News You Can Eat

Seafood surfaces everywhere in this volley of Dallas restaurant news

Seafood surfaces everywhere in this volley of Dallas restaurant news

Zoe's Kitchen chicken
Roast chicken with Moroccan spices. Photo courtesy of Zoe's

There are good tidbits and bad in this roundup of Dallas dining news. A neighborhood gets a new chicken restaurant, and a new Italian restaurant opens for lunch. Everyone's serving seafood. But boo, a longtime beer slinger from Colorado leaves the DFW market.

Here's what's happening in Dallas restaurant news:

Gordon Biersch, one of the original gastropubs to open in Dallas-Fort Worth, will be exiting the region on March 4 when its Plano location at the Shops at Legacy closes after 10 years. Gordon Biersch began in Palo Alto, California in 1988 with a kitchen and brewery that did India pale ales, stouts, lagers and more, with tacos, burgers, and flatbreads. A Dallas location closed in fall 2017; according to a staffer, that location wasn't making enough money. The Plano location closed because "the rent was too high and they didn't want to stay."

Golden Chick, known for fried chicken, has opened a location at 1326 North Masters Dr., near the corner of Lake June Road. It's the chain's 184th location, and the third for franchisee Chris Aslam and Rock Strategic Restaurant Group. "I grew up in Dallas and the restaurant business is in my blood," says Aslam in a release. "I am honored to be opening my third Golden Chick location and look forward to serving the community our great tasting chicken." Mark Parmerlee, president and CEO of Golden Chick calls Aslam "a wonderful franchisee."

Recipe Oak Cliff is a juice bar and market at 1831 S Ewing Ave. serving smoothies, vegan, and raw food. It also offers kitchen space rental, cooking classes, and catering.

McKinney Avenue Tavern, a longtime Uptown Dallas bar, has closed. Owner and former DJ Big Al Mack is relocating to Waxahachie where he owns a bar called Big Al's Down the Hatch. "It is so much better to have one location that is making money than to have multiple that are struggling," he said on the bar's Facebook page.

Fireside Pies has been acquired by Golden Tree Restaurants LLC, a Richardson-based restaurant investment group headed by the same Mark Parmerlee who is president/CEO of Golden Chick. There are five locations across Dallas, Fort Worth, Grapevine, and Plano. Henry Leonard has been named the new president and Chris Mitchell is the new COO. Joe Bozarth remains as director of operations; he's been with the brand for more than 10 years. Golden Tree will streamline Fireside's menu and introduce lunch service. The brand also has plans to expand its footprint across the Dallas-Fort Worth metroplex.

Headquartered in Richardson, Golden Tree Restaurants, LLC has ownership in restaurant brands including Golden Chick, Heff's Burgers, JC's Burger House, Jalapeño Tree, and Texadelphia.

Zoe's Kitchen, the healthy Mediterrean-ish chain, has three new dishes. One is a very cool baked falafel. It's traditionally prepared with chickpeas combined with herbs and spices, but instead of frying it, it's baked. That almost merits an exclamation point. It's baked! Zoe's baked falafel has about half the calories of fried. It's also vegan, high-fiber, and gluten-free. And so versatile: You can add it to to any Zoe's salad. You can have it in a pita, with Greek tzatziki, Israeli skhug, Mediterranean relish, cabbage, feta, and fresh dill. You can have it in a Mediterranean bowl. You can have it as a side: Add three baked falafel with Greek tzatziki and fresh dill as a side to any entrée.

Other new dishes are Moroccan citrus roasted chicken, a whole chicken that's seasoned with Mediterranean herbs and spices. It's served with a new side, turmeric rice, which is seasoned with citrus and turmeric, a good antioxidant and anti-inflammatory source. Finally, Sorrentina baked ravioli, with mozzarella, parmesan, ricotta, and spinach, topped with tomato sauce, mozzarella, parmesan, and basil pesto.

Mille Lire, the new Italian restaurant at the Centrum building, is now serving lunch. A few sample dishes include lamb meatballs, cacio e pepe (pasta with cheese and black pepper), fettuccine alla Bolognese, and fritto misto (fried calamari, shrimp, and zucchini with spicy tomato sauce). Pizzas include margherita, and quattro formaggi with gorgonzola, mozzarella, ricotta, and parmesan. There's skirt steak with truffled smashed fingerling potatoes; and cod with charred calamari and sautéed spinach. A quick lunch option gets you two courses — antipasto and pasta — for $21, and is designed to fit the timeframe of a typical lunch break. Which in Italy is two hours.

Zaytinya, the buzzy Mediterranean restaurant in Frisco, has added brunch to its meal lineup, joining the already-established lunch and dinner. The menu features mezze dishes and lunch items such as pastirma menemen, with Turkish soft-scrambled eggs, tomato, sweet pepper, marash, and feta, with thinly sliced Turkish cured beef loin and Kaser cheese. The Ashta features Lebanese-style French toast with bananas and orange blossom honey. Drinks include a bloody Mary with harissa water; Turkish, Lebanese, and Greek wines and spirits; plus specialty Turkish juices and coffee. Hours are Saturday-Sunday 11 am-2:30 pm.

Morton's the Steakhouse is offering a special dish of twin lobster tails for $39, Friday nights through March 31.

The Oceanaire Seafood Room is offering a $69 three-course lobster menu from March 17-24 with lobster bisque or lobster chopped salad; lobster risotto and stuffed lobster tail; and truffled thermidor.

Perry's Steakhouse & Grille may be a steakhouse, but it has six new seafood dishes. Crispy skin red snapper with chive whipped potatoes and truffle vinaigrette is $40. Pan-seared sea bass with creamy corn and red pepper coulis is $45. Crusted ahi tuna with Asian slaw and ginger tomato fondue is $43. Atlantic salmon, served with cauliflower mousse, can be prepared one of three ways: grilled with lemon dill butter, grilled with basil sundried tomato butter, or Moroccan-cured; it's $37. Three locations are in Uptown Dallas, Frisco, and Grapevine.

Gather Kitchen, a healthy fast-casual spot in downtown Dallas, has new items on its recently launched breakfast menu. The "build a waffle" lets you top a Paleo waffle with choice of sweet or savory toppings such as fruits, nuts, chocolate sauce, maple syrup, chicken sausage, scrambled eggs, bacon, roasted potatoes, black beans, avocado, and salsa. Breakfast tacos start at $2.89 and come on house-made Paleo tortillas. Options include bacon & egg, with potatoes and tomatoes; sausage & egg with black beans and bell pepper; and veggie & egg with eggs, potatoes, bell pepper, and caramelized onions.

Snuffer's, the local burger chain with cheddar fries, is doing a mix & match slider special through April 30. You can get slider size of their signature burgers in combinations of two (for $7) or three (for $9). Options include their bacon cheeseburger, bacon guacamole burger, hickory BBQ burger, mushroom swiss burger, classic cheeseburger, and bleu cheese bacon burger.

Pinstack, the bowling-and-dining destination with locations in Plano, Allen, and Las Colinas, has new specials for March created by chef Dan Bevis, including creamy potato & spring onion soup; elotes bruschetta with red chili crostini; and a Philly cheesesteak panini with beef, provolone, caramelized peppers, and zesty onion aioli. So zesty.

Water Grill Dallas has a seasonal item, the spot prawn, a California shrimp that they say is unrivaled by other shrimp, since it the largest found on the West coast and has a sweet yet firm texture. They also say that their live wild Santa Barbara spot prawns are charcoal-grilled, which seems like a painful thing, and served with house-made slaw. They'll be on the menu until October.

Truluck's, the seafood-themed restaurant noted for stone crab, is doing unlimited Florida stone crab on Monday nights for $79. FYI, this is fresh Florida stone crab, offered on a seasonal basis only, and in a sustainable manner — not frozen like those other guys, whomever they may be. Stone crab season is limited: It ends on May 15.

Thirsty Lion Gastropub & Grill, located in the Toyota Music Factory in Irving, has launched a special set of seasonal dishes with a St. Patrick's Irish-inspired theme that'll run through March 18. Items include corned beef mac & cheese, Scotch eggs, a lamb burger, and a Reuben sandwich. An Irish shepherd's pie has seasoned ground beef, onions, carrots, and peas simmered in pan gravy, layered with white cheddar mashed potatoes and melted cheddar cheese, and served with Irish soda bread.

Ida Claire, the Southern-themed restaurant in North Dallas, will begin serving breakfast Monday-Friday, 7-10 am. The menu includes $2 bottomless coffee; sausage biscuit sliders served on three mini buttermilk biscuits; bacon & egg sandwich with tomato, pimento cheese, and black pepper aioli on a sweet potato bun; muffins in rotationg flavors with sorghum maple butter; ham & egg omelet with Benton's country ham, cheddar & American cheese, and tomato chow chow; and breakfast tacos with bacon, lemon herb potatoes, scrambled eggs, and cheddar, and charred okra salsa on flour tortillas.

Knife Dallas has promoted Ben Reynolds to head sommelier, taking over the beverage program at chef John Tesar's acclaimed steakhouse. A 2008 graduate of UNT, Reynolds worked at Suncoast Hotel & Casino in Las Vegas; Maximo Cocina Mexicana in Dallas; and Spoon Bar & Kitchen, Tesar's now-closed seafood place.