Category Archives: Food Event

Pecan Lodge PR Party

Dude.

That shit is great.  I’m not kidding.  The best smoked meat I’ve ever had.  Anywhere.  Any time.

Last night, Hubbard and I were fortunate enough to be invited the Pecan Lodge’s PR party for their new location in Deep Ellum on Main.  You won’t believe it.  It’s a great space.  Lot’s of room, comfortable environment.  Everything is amazing.

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They have a new line waiting for you.  More smokers this time.  Faster line with more meat.  So, you probably won’t have to get there before dawn to queue up.

Let me just say this…

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Hubbard looked at me, “This is the best BBQ I’ve ever had.”  I said, “Yes, it is.  I told you.”  He agreed again that it was the absolute best in all eternity.  Look at that smoke ring.  Damn.

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If it looks good to you at all, it’s ten times better than you’re thinking.  AND they have a big patio space with live music (check their website), a bar, their own brew, serving dinner on Friday and Saturday.  We’ve landed in Pecan Lodge heaven, kids.  I want to take a sleeping bag and spend the night there until they open on May 23.

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Local notables.

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Are you happy yet?  You wait.  You just wait until you go.

 

Goodbye to Club Schmitz

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Last Friday Hubbard, myself and few friends made our way to Club Schmitz to pay our final respects.  It’s not gone yet, but May 31 will be it’s final day since it opened in 1946.  Hubbard and I attended the University of Dallas and this was one of the closest spots to get a cheap beer and decent burger, play a little shuffleboard and shoot some pool.  The place was packed.

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I suspect it will remain packed until it’s final day.  So, if you want to pay your final respects and gobble up one more patty melt with tater tots, you might want to try and get there early on a week day.  Our friend Bo here prefers the “double double”.  You can just guess what that is.  Strangely enough, I didn’t take any pictures of the food.

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It’s the feel of Club Schmitz that we’re going to miss.  The well worn table and time-warp restrooms.  The ripped seats and plastic pitchers of beer.  It’s remembering what it was like to be young and new to beer joints and finding one that you could call your own.  Goodbye Club Schmitz.  We’re going to miss you.

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The sign still says open, but not for long.  Don’t forget to grab a T-shirt.

 

Underground Dinner with Ryan Barnett

You’ve heard of those underground dinners, right?  Pop-up restaurants?  Well, Hub and I were unexpected stand-ins for a good friend of ours who couldn’t make it.  I had always wanted to attend an event like this but never really gotten around to it.  Such fun!

It was held at My Private Chef in Deep Ellum by Chef Ryan Barnett.  There were two communal tables and a four course dinner.  Delicious!  Ryan likes to focus on locally sourced food.  The freshness and purity of the flavors really showed through in each dish.

Our first course was a chilled mussel salad with peach and grapefruit.  A light vinaigrette and the bitterness of the greens perfectly complimented the shellfish and the fruit.  I would have never thought of a mussel salad, but I will from now on.  It was very nice.

Next, a veloute’ of sweet Texas corn topped with a little crab and some thinly sliced green onion.  And sweet it was.  It was delicately, yet fully flavored.  Creamy and smooth, delicious with the little touch of crab.

I wanted to pick up the bowl and drink it.  But, I behaved and used my spoon!

Next on to the fish.  Flounder served with an assortment of local squash.  Very nice.  A squash blossom was a lovely touch, as well.  The flounder was cooked perfectly.

So good.  I love fish.  But, what I don’t usually like at all is lemon desserts.  I am glad that I’m not the type that won’t even try something I have disliked in the past because the lemon tart was fantastic!  Not overpowering.  Tender crust.  It really was excellent.

Chef Ryan will be doing these dinners every two weeks.  We went to the first one on the 3rd.  So check in with him for more info… ChefRB@me.com.  Request to be on the mailing list if you want to be notified of new dinners.  This one was $50 for four courses. It was BYOB with wine service provided.  The service was great.  Conversation was lively and the food…  wonderful!

Like Chef Ryan on Facebook.

http://www.facebook.com/ChefRyanBarnett

Del Frisco’s Grille for Lunch

What’s better than a free brunch at the new Del Frisco’s Grille?  Not much!      Hubbard and I were treated this Saturday and loved every bite.  This is the steakhouse’s answer to a bar and grill.  Very stylish and a great location.  The patios is spacious.  They even have an patio upstairs in their second dining area.  Bonus:  they serve brunch on Saturday and Sunday.  I love that.  I’m always craving something delicious on Saturday afternoons.  I think if you see the pictures you’ll be craving it, too!

I’m a sucker for deviled eggs.  With truffle-chive vinaigrette?  Are you kidding?

Hubbard is still talking about these cheesesteak eggrolls.  They really were delicious.  Tender beef.  Cheesy, crunchy.  Great idea.

I thoroughly enjoyed this Carbonara Flatbread.  Isn’t it lovely?  Prosciutto, Parmesan, cracked black pepper cream sauce.  Kind of like a ham and egg pizza but better.  And we still haven’t gotten to the the entrees yet.

Want a drink?  How about that white Sangria?  So light and refreshing.  Makes you want to drink it all day!  The Bloody Mary comes with a tray of garnishes that you can use to fix up your own glass.  I never got to that because I was actually just interested in tasting the mix.  I hate a dull Bloody Mary and this one was nothing but dull.  Not too spicy, still full of flavor.  Of course, the brunch punch isn’t too bad either.

Bacardi, Malibu, orange and pineapple juices, grenadine… yum!

When I go to a new place for brunch I always try the Benedict.  This one was particularly good.

Sitting atop white cheddar and scallion biscuits, topped with chipotle hollandaise, the eggs were perfectly prepared.  I’m pretty picky about poached eggs.  This was a great entree and very filling.  Hubbard had to try the chicken fried steak.  He makes a mean chicken fried steak here at our house.  So, he can be critical when it comes to CFS.  Not much to complain about when it’s made from ribeye!

The chorizo gravy gave a nice full flavor to the dish.  Hub liked it a lot.  The steak was very tender and not chewy or fatty at all.  And yes, the crust says on the meat when you cut into it!  Delicious fries.

Yes, they are really called Sea Salt and Parmesan Frites.  Call them whatever you want.  They’re really good.  Maybe not as good as the desserts.  But, damn close!

This was my favorite.  Coconut cream pie.  Delicious!

Bread pudding?

Lemon cake?

Oh, come on!  You know you want it!  We’ll be going back for sure!

The Grape for Restaurant Week

I know I’m late.  I should have written sooner.  But, I’ve been thinking about it…

I have always been this huge fan of Restaurant Week.  And I mean it.  Like “fan” as in “fanatic”.  I believe in the good that it does for the North Texas Food Bank and I think it’s a great way to go all out.  Discover new food.  New styles.  New wines and dining rooms.  I’ve always felt liberated by Restaurant Week.  $35 for three courses in some of the best restaurants in town?  What’s wrong with that?

This year, I was unenthusiastic.  I always like to try new places during this time.  I’ve been to most of them on the list now.  Go back to one of last year’s winners maybe?  Then I thought, why not go to one of the places I already love?  I know The Grape is my kind of place.  When I saw their RW menu I decided I couldn’t miss it.  The chef, Brian Luscher, came out to say hi before the meal.  The food was fantastic.  Everyone around us seemed to be having a great time.

Chef explained that he liked Restaurant Week.  It showed.  The menu was loaded with intriguing choices.  The wines were fantastic.  And everyone in the room seemed to be genuinely glad to be there, including the people who were working.  Sound like a typical RW story?  Hell, no.  People bitch like crazy about RW.  Yet, there they are.  Making the reservations and hoping they’ll have a great evening. 

The Grape felt just like it has every time I’ve ever been there.  Because it’s a great place.  Intimate.  Wonderful food.  Amazing happy hour.  Good people.  If you just relax and say yes, you’ll always come back.

Chef’s Picnic at White Rock Photos

You’ll have to forgive me.  My camera lens obviously had a little smear of somthing on it that I didn’t notice.  But, I’ve got to show you the pictures of the Chef’s Picnic at White Rock Lake’s Centennial Celebration this past Sunday.

If you go around back at the Bath House Cultural Center the place is usually locked up.  Not today…  it’s ready for a party!

So many great chefs came together for this event.  Check out this link for the details.  The food was amazing and the open bar wasn’t too bad either.

Look  at these beautiful salads…

 

Add some grilled chicken, sausage, smoked brisket…

A few more sides and you’ve got yourself a damned good lunch!

There won’t be another 100 year celebration at White Rock.  But if you see an event like this again, packed with fantastic local chefs, grab a ticket and go!  It was well worth the price and a terrfic afternoon.

Cinco de Mayo at Work

Who says you can’t have fun at work?  We got the idea for a taco bar this year.  The day started with taquitos for breakfast, thanks to Ox.  When lunch rolled around we luckily, we had Gary, the brisket master, on staff.  Cindy brought pulled chicken.  Becky brought the ground beef.  Corn tortillas, flour tortillas, taco shells and all the taco fixings.

Guacamole, tortilla roll-ups, refried black beans, Spanish rice, queso, tortilla chips of all shapes and sizes along with pico de gallo and two homemade salsas.  It was all delicious!  Laura brought some limeade so that we could at least pretend to have Margaritas.

Cindy is a conservative eater, though I thought she put together a pretty good looking plate.

Josue, on the other hand, is not afraid to pile it on.  This is just one of this plates.  He ate every bite and more.

And you know me…  brisket taco, chicken taco, beans, rice and guac with a little plate of queso and chips on the side.

Just when you think it might be time to put it all away…  a wave of nacho “Supreme” makers come on the scene.  Chips, some meat, queso, peppers, etc.  It was just about all gone by the time we finally gave up.

Did I forget to mention strawberry shortcake?  That, too!  I forgot how fun that squirty whipped cream is.

Sadly, tomorrow is only May 6th.  Oh well… there’s always July 4th!