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Restaurant News for July

Posted Wednesday, Jul. 03, 2013  comments  Print Reprints
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Sexytini Serves 1 1 1/2 ounces raspberry vodka 1 ounce cranberry juice 1 ounce pineapple juice Juice from one lime wedge Splash of champagne Edible orchid for garnish Combine vodka, cranberry, pineapple and lime juices in an ice-filled cocktail shaker and shake vigorously. Strain into a martini glass, top with champagne and garnish with an orchid.
Coriander Dusted Mahi-Mahi with Charred Vegetables and Cilantro Mashed Potatoes Makes 4 servings Cilantro Mashed Potatoes: 2 pounds Idaho Russet potatoes, peeled and cut into 2-inch pieces 1 jalapeño pepper, seeded and chopped 1 bunch fresh cilantro, chopped 1/2 cup heavy cream, half-and-half or milk Salt and pepper to taste 3 tablespoons unsalted butter 1. Place potatoes in a medium pot with water, season with salt and cook until tender. 2. In a small saucepan add jalapeño, cilantro and heavy cream. Season with salt and pepper and bring to a simmer. 3. Pour cream mixture into a blender and blend until smooth. 4. Mash cooked potatoes and add in the cream mixture and butter. Mix until thoroughly combined. Keep warm in a 200-degree oven until ready to serve. Charred Vegetables: 1 red bell pepper, julienned 1 small yellow squash, seeded and sliced thin 1/2 bunch asparagus, bottoms removed and cut into 1-inch pieces 1 small shallot, minced Drizzle of olive oil Salt and pepper to taste 1. Set oven temperature to highest heat. 2. Place vegetables in a bowl along with shallot, drizzle with olive oil, and season with salt and pepper. Toss to evenly coat. 3. Place vegetables on a baking sheet and cook in oven until just tender and the tips start to char. Keep warm in a 200-degree oven until ready to serve. 4. You may also char vegetables on an outdoor grill using a vegetable pan designed for the grill. Coriander Dusted Mahi-Mahi: 4 fillets mahi-mahi, 4 ounces each, cleaned of bloodline Salt and pepper to taste 1 tablespoon coriander seeds, toasted and freshly ground (may use pre-ground coriander) 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil 1. Heat skillet over high heat. 2. Season mahi-mahi fillets with salt and pepper and coriander on both sides. 3. Heat olive oil in pan. Sear fish, cooking the fillets about 2 to 3 minutes on each side. Mango Sauce: 1 tablespoon unsalted butter 1 small shallot, minced 1/2 cup mango, diced small (other tropical fruit can be substituted) 1/4 cup dry white wine 2 cups fish fume or fish stock (chicken or vegetable stock may be substituted) 1/4 cup cream Salt and pepper to taste 1. In a saucepan over medium-high heat, add butter and shallot. Let shallot sweat until translucent. 2. Add mango to the pan and cook until it begins to break down. 3. Add white wine and reduce until pan is almost dry. 4. Add the fish stock and bring to a simmer. 5. Add cream and salt and pepper to taste. Cook about one minute more. Blend this sauce in a blender for smoother consistency, if desired. To serve: Place potatoes in the center of a large circular plate. Top with charred veggies, then with fish. Drizzle with mango sauce and garnish with fresh cilantro, if desired.

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FARINA’S GRANBURY VENTURE

Gary Farina, owner of Farina’s Winery & Cafe in Grapevine, says he has always fancied Granbury’s close-knit community vibe. So he has opened a second location of his wine bar and restaurant on the town’s historic downtown square, offering the same wine list, lunch and dinner menu and cozy, antique feel for which the original Farina’s has become known. Visit either location for thin-crust pizzas (which are half-price 4:30-6:30 p.m. weekdays), hearty salads, muffuletta sandwiches and classic baked lasagna. As for the wine, we love to sip Farina’s popular red blend — a tongue-tantalizing combination of cabernet sauvignon, syrah and merlot. Enjoy it for $5 a glass during happy hour. 202 N. Houston St., Granbury, 817-579-5300, www.farinaswinery.com.

STEP RIGHT UP FOR THE BEARDED LADY

Shannon Osbakken admits she has an infatuation with circus sideshow acts. So when the longtime bartender partnered with local real estate pro Eric Clayton to open a new tavern near West Magnolia Avenue, the famed female with facial hair seemed like a suitable mascot for the place. “I just love the area,” Osbakken says. We just love her menu concept: homemade Texas pub fare incorporating craft beer. She and chef Cheryl Westbrook, who has gained food and beverage cred rolling sushi at Piranha Killer Sushi and slinging drinks at 7th Haven, have plans to use local brews in their bar food. Beer-battered cactus will be stuffed with goat cheese and Kalamata olives. Mustard and pretzels will be infused with Martin House Brewing’s new pretzel-based stout, and mussels will be steamed in the local brewery’s Day Break four-grain breakfast beer. Visit The Bearded Lady when it opens later this month, 11 a.m.-2 a.m. daily. 1229 Seventh Ave., Fort Worth.

SHOP LOCAL WITH ARTIZONE.COM

Supporting local growers, butchers, cheesemongers and artisans just got a lot easier thanks to Artizone.com, a Dallas-based online market with free pick-up service that has expanded its services to Fort Worth. Point and click to order locally-grown produce, free-range eggs (about $5 per dozen), handmade pastas (about $8-$10 per pound), fresh breads (about $4-$15 per loaf) and more, then visit Dude, Sweet Chocolate’s Fort Worth outlet Friday evenings to pick up your purchases. The concept has worked in downtown Dallas and now gives Tarrant County residents an easy alternative to sustainable grocery shopping. Orders made online by 10 a.m. Thursday will be ready between 5 and 9 p.m. Friday. Dude, Sweet Chocolate is at 2925 Crockett St., Fort Worth. Order at www.artizone.com.

SO-CAL’S GRAPEVINE LOCALE

So-Cal Tacos is bringing a taste of the beach to Grapevine when the food truck opens its first brick-and-mortar location late this month. Owner Scott Wooley, a Granbury native who worked on the West Coast for more than a decade, says his taco truck built a loyal following as a fresh-tasting, flip flop-style alternative to typical taco diners. “The concept has been established, and it works,” he says, adding that So-Cal’s Grapevine outlet will be just the first of 20 locations that he plans to open across North Texas over the next four years. Plan to visit for tacos and burritos for breakfast, lunch and dinner, including the honey chipotle grilled salmon taco and the panko bread crumb-battered San Diego classic fish taco, along with cocktails from a full bar. As for “Woody,” the So-Cal Tacos food truck, the owner says it will still hit the streets for private events and an occasional public appearance. 2140 Hall Johnson Road, Grapevine, www.eatsocaltacos.com.

MARTIN HOUSE GETS CANNED

A year ago, Cody Martin was riding his bike along the Trinity Trails when he spotted an industrial park that would later become home to his namesake brewery. Now the bearded brewmaster, who has since launched popular weekly brewery tours and supplies a growing list of local restaurants and bars with kegs, has taken his ale to market — Central Market. Martin, along with college buddies and business partners David Wedemeier and Adam Myers, are now selling cans of their most popular craft brews — the four-grain breakfast beer Day Break, brewed with milk and honey, and the hoppy Imperial Texan. Why cans and not glass bottles? The beer gurus say cans offer better protection against light and air, they’re easily recyclable and provide optimum portability for any outdoor adventure. Pick up a four-pack of the 16-ounce cans for your summer excursions at Central Market in Fort Worth and Southlake. 4651 West Freeway, Fort Worth, 817-989-4700; 1425 E. Southlake Blvd., Southlake, 817-310-5600. www.centralmarket.com, martinhousebrewing.com.

BRITISH PUB GRUB IN COLLEYVILLE

Low ceilings, dark wood furnishings and a delightfully dreary setting are everything we want in a British pub, along with true football on TV and plenty of beer on tap. Patrons looking for a feel of London’s pub-filled Fleet Street will find that and more at The Londoner in Colleyville, now open after a year of delays in a former Applebee’s building. The pub and restaurant comes from true Londoner Barry Tate, who has built a loyal fan base with his numerous Dallas locations, including the original Addison outlet that opened in 1995. In addition to the expected fish and chips, shepherd’s pie and sticky toffee pudding, find authentic British favorites like chicken tikka masala, with yogurt marinated chicken and basmati rice, and beef tenderloin and button mushroom pie. A Fort Worth location near Texas Christian University is still in the works. 5150 Colleyville Blvd., Colleyville, www.londonercville.com.

BROWNSTONE’S NEW DIRECTION

The buzz has returned to Brownstone since former Dallas caterer Vince Mack took over as executive chef earlier this year. The Miami native, who has cooked professionally in Houston, Galveston and Tampa, Fla., made a recent appearance on CBS 11 News to share grilling ideas and also won a local burger battle at the National Cowgirl Museum and Hall of Fame in June. Mack plans to revamp the entire Brownstone menu (formerly heavy on the fried “this” and fried “that”) to include more chef-driven dishes with an emphasis on “American favorites,” he says, adding that guests have shown increased interest in his rotating weekly specials. New menu items debuting this month will include coriander dusted mahi mahi (recipe on our website), banh mi sliders, smoked shrimp guacamole, spice-rubbed steaks served with compound butters and the award-winning “Mack Daddy” burger — an 8-ounce patty with pepper jack cheese, jalapeños, blackened candied bacon, smoked aioli and a fried egg. 840 Currie St., Fort Worth, 817-332-1555, www.brownstonefw.com.

RAZ-ING THE BAR IN MANSFIELD

Mansfield will get more Medi cuisine when Raz Mediterranean Cafe opens early this month. Persian chef Hamid Razmjookhah, who has cooked professionally in Arlington and Dallas for more than 20 years, will offer a colorful selection of hummus, including a Texas-inspired jalapeño variety, grilled kebabs, six kinds of saffron rice and vibrant tabbouleh lined with Persian cucumbers. But we keep dreaming about Raz’s dark chocolate cake, which is thickly coated in chopped pistachios, candied pecans and sliced strawberries. Hamid’s wife, Lisa, who’s happy to go by Mrs. Raz, says the cafe will offer healthy food for folks in a hurry. A lunch buffet is planned, and catering services are available. 1071 Country Club Drive, Mansfield.

BRAVO! FOR THIS CUCINA ITALIANA

Although we still miss the Covey Restaurant & Brewery that abruptly closed in Fort Worth’s Trinity Commons in 2010, we’re excited to try Bravo! Cucina Italiana, a southern Italy-inspired “ristorante” that will take over the space late this month. The national chain comes from the same restaurant group that owns and operates Brio Tuscan Grille and touts a live theater of culinary entertainment provided by its large open kitchen, in full view of diners. Expect grilled mahi-mahi over orzo pasta, Mediterranean vegetable salads, bruschetta with fennel sausage, made-to-order pizzas and several gluten-free options. And as swimsuit season is in full swing, we appreciate Bravo!’s entire menu dedicated to dishes with fewer than 550 calories. 3010 S. Hulen St., Fort Worth, www.bravoitalian.com.

PIRANHA’S KILLER RENOVATION

Piranha Killer Sushi has brightened up its formerly dim digs in downtown Fort Worth with an expansive renovation. Gone is the enclosed, bamboo-covered entryway. The bigger space allows more elbow room, a wealth of natural light and a welcome view of bustling Sundance Square. The tall, square sushi bar still anchors the dining room but features new thick wooden counter tops and updated stools. Dark wood-panel features against clean white walls create a crisp, contemporary setting. Rangers fans can catch games on a flat-screen TV over the remodeled bar, where we’ve enjoyed many a great martini. Toast to Piranha’s sleek new setting this summer with the restaurant’s signature Sexytini — a fresh and fizzy blend of juices you can also make at home with the recipe shown here. 335 W. Third St., Fort Worth, 817-348-0200, www.piranhakillersushi.com.

NOTEBOOK

The Lunch Box’s new young owners have revamped the Fort Worth institution’s website, started Sunday service, and now (gasp!) have launched a food truck. Find it most frequently at the Food Park at Thistle Hill and about town at various events. Menu items encompass the best of the Camp Bowie Boulevard mainstay, including a quiche of the day, chocolate and coconut ice box pies, and, of course, the cafe’s celebrated chicken salad, available in a sandwich or by the scoop. 817-738-2181, www.eatthelunchbox.com.

Los Vaqueros has launched home delivery service from its Cockrell Avenue location to the TCU area via its new, bright purple-colored “enchilada mobile.” A la carte enchiladas, flautas, tamales, quesadillas and fajitas are among the items available for delivery 5-9 p.m. Sunday-Thursday. Order by phone at 817-710-8828 or via email at lvinfo

@icloud.com. www.losvaqueros.com/university.

From Across the Pond has closed its Colleyville location and will reopen just two miles away in North Richland Hills, at 8447 Boulevard 26, by early July. Owner Lee Herdman says the new location will allow for more space and patio seating. Herdman and his son have celiac disease, which is a reason he is expanding his restaurant’s gluten-free menu options. 817-428-2332; www.fromacross-pond.com.

Wilfong’s Cajun Shack & Oyster Bar is new in Bluff Dale, the tiny town between Granbury and Stephenville that boasts a winery, saloon, a couple of quaint restaurants and no stoplights. Owner Stephanie Wilfong is a deer-processing butcher who wanted to keep busy in the off-season, so she’s serving up boiled shrimp, oysters on the half shell, boudin, gumbo and rotating weekly specials 6:30-11 p.m. Fridays and noon-11 p.m. Saturdays and Sundays. The restaurant is BYOB and has only outdoor seating. 28595 U.S. 377 N., Bluff Dale, 254-728-3238.

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