Mid-May is turning out to be prime time for restaurant news. This month, diners in Dallas-Fort Worth are seeing some of the biggest openings of the year — if you like steak and barbecue, that is. But even if you don't, there's news for you too.
Acclaimed barbecue restaurant Pecan Lodge broke in its new location in Deep Ellum with a party for friends on May 15 — including a visit from celebrity chef Marcus Samuelsson. With the party came some big announcements. First, the opening date: May 23. Second, it has a new feature: its own beer on draft, called Boss Lady Rustic Red, made in partnership with Four Corners Brewing Co. You can have a pint there, or take it to go in a Pecan Lodge-branded growler.
Chef John Tesar's steakhouse Knife is now open at Hotel Palomar. Aside from a rib-eye that's aged 240 days, there are more traditional steaks, including filet mignon, as well as sausages, burgers, sandwiches, charcuterie plates, pizzas, salads (including one with pea shoots in a green goddess dressing), and sides such as onion rings and avocado fries.
Chef Stephan Pyles' new pan-Latin restaurant San Salvaje opened spontaneously on May 13, taking over the space that was once Samar. The menu includes black bean soup with squash blossoms; three varieties of tacos, including squid, goat and duck; and two arepas: one with crab and another with cheese. Among the desserts is a dark-chocolate torte made with alfajores, a biscuit-like cookie.
Addison has a new spot with chef-prepared cuisine, vintage cocktails and live music in an upscale atmosphere reminiscent of 1960s Las Vegas. Called Table 13, it comes from restaurateurs Mike McRae and Gabe Nicolella who have more than 70 years of experience in the industry, at places such as Daddy’s Money, e’lan, Nostomo, Rio Room and Studebakers. The menu includes deviled eggs, calamari, bacon-wrapped dates, steak Diane, shrimp scampi, chicken cordon bleu and chateaubriand for two.
The doomed space that was most previously Mi Piaci, which shut down abruptly in April, is now home to another Italian restaurant, Cucina Neighborhood Italian. It has the same phone number as Mi Piaci but a decidedly stepped-down menu, with bruschetta, calamari, spaghetti with shrimp and pizzas.
Steel City Pops, a gourmet popsicle shop from Alabama, opened its first Texas location on Greenville Avenue, in the space previously occupied by Zubar. Flavors include pineapple-jalapeño, cantaloupe, chocolate, buttermilk, avocado and coffee. A second branch will open in Fort Worth's West Seventh District.
Although there are often new branches of Zoës Kitchen opening, few are likely to get the warm welcome that greets the one on 2009 Abrams Pkwy. in Lakewood, where locals are jubilant. It's the 118th location for this company founded in 1995 in Birmingham, Alabama. Signature dishes include chicken kebobs, chicken rollups and hummus, plus gluten-free, vegetarian and vegan options.
Austin-based Pluckers Wing Bar is opening its first location in Fort Worth in July at the Alliance Town Center at 35W and Heritage Trace Parkway. There will be more than 64 HD televisions, including two 110-inch LED video walls. Food includes chicken wings with 19 sauces, burgers, fried pickles, buffalo chicken sandwich, blue cheese club and fried Twinkies.
A branch of Matt's Tex-Mex opened in Colleyville, the fourth location in the area. It'll serve the signature chiles rellenos with raisins and pecans, plus pan-fried chicken-fried steak with gravy. Another Matt's will open this summer in Roanoke.
Avner Samuel's restaurant Nosh Euro Bistro is "temporarily closed," the news of which it broadcast by posting a note on its door. No reopening date has been announced.
Hotel and restaurant Hotel St. Germain will close at the end of May and reopen at the end of September. Chef Chad Martin, who'd been at the hotel for 13 years, recently left.
Blue Mesa is running a "Third Coast" food festival menu at all locations during May and June. The menu includes Gulf seafood in dishes such as crusted oyster tacos and crawfish mini-adobe pie. An accompanying seasonal drink is the peach blueberry margarita.
Twisted Root Burger Co. is celebrating its eighth birthday with a special milkshake called the Birthday Cake shake. It's vanilla ice cream blended with cake and buttercream icing, topped by a piece of cake. It's available through the end of May for $4.99.