An Austin chef has teamed with local restaurateurs to open a chef-driven, farm-to-table restaurant in this historic Norwegian town 80 miles south of Fort Worth.
The new Sinclair Restaurant brings chef Sonya Coté’s hand to a small restaurant in a historic gas station just off Texas 6, midway between Dallas-Fort Worth and Austin.
“We wanted to bring Clifton a destination restaurant, the kind of place where people would stop from all over,” said Curtis W. Callaway, part-owner along with his designer wife, Kaye Robinson Callaway, owner of the one-room Cell Block boutique hotel next door in a former jail.
“We get the Baylor [University] crowd and people from Dallas-Fort Worth passing through. Clifton gets people who pass through and stop, and then they buy ranches here.”
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Coté is known for Austin restaurants Hillside Farmacy (in a former drugstore) and Eden East, located on a working farm.
Her chef de cuisine, Melissa “Zippy” McKenzie, is in Clifton full time, serving $20-$40 dishes such as an herb-butter rib-eye with red-pepper puree, a bone-in pork chop with bourbon-Dijon sauce, snapper with zucchini and roasted corn or a Central Texas-based 44 Farms burger ($14).
The appetizers and sides include Central Texas cheeses and vegetables. Desserts include a jalapeño cheesecake or chipotle-bourbon pecan pie.
A Sunday brunch menu began on Mother’s Day, featuring an herb-butter prime rib, biscuits and wild-boar sausage gravy or Gulf shrimp with local Grist Mill grits.
The brunch continues until 4 p.m. every Sunday, although the menu might change, Callaway said.
Eventually, Sinclair will grow its own vegetables, he said.
(For a fast drive, take Interstate 35W to Hillsboro and turn west across the Whitney Lake dam, or take the Chisholm Trail Parkway to Cleburne and go south through Rio Vista across the Brazos River. But for a prettier drive, take the parkway and then Park Road 21 through Cleburne State Park to Brazos Point and turn south.)
More than beef
Cattlemen’s Steak House — for lunch?
The historic Stockyards steakhouse with the rustic decor has added some weekday lunches that are not straight off the ranch.
For example, the Tuesday lunch special is a blackened salmon or chicken spinach salad with glazed pecans and red peppers ($11.25-$11.50).
More daily specials: fish-and-chips Mondays, pot roast Thursdays ($10.50, try it with the horseradish mashed potatoes) and grilled tilapia in a red-pepper cream sauce Fridays.
Cattlemen’s also has a regular lunch menu of inexpensive steaks ($14-$22), burgers and chicken sandwiches.
Morocco at Mercury
Mercury Chop House, now settled into its new downtown Fort Worth home and coming soon to Arlington, will try a special Wednesday night.
Mercury is offering a Moroccan dinner featuring eggplant-cucumber-carrot salad, braised lamb with dried prunes and almonds, and Moroccan chicken with preserved lemons and olives over couscous.
The “night in Casablanca” dinner is $42, or Mercury will offer its regular menus.
Mercury is open for lunch and dinner daily in the Tower, 525 Taylor St., 817-336-4129, mercuryfw.com. An Arlington location is under construction in the former Cacharel, 2221 E. Lamar Blvd.