Flying Carpet Cafe owner Brent Hyder’s infatuation with Turkish culture began when he studied theology in Turkey.
“I liked the people, the religion, the food and the hospitality,” says the Fort Worth businessman and arts enthusiast. In 2009, he opened a Turkish rug shop in a restored house built in 1909 just off West Magnolia Avenue, but never intended to turn it into a restaurant.
“Sometimes business was slow. Somebody asked, ‘Why don’t we serve coffee and tea?’ Turkey serves the best coffee in the world, and we thought maybe we could make baklava occasionally.”
Digital Access For Only $0.99
For the most comprehensive local coverage, subscribe today.
Turns out the stove-top fire required for boiling Turkish coffee necessitated a full restaurant permit as well as a chimney, grease trap and fire-prevention system. Hyder took advantage of the situation and hired two local chefs to serve not only coffee, but Turkish-inspired cuisine that received rave reviews. But when the original chefs moved on to other endeavors, Hyder decided he would only reopen the restaurant if he found a chef from Turkey.
After a nearly two-year hiatus, the tiny eatery’s doors are open again under the culinary leadership of Jebrail Demirtash, a former ship’s chef with hotel kitchen experience.
Demirtash is serving authentic Turkish dishes, including sucuk izgara, grilled spicy beef sausage served with grilled tomatoes and peppers; shish-kebab, tender cubes of baby lamb marinated with chef’s seasoning; and imam bayildi, whole baby eggplant stuffed with tomatoes, onions and herbs. Desserts include baklava and künefe, shredded phylo dough with soft sweet cheese filling served with warm syrup.
Patrons can bring their own wine and beer, smoke a hookah and still buy rugs from the front of the shop. The cafe is open Tuesday through Sunday for lunch and dinner. 1223 Washington Ave., Fort Worth, 817-877-1223.
Everything Else German
Everything German originated as a retail market five years ago, selling imported German foods, candies, wine and beer before moving locations and morphing into a popular German restaurant. Now owners Alisha and Joerg Bollgen, who run the Hurst business with their six children, have added back the retail component by opening a German grocery store next door to the restaurant. “Our customers missed the souvenirs, the chocolates, and the beer and wine,” says Alisha. “They drink a beer in the restaurant and then can’t find that beer anywhere. So this gives them the opportunity to go next door and buy a six-pack to take home.” Bestselling items include Krombacher Dark, a Schwarzbier-style beer brewed in Germany, as well as sausages, premium coffees and milk chocolates. Scratch-made items from the restaurant are also available in prepackaged to-go dishes, including desserts like apple strudel and cherry-topped Black Forest cake. 660 Grapevine Highway, Hurst, 682-503-7991, www.everythinggerman.org.
Big World of Beer
Tampa, Fla.-based World of Beer, a craft brew tavern offering 50 rotating taps and more than 500 bottles, will open a Fort Worth location this month on the ground floor of Museum Place. The 4,650-square-foot space will feature the franchise’s signature long bar, windowed beer coolers and a 1,000-square-foot outdoor patio. Partnerships with local brewers already have been established, and suds will include Fort Worth’s Panther Island Brewing, Martin House Brewing Co., Revolver Brewing in Granbury and Shannon Brewery Co. in Keller. Tavern fare will include hearty items intended to soak up beer, like giant Bavarian pretzels served with beer cheese, Guinness-infused brat sliders and flat-iron steak frites. Patrons will also be able to infuse their beer with fruit, herbs, coffee and hops via an infusion tower. 3252 W. Seventh St., Fort Worth, www.worldof
Bottled and Brewed
Rahr & Sons Brewing Co. is adding limited-edition four-packs of seasonal brews to its repertoire of craft offerings. Hell’s Half Acre, the series named for the rough and rowdy area of 19th-century Fort Worth, will launch this month with Iron Joe, a small-batch beer that combines Rahr’s award-winning Iron Thistle Scotch ale with Avoca Coffee’s noir cold brew. The dark and creamy concoction is oak barrel-aged for three months. “The coffee itself is less acidic than a typical hot brewed coffee. We brew it overnight and it takes more than 12 hours to brew,” says Avoca co-owner Jimmy Story, who added that it took his team several weeks to brew the more than 500 gallons needed for the limited-edition beer. “That brewing process brings out a natural sweetness in the coffee and leaves a lot of the bitter behind. When you add that to a medium-bodied beer, it doesn’t overwhelm it. It just matches it.” The four-packs are available statewide, and Rahr & Sons will host a tasting at the brewery with commemorative Hell’s Half Acre pint glasses 5-7 p.m. March 4 ($10). 701 Galveston Ave., Fort Worth, 817-810-9266, www.rahrbrewing.com.
Cheers to 10 years of Finn MacCool’s
With inspiration from neighborhood bars in Boston, Robert Holt opened Finn MacCool’s, named for the mythical Irish warrior, in a vacant, 1920s-era structure on the corner of Eighth Avenue and Allen Street in 2005. “It’s been the premier watering hole of the south side ever since,” says the Fort Worth native and former medical professional. Frequented by regulars from the Ryan Place, Mistletoe, Fairmount and Berkeley neighborhoods, the pub — with its original exposed brick walls, floors and tin ceilings — has become a place for folks to sit and socialize without the distraction of bands or karaoke, Holt says. “We’re a neighborhood pub. When you walk in twice, people know who you are. It’s literally a Cheers-type atmosphere,” he added, referring to the Boston-based TV sitcom. Visit March 17 for the bar’s annual St. Patrick’s Day block party, including live music, and corned beef and cabbage sandwiches. 1700 Eighth Ave., Fort Worth, 817-923-2121, www.finnmaccoolspub.com.
Greasy and Great
The demand for a George Palmer’s classic, griddle-top burger in the Oakhurst and Riverside neighborhoods is growing, so he has extended the hours of his Greasy Bend Burgers, named for the historic moniker of the northeast Fort Worth area. Formerly a lunch-only spot, Greasy Bend is now open for early dinner service 4:30-7 p.m. Monday through Saturday. “We extended our hours because the local residents could not make it for lunch,” says Palmer, whose burger technique was inspired by Cleburne burger cafes Morris Neal’s Handy Hamburgers and the Burger Bar. Fresh patties are seared until sizzling and topped with bacon, mushrooms, avocado and grilled onions on a bun that’s toasted on the griddle — a finishing touch that Palmer says is essential for a greasy burger. 2919 Race St., Fort Worth, 817-222-0184, www.greasybendburgers.com.
Supermodel Karlie Kloss loves cookies. Recently the 24-time Vogue cover girl and Fashion Week runway regular teamed up with chef Christina Tosi of New York’s renowned Momofuku Milk Bar to create another flavor for their bestselling Karlie’s Kookies line of wholesome and health-conscious baked goods. The Coco Kookie is a hearty, wheat-free cookie that mixes sweet maple syrup with chunks of pecans and shredded coconut. But there’s an even sweeter ingredient: philanthropy. Every cookie sold benefits the Council of Fashion Designers of America’s “Visiting Designer Program,” which links mentors with student designers. Karlie’s Kookies are sold individually ($3.33) and by the half-dozen ($22) at www.milkbarstore.com.
Savor Dallas, a food and beverage extravaganza 11 years strong, takes place March 19-22 around Dallas. Events include an Arts District Wine Stroll (March 19), Savor the Arboretum (March 20), The Reserve Tasting at the Women’s Museum in Fair Park (March 21), The Grand Tasting at Centennial Hall in Fair Park (March 21) and the Community Brunch at Main Street Garden (March 22). For more information and tickets (starting at $40 for individual events and $325 for a weekend package), visit www.savordallas.com.
Houston Street Bar and Patio in downtown Fort Worth has added a kitchen and is now open for lunch and dinner. Menu items include foot-long flatbread pizzas, ballpark-style hot dogs, sliders and a Mediterranean salad. The kitchen is open 11 a.m.-8 p.m., and the rooftop patio is open for dining. 902 Houston St., Fort Worth, 817-877-4727, www.houstonstbarfw.com.
The Fort Worth Food + Wine Festival chef’s collaborative cooking classes continue at Central Market Fort Worth this month, leading up to the four-day festival. Partnerships include Jennifer Williams of Sera Dining & Wine and Stefon Rishel of Max’s Wine Dive on March 11, and Michael Thomson of Michaels and Jerrett Joslin of the Wild Mushroom Steak House & Lounge. 6:30-8:30 p.m. March 18, $65, 4651 West Freeway, Fort Worth, 817-989-4700, www.centralmarket.com.
The new Wagon Grill in Grapevine (formerly Cliff’s Star Grill) launches Sunday brunch this month featuring Southern dishes like buttermilk fried chicken and Belgian waffles, slow-braised short ribs with root vegetables and several varieties of eggs Benedict. Wagon Grill executive chef Israel Voirin (Vineyard Steakhouse, Baileys Prime Plus) and catering manager Willie Randle (The Zodiac Room at Neiman Marcus Fort Worth) first worked together at Nick & Sam’s Steakhouse in Dallas. The restaurant also serves stone-baked pizzas, burgers with house-baked buns, pastas and salads, and specializes in catering large events. 1900 S. Main St., Grapevine, 682-223-1358, www.wagongrill.com.
Nickels Distilling, makers of TreyMark black-eyed pea vodka, is hosting free monthly Martini Monday vodka and martini tastings inside its Near Southside distillery, located in historic Fire Station No. 5. This month’s tasting will take place 3-5 p.m. March 30. 503 Bryan Ave., Fort Worth, 817-332-0255, www.nickelsdistilling.com
Jakes Burgers has opened a Fossil Creek location in the former Casa Rita’s Mexican Grill. Like the Sundance Square location, breakfast is served daily starting at 7 a.m. 6600 North Freeway, Fort Worth, 817-737-5253, www.jakesuptown.com.
New Cook in the Kitchen
Callie Salls and Lauren Cook, left, met while attending the Culinary School of Fort Worth and both embarked on careers in the food industry upon graduation; Salls became a personal chef and Cook worked in restaurant kitchens. Now Cook has joined Linguine & Dirty Martinis, Salls’ popular, seasonally-inspired catering and personal chef service. The dynamic duo can be hired to cater cocktail parties, showers and small dinners or even host cooking classes. Cook gained hands-on experience cooking at Winslow’s Wine Cafe, Nonna Tata, Magnolia Cheese Co., Bolsa in Dallas and, most recently, Stir Crazy Baked Goods. She’s also volunteered at organic farms and bed-and-breakfasts in Italy to learn authentic Italian cooking and culture. Here, she shares a recipe for Salmon Cakes with Spring Pea Puree and Strawberry Salsa, a colorful, seasonal dish that represents her culinary style. www.linguineanddirtymartinis.com.
Copper River Salmon Cakes with Spring Pea & Avocado Puree and Strawberry Salsa
• 1 pound Copper River salmon fillet
• Olive oil for coating salmon
• Salt and pepper, to taste
• 1/4 cup fresh dill, minced
• 1 tablespoon minced shallots
• 1/4 cup mayonnaise
• 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
• 1 large egg
• Juice and zest from 1 lemon
• A few dashes Tabasco or favorite hot sauce
• 1/4 cup breadcrumbs
1. Heat oven to 400 degrees. Pat the salmon dry and place on a lined sheet pan. Drizzle with olive oil and season with salt and pepper. Roast until just cooked through, about 15 minutes. Let the salmon rest and cool, then flake with a fork.
2. In a large bowl, combine the remaining ingredients, then add salmon and mix until combined. Season to taste. Form into six patties, then chill in refrigerator.
3. Pan sear the patties until golden on each side and finish in oven for 5 minutes. Serve with Spring Pea & Avocado Puree and Strawberry Salsa (recipes follow).
Spring Pea & Avocado Puree
• 1/2 cup fresh spring peas
• 1 ripe avocado
• Juice of 1 lemon
• Olive oil or water for thinning puree, as needed
• Salt and pepper, to taste
• 1/4 cup fresh tarragon, chopped
1. In food processor, combine peas, avocado and lemon juice. Puree until smooth and add olive oil or water to thin out if needed.
2. Season to taste with salt and pepper and finish with tarragon.
• 1/2 cup fresh strawberries, stems removed and diced
• 1 serrano pepper or desired pepper, minced
• 1 tablespoon fresh dill, minced
• 1 tablespoon fresh tarragon, chopped
• 1 tablespoon honey
• Zest of 1 lemon
In a small bowl, combine all ingredients.