoodle-worthy menus; all you have to do is pick up the phone and reserve two spots.
jump for the full list of this year’s menus… Continue reading "Valentine’s Day Plans Made Easy"6 Comments »