CraveRADIO: Meet Chef John Franke and Bonnie Wilson

cr5by Steven Doyle   photos by Robert Bostick

Another week of craveRADIO and this past Sunday we enjoyed chatting with Chef John Franke from Frontburner, the restaurant group that operates Whiskey Cake, Velvet Taco, Ojos Locos, The Ranch In Las Colinas, Twin Peaks and Red Dog Right. Franke works the menus at each of the concepts along with a staff of chefs from each location.

The good chef brought in some tasty bites from Whiskey Cake including some addictive fire roasted shishito peppers, made simply with lemon and sea salt. He also served up a platter of bbq duck wings that were meatier than your average wing. And of course we shared plates of the namesake Whiskey Cake topped with fresh whipped cream.     


All the dishes at Whiskey Cake are made with local and farm fresh ingredients. Chef Franke talked about his victory garden at Whiskey Cake where they are able to pluck fresh herbs for both the kitchen and the bar.

We also discussed the other concepts run by Frontburner and gave away gift cards from each, including Velvet Taco. I think the radio crew was most impressed with the back door chicken deal you can get each day a Velvet Taco. This is where you bang on the back door and slip one of the employees a twenty. In return you get enough food to feed a family. You get a whole roasted chicken, tortillas, elotes and much more. The best deal is on Monday where you only need to pay ten bucks. You can see why we were excited.

Franke also mentioned that the new Twin Peaks opened up on Mockingbird, and some of us (Kenny) seemed truly happy.


Sometime in October the restaurant group will open a new concept called Mexican Sugar in the old Coast Global Seafood location on Legacy in Plano. This new restaurant will feature Mexican fare and a large portion of Latin cuisine. We will be getting to taste some of the test dishes very soon and will keep you all updated on this exciting news.

John Franke was an incredible guest and you will want to listen to the rebroadcast we list below. But we also had in studio the lead bartender from The Ranch in Las Colinas, Bonnie Wilson. Bonnie has been busy traveling and spreading the good Dallas cheer, and most recently was at Tales of the Cocktail in New Orleans. We reported during the length of that bartender’s convention, and Bonnie’s name came up frequently.



Bonnie made several cocktails for us and discussed trends in the industry, and what we might be looking for from many of the professional bartenders in the area, especially from the bartender’s guild, which is actually part of a national organization that promotes education in the industry.

Bonnie also mentioned that each Saturday her restaurant offers half priced wine. This is a special normal saved for off days such as Tuesdays.  So be sure to stop by The Ranch and say hello to Bonnie and grab a deal on a fine bottle, or just have her mix up one of our favorites such as an Old Fashioned.

Next week will be  a fantastic program, so watch  for details on the show about mid-week. The craveRADIO show airs live each Sunday from 4 to 6pm on 1190am and can also be heard live from anywhere on the planet via

Listen to the show here 


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