Byblos Lebanese Restaurant is the newest restaurant to join Fort Worth’s Blue Zones healthy dining campaign.
“This was right up our alley,” 23-year founder and owner Marios Hedary said.
“Healthy cooking is always what Lebanese food is all about. We use olive oil. We bake our food. We grill our food. This is a way to tell more people.”
Fort Worth is one of a handful of cities nationwide participating in the Tennessee-based Blue Zones Project health promotion, with 15 restaurants now offering special items.
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Byblos’ new menu adds Blue Zones items such as mujaddara (a lentils-and-rice dish), a baked falafel wrap with mint and cilantro, and options for gluten-free pizzas and pita.
Hedary was 12 in 1976 when parents Antoine and Leila Hedary moved their family restaurant from Beit El Kiko, Lebanon, to a now-gone White Settlement Road shop under the neon sign “Lebanese Pizza.”
His family has always made baked falafel, Hedary said.
1964the year women of St. Demetrios church began a bake sale that became the annual Fort Worth Greek Food Festival.
“But we made it for ourselves in the kitchen! Now we’re putting it on the menu for everybody.”
Byblos’ new menu expands the regular menu of entrees such as lemon-garlic chicken, lamb chops or stuffed Cornish game hen, adding new dishes and sides for Texans’ tastes such as jalapeño hummus with chopped beef sirloin and pine nuts.
If you like all-you-can-eat Mediterranean buffets, Byblos’ costs only $7.95 weekdays at lunch and a few dollars more Thursday nights at dinner.
Byblos also offers late-night noshes. The full menu is available until midnight Fridays and Saturdays, and appetizers are served until midnight weeknights and until 2 a.m. weekends.
With the Fort Worth Greek Food Festival coming up this weekend, Hedary said the various Mediterranean styles aren’t that different.
“We always talk about whether Greeks or the Lebanese started baklava,” he said.
“Our spices are a little different. We use more rosewater and less clove. We serve gyros here, and that’s Greek, but they’re popular.”
Byblos is open for lunch weekdays and dinner weeknights and Saturdays, closed Sundays; 1406 N. Main St., 817-625-9667, byblostx.com.
A half-century ago, when the Fort Worth Greek Festival started, it was called the “Grecian Festival of St. Demetrios Church.”
At some point in the 1980s, leaders of the tiny north-side Greek Orthodox church latched onto the idea of a larger public food festival.
This week’s festival is numbered as the 48th annual, but church members actually started a holiday bake sale in 1964. That offering of breads and baklava has expanded to a full plate lunch ($13) served cafeteria-style Friday through Sunday and dinner ($16) Friday and Saturday, with a la carte items available all day.
The festival also serves eight desserts including chocolate baklava, with a chopped-baklava soft-serve available Sunday.
This year’s festival will add cooking demonstrations and the church’s first Greek family cookbook.
The festival is open at lunch and dinner Friday and Saturday, lunch Sunday; 2020 N.W. 21st St., 817-626-5578, fortworthgreekfestival.com.
Morning at Dutch’s
We celebrated Dutch’s Hamburgers’ DFW Burger Battle victory earlier this week, toasting chef-owner Louis Lambert’s victory in the biennial DFW.com burger competition.
This Saturday, Dutch’s will open at 9 a.m. to join the TCU Horned Frogs breakfast battle.
When the Horned Frogs play 11 a.m. games, Dutch’s opens at 9 for pre-game dining. (Restaurants such as Fuzzy’s Taco Shop and Salsa Limón Universidad open daily for breakfast.)
Dutch’s is usually open for lunch and dinner daily; 3009 S. University Drive, 817-927-5522, dutchshamburgers.com.