Question 1: What is that in the picture?
Question 2: Where is it?4 Comments »
Unfortunately, Uncle Nancy wasn’t feeling well yesterday, so she sent me along with People Newspapers photographer Christina Barany to cover The Last Supper at Aurora. Chef/owner Avner Samuel said he was going to pull out all of the stops on this dinner, and he most certainly did. It was an elaborate 11-course meal that consisted of some of the most exquisite ingredients around. Think black summer truffles, prime osetra caviar, and gold-leaf garnishes. And the service was superb – the waiters were polite and attentive. It was my first time to dine at Aurora, and I’m heartbroken that I won’t be able to return like so many of Avner’s loyal customers have over the years. I can easily say it was the best meal that I have ever had. But my post-meal happiness quickly turned to panic when I received the bill. I thought this was literally going to be my last supper. I was either going to die of a heart attack right then and there, or Uncle Nancy was going to kill me with her bare hands for somehow managing to rack up a $560 ticket. I tossed and turned all night trying to figure out the best way to break the news to Nancy, none of which really sounded like great options. I thought up story after story, but I decided the truth was the way to go. Jump for Nancy’s reaction and the recap.23 Comments »
Frequent blog commenter Bill Kennedy, known by “BK” and “BillUSA99,” passed away yesterday after a long battle with pancreatic cancer. He was 55.
Teresa Gubbins knew Bill and writes a lovely post about the talented, knowledgeable reader who rarely let a dumb post or comment escape his candid opinion.
I’ve pulled a few of BillUSA99’s comments from SideDish. The energy he devoted to voicing his opinions about Dallas and the Dallas food scene will be missed.
On Dave Faries Leaving Observer:
“It’s so much fun to watch people raise effigies of praise to wanna-be food op-ed writers. Years of Chowhound contributions? PUHleeeeze… all you get from that is crabs.”
On Re-Opening of Green Room:
“Nowhere do the new owners say they are trying to recreate anything of the former Green Room, except for the price point-food value ratio. Nowhere. So anybody that is lamenting that they won’t be able to fill the old shoes, or it won’t be the same without Cassel, or they can hardly wait ’cause it was their FAV place, should take a chill pill and lie down till it opens. Then decide.Until then, it’s just much ado about nothing.”
On Heritage Turkeys:
“We brined a heritage turkey last year. Brining does *not* make up for the decided lack of edible flesh on a heritage turkey. It in no way tastes any “better” than a brined, cage-raised turkey. If you want a heritage turkey, get one 3-5 pounds larger than you normally would if you want leftovers. Which, after all, is the only point in cooking a turkey!If you don’t care for turkey, they won’t help. Eat a cheeseburger instead.”
On the movie Julie & Julia:
“The movie is going to some good business, but it is ultimately a chick or older date flick. It’s a movie. People don’t get fat in movies like this. And fat people only get to play Rene Zelwigger parts after a weight gain. Not this movie. Finally, if the movie was about the life of Julia Child, and NOT interwoven with the present blog/book, then it WOULDN’T be a movie about Julie and Julia and the blog…. DUUUUUHHH?!”4 Comments »
Spirits at El Centro are low—the founder of the school’s chef apprentice program, Chef Werner Voglei, died last Tuesday. The DMN has the full story. Voglei inspired many chefs in Dallas. He is already missed. Services are today at 2 p.m at the Knights of Columbus Hall, 10110 Shoreview Road in Dallas.1 Comment »
According to a loyal Disher, Randy Goss, c0-founder of County Line Barbecue restaurant has been found dead in a car submerged in a creek. Our loyal Disher reports:
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I’ve known Randy since I was in elementary school. He and my sister are the same age, graduated high school together at H.P. His dad’s business was a big used car lot on Ross Avenue. People of a certain age no doubt remember the big yellow sign: Goss On Ross, Your Tradin’ Hoss.” Goss and a couple of other Highland Park boys headed to Austin and UT after high school and soon opened their first barbecue place west of town. It was a home run from the start….had live music in the early years, too.
When Gina Campisi decided to open Fedora in the One Arts Plaza, she agreed to be a guest blogger here on SideDish. She wrote several Restaurant 101 posts chronicling her experiences. I’ve pulled a couple of my favorites.11 Comments »
A Campisi family friend confirms that Gina Campisi, of the Egyptian Lounge Campisis and owner of Fedora Restaurant in Dallas, was found dead today of an apparent suicide in her East Dallas home. Our thoughts are with the family.30 Comments »
Many of us in and around the restaurant business have vivid stories to tell about Darryl Beeson. He was an easy going and friendly guy. Besides wine, he loved jokes. Almost every conversation started with one. Good or bad, you always laughed at Darryl’s jokes. Darryl Beeson died late yesterday after complications from a car accident. He was only 54. Details on Darryl’s funeral are still pending.
Savor Dallas co-founder Jim White had a long personal and professional history with Darryl. Below, Jim remembers Darryl Beeson.
UPDATE: Memorial service for Darryl Beeson is Friday February 5 at 3:30 p.m. at Restland in Dallas.
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Darryl Beeson’s Class–and a class act.
by Jim White
The first time I ever met Darryl Beeson he seemed very professorial. Maybe it was his tweed jacket, vest, bow tie, horn rimmed glasses and Adolphe Menjou mustache. Or, perhaps it was his thorough awareness of “things” and his tendency to conduct “mini-seminars” on them. He could talk about everything from sports and current events to broadcasting or social-scene gossip. But it was his encyclopedic knowledge of wine that impressed me as I got to know him. He was producing Jody Dean’s midday talk show in the winter of 1994 when I returned to Dallas to become KRLD’s morning news anchor. I was also charged with developing a “Restaurant Show.” Something operations director Michael Spears had been quite keen on while we were still in Chicago plotting our return to Big D. Darryl was to be my producer for the program, slated to start in the spring of 1995. I was quite intimidated by the prospect of hosting a program devoted to cooking and wine. I did very little of the former, although I could hold my own with the latter. But since Spears knew I had a love of these things and travel, cultivated by radio stints in San Francisco, numerous forays to Europe, and about a year of being in the dining circle of a Chicago restaurant critic, he insisted I could do it. It was Darryl who helped smooth what seemed like a rocky road ahead to me. And a damn steep learning curve–it was a daunting assignment just getting to know who the players were in the Dallas and Texas restaurant biz after several years out of town.
I just learned from Facebook that Darryl Beeson, former cellar master at the Mansion and other Dallas restaurants, passed away today. He was 54. According to Savor Dallas co-founder Vicki-Briley White:
“We just received a phone call with the sad news that Darryl Beeson has passed away. We will update you as soon as Jim speaks with his cousin who left the message for us. Our prayers are with his family.
”Darryl had been in a minor car accident in University Park. The paramedics noticed that he was incoherent and took him to the hospital. He’s been in the hospital for several weeks. His liver and kidneys started failing him and he has been in and out of ICU during this time. The actual cause of death has not been determined.”
Darryl is survived by his two daughters. He was a great guy.
UPDATE: In 2001, Darryl, then cellar master at Voltaire, wrote a piece for D Magazine with a surprise ending. You can read his words here.12 Comments »
Kevin Demaria, the former associate art director of Gourmet, captured the last days at the magazine with this photo essay. (Gourmet to Go?) It makes me want to kiss my keyboard. I still can’t believe Gourmet is gone. Food writing is in transition and it’s getting scary.3 Comments »
I’ve been at my post here at D Magazine for 13 years. Sometime I wonder how many calories I have eaten; other times I wonder how many of those calories were actually worth ingesting. Restaurant reviewers eat more low-to-medium quality food than spectacular meals.
Anywhoo, in the post below, I mentioned Michael Hiller. He used to be a critic at the DMN. Over the years, I’ve seen lots of “critics” come and go. Anyone remember Betty Cook? Suzanne Hough (R.I.P)? Dave Faries? (Oh, he’s still here.) Or Mary Brown Malouf?
Mary was a real biyatch when she wrote dining reviews for the Dallas Observer. When she came to work at D in the late 90s, we became good friends. But Mary ditched D and Dallas and she’s now the Food and Travel editor at Salt Lake City Magazine. I just looked on their site and found a classic Mary Brown Malouf rant. Gosh, I’m all nostalgic. Call me, Bill.14 Comments »
This just in from Jeffrey Jeffrey Yarbrough:
I am deeply saddened to inform you that Jack Sosebee passed away yesterday after a brief illness. As you know Jack served as President of the Texas Restaurant Association in 1980 and was the Texas representative to the NRA Board for nine years beginning in 1986. Funeral arrangements are as follows:
The viewing will be Wednesday, August 12 from 6 to 8 p.m. with services are scheduled for Thursday, August 13 at 2 p.m. at the Sparkman-Hillcrest Funeral Home Chapel, 7405 W. Northwest Highway in Dallas, Texas.
Jack and his wife, Betty, founded the Sosebee Company. Together they built over 31 restaurants in Dallas, including Hamby’s Bar and Grills, Bek’s Charbroilers, the Crystal Terrace Restaurant at the Music Hall.