First Look: Clark Food & Wine Company

DSC05158by Steven Doyle

What happens when you combine a five star chef with one of the funky new spaces on lower Greenville? The child would definitely be called Clark Food and Wine Company, and the chef giving birth would certainly be Randall Warder. Chef Warder has an auspicious resume, working with the Dean Fearing regime at the Rosewood Mansion on Turtle Creek as executive sous chef for nine years, and more recently as chief concept officer at Romano’s Macaroni Grill.

The cuisine at Clark is more tapas-style, but hearty and more giving than any shared menu in the city. In addition to the shared plates, you will find a great selection of flatbreads, artisan sandwiches and smoked meats. This is definitely how we are enjoying our meals these days. It is a far more interesting date to enjoy a smattering of foods, chef-driven cocktails and a well appointed wine and beer menu with friends and family. Continue reading

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Max’s Wine Dive in Fort Worth Introduces New Menu For Fall

IMG_0003by Andrew Chalk

Max’s Wine Dive, the popular restaurant with the slogan “Fried Chicken and Champagne?…Why the Hell Not?!” just revamped their menu for Fall and Crave was at the media event to roll it out. From small plates to large, it looks like a winner.

Go to the section of the menu entitled “Chef Stefon’s Fall Menu” and start with PB&J Wings ($10), chicken wings in Max’s signature batter and slathered with thai peanut sauce and blackberry coulis (a variation on sweet and sour). But take plenty of napkins as this can be a messy dish as well.   Continue reading

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Nicole Gossling Named Exec Sous at Kitchen LTO, Celebrate With Her Oct 25th

nicole3by Steven Doyle

We have followed the young and vivacious chef Nicole Gossling through her many underground dining experiences, and followed her as she made her way across the globe this past year on her worldwide tour tour. Chef Nicole has accepted the permanent Executive Sous Chef position at Kitchen LTO. This is a permanent position, there are no plans for future Supper Club Dinners for the next year. Come celebrate with her this Saturday Oct. 25th, with an incredible nine course tasting menu inspired by Chef Nicole’s travels through Italy.  Continue reading

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Fiesta de la Vida with Stephan Pyles and Lakewood Brewing at Stampede 66

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This Halloween, put the kids to bed, grab your broomstick, and celebrate All Hallows’ Eve with Stampede 66 and Lakewood Brewing Co. at Fiesta de la Vida. As the official kickoff event for North Texas Beer Week, Fiesta de la Vida begins the 10-day local celebration of craft beer.

Admission includes a souvenir glass as well as five beer and food pairings with special, limited release beers. At midnight there will be a cask tapping of Lakewood Brewing Co.’s popular, seasonal Temptress Mole. Stampede 66’s modern ranch house in the heart of Uptown will be transformed into a neighborhood for trick or treating with a twist. Each pairing will be located at a different “house” in the neighborhood along with a dessert room with unlimited candy.   Continue reading

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Selling Texas Wines Outside Texas’ Borders: What Can Texas Wineries Learn From Gruet Winery?

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by Andrew Chalk

Gruet Winery sells almost 130,000 cases of wine a year, the best of it made from New Mexico grapes and clearly labelled as such. Its retail and on-premise (restaurant and club) reach extends to 49 states in the U.S., plus Japan and the Caribbean. Gruet is sui generis in this respect. No other winery from New Mexico has a footprint outside of the state.

Texas wineries are at an inflexion point in the industry’s history. They are quality-competitive with like-for-like varietals from other states, but that fact is not known outside the state. As a result, out-of-state sales are much lower than they could be. Obviously, a good product is not sufficient to sell nationally. Something else is needed.

What lessons does Gruet’s success have for Texas wineries in expanding their sales footprint outside the state? What are the key factors that led to Gruet’s success? Was it distribution? If so, does on-premise or off-premise distribution matter more? Is it reviews? If so, which review sites matter? How important is editorial coverage in wine blogs? How important are blind tastings? What about word-of-mouth?  Continue reading

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Enjoy A Plethora Of Our Favorite Sandwiches In Dallas

by Steven Doyle

There is little to make a sandwich wonderful other than  fantastic bread, well thought out seasonings and spreads, and a filling that should be unsurpassed. When deciding a list of our favorites, it seemed a more daunting task than originally thought. So many more came to mind as the list was settled.

With all the heartache of selecting which can stand alone as the very best, we humbly submit in no particular order sandwiches that we enjoy. Tell us your favorites and we will run out today and sample one. Continue reading

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Sparkling Wine: Anna Gets Her Bubbles On

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by Andrew Chalk

Make a wine in Spain that sparkles like Champagne, use the same winemaking technique, use (pretty much) the same grapes and you have a wine that tastes like Champagne but at half the price. In Spain, Cava is the best known type of wine made like this and we had a couple of bottles from one of the best-known producers come into the office recently. With the help of some sparkling wine fans, I got to taste them. Cava comes from specific areas in the region surrounding Barcelona so, next month, it may cease to be Spanish at Catalans go to vote on independence for Catalonia on November 9th. We will be drinking ‘Cava di Catalunya’.

The Anna de Codorniu Brut, NV (non-vintage), $15 SRP, is made from 70% Chardonnay and 30% Parellada (one of the traditional Spanish varieties). It is light, creamy and lively. It does not have the common almond flavor associated with Cava and might be described as a less complex rendering of a light Champagne such as Perrier-Jouet.   Continue reading

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