January is traditionally a dull, dull month for restaurant news of any kind, but 2013 is already looking to buck that trend. We have new restaurants coming soon, restaurants extending their hours, restaurants introducing brunch, and chefs coming and going.
Battuto Italian Kitchen
KVIL-FM morning duo (and real-life couple) Gene and Julie decided to open their own restaurant after getting laid off last month. It'll be a "red sauce and pasta" place and will open in the old II Brothers restaurant at 18101 Preston Rd. in North Dallas, with an opening date slated for late February.
You can get a peek at some of the menu items on the Facebook page, where the couple has been sharing photos of dishes such as a salad with pears, strawberries and porcini-dusted chicken breast with Gorgonzola; slow-cooked ragu; pasta fagioli soup; and Tuscan bread.
3 Stacks Smoke & Tap House
Frisco gets a barbecue restaurant when 3 Stacks Smoke & Tap House opens in February. It'll be a cafeteria-style sports bar serving baby back ribs, smoked salmon, cucumber salad and berry cobbler. It's located way, way, way up Preston Road, above 121, right next to Hooter's.
The first part of the name points to its three smokers; the second part is a tip-off to the by-now-obligatory wall of taps — 36, to be exact — loaded with local brews such as Deep Ellum Brewery, Lakewood and Peticolas. According to a release, pitmaster Trace Arnold is responsible for designing an 80-foot traveling smoker that can smoke more than 2,000 pounds of meat. Is that something to brag about? The restaurant will be open seven days a week.
This ramen shop is set to open in Deep Ellum in the old Baker's Ribs space in late February. Joey and Chi Le, who also own Wicked Po Boys in Richardson, told Eater that Tanoshi will stay open until 4 am on the weekends and that it'll be vegan-friendly; hopefully, that means a bigger commitment than Wicked's begrudging tofu option. The Les also said they'll make the noodles in-house.
The long-planned fish shack from chef Marc Cassel, formerly of Park, Dragonfly and Green Room, finally arrives, any day now. It's going into the same East Dallas strip center as Good 2 Go Taco and Goodfriend Beer and Burger House, so parking should be fun. The restaurant has a nautical theme, with photos of fishermen and sailing rope hanging from the ceiling. The menu will be seafood-centric, including po' boys, lobster rolls and Cassel's signature PEI mussels spiced up with red chili flakes. There will be no alcohol, though.
The vegetarian restaurant at the Hare Krishna temple in East Dallas is about to reopen after being closed since December 10. Kalachandji's usually closes for a two-week break during the holidays, anyway, but this year they did a remodel, moving the buffet away from the doorway to the opposite side of the room, adding an additional entry and redoing the floors. The restaurant hopes to reopen January 15.
Stampede 66, Stephan Pyles' Texana restaurant, is open for lunch from 11:30 am-2 pm, Monday through Friday, offering an abbreviated menu that includes taco platters.
British Beverage Co. in Uptown Dallas is now doing brunch on weekends, with a mild British flair. For example, the pastry tray of scones, crumpets and Danish comes with clotted cream upon request. BBC also does benedicts, quiche, steak and eggs, chicken and waffles, and Frangelico French toast topped with hazelnut butter.
Fare in the Square, the food truck installation in Thanks-Giving Square downtown, is expanding its hours to include lunch on Fridays, in addition to its current Wednesday-and-Thursday lineup. Participating trucks include Ruthie's Rolling Cafe, Gandolfo's, So Cal Taco, Nammi, The Butcher's Son and Cup Cakin. Gandolfo's will also do breakfast on Wednesday, 8-10 am.
Spoon Bar & Kitchen welcomes new executive pastry chef David Collier, who will unfurl a new dessert menu on February 8. Collier worked with Spoon chef John Tesar at the Rosewood Mansion on Turtle Creek; he'll replace Joseph Baker, who has been consulting since Spoon's opening in November.
Collier was most recently at the Ritz-Carlton, Pentagon City, where he served as pastry chef since 2011. The release says that, "to complement chef Tesar’s seafood-focused menu, desserts will be light and focus on different textures and unexpected combinations of ingredients." Ooooh. Wonder if that means Baker's desserts were heavy and expected?
The Second Floor Bistro-Bar's executive chef Joel Harloff abruptly departed last week. A release quotes chef-owner Scott Gottlich wishing Harloff well with his future endeavors. Gottlich is seeking a replacement, and interested candidates can call 972-450-2978.