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Dallas gets famous cronuts from New York and more restaurant news

Dallas gets famous cronuts from New York and more restaurant news

Dominique Ansel pastry chef cronut
It used to be that you would have to go to NYC to get them. Photo courtesy of Dominique Ansel

This roundup of Dallas restaurant news has it all. It's an action-packed collection of flavorful nuggets including openings, closures, new menus, and dollar deals. Its scope is nearly infinite: from a new bubble tea shop all the way to a national chain's famous fried onion. There's also access for the first time to a pastry from New York that's known around the world.

Here's what's happening in Dallas dining this week:

The Heritage Table in Frisco has closed temporarily due to the pandemic. However, in its wake owner Rich Vana has launched The Impractical Sandwich, a pop-up with gourmet brown bag sandwiches and house-cured deli meats for take-out. This semi-permanent, take-out-only shop will be open Monday-Friday from 11:30 am-1 pm. Menu highlights include bahn mi with Texas Angus beef strip and Chubby Dog Farm pork pate on an Empire Roll, smoked brisket cheesesteak, Wagyu beef bologna sandwich, BLT, and a shrimp & sausage po'boy.

OneZo Texas is a new bubble tea place opening at 4060 SH 121 in Carrollton, staking a claim that it's the freshest boba in DFW. They'll serve house-made boba with natural, fresh ingredients, combined with tea sourced from Taiwan, locally sourced juice, and new Boba flavors developed in-house. They celebrate a grand opening on December 4 with 50 percent off your first beverage.

Coconut Thai Grill in Carrollton has closed due to "landlord issues." The restaurant posted the bad news on Facebook. "After serving you for the past 11 years, we've decided to close down permanently during this difficult times, effective immediately. We've appreciated all of your supports and friendships over the years."

The Poké Point, a poke restaurant in Carrollton, is closing on December 13. "As we count down to our last day together, we want to thank everyone for their continued support!" the restaurant posted on its Facebook page. They'll offer deals galore including "buy 2 get 1 free spam musubis" plus more specials throughout their final two weeks.

Draft Sports Bar & Lounge, a sports bar and restaurant inside the Sheraton Dallas Hotel in downtown Dallas, has reopened, "just in time to continue watching college football games and the Dallas Cowboys," as their post notes. To celebrate the reopening, they're offering complimentary jalapeno cheese nachos from 5-6 pm on Saturdays and Sundays. They also have $1 off draft beer specials on Saturdays and Sundays from 4-6 pm. Oh and also this Friday December 4, when two college football games will air at 7:30 pm and at 8:30 pm. With 1,840 rooms, the Sheraton is the largest hotel in North Texas; it underwent a renovation in November 2019.

Punch Bowl Social has a new brunch menu, served Saturday-Sunday 10 am-3 pm. There are Eggs In Quarantine with smoked bacon and pork sausage bolognese with 2 soft poached eggs; a "cake burger" with burger patties, pancakes, bacon, American cheese, maple syrup served with punch potatoes; and Everything Bagel biscuits with boiled eggs, red pickled onion, cucumber, tomato confit, chive cream cheese and lemon wedges.

Jinya Ramen Bar has new chef's specials for the winter including Spicy Maze-Men, with long-simmered broth, noodles, fresh garlic paste, pepper, nori, bonito flake, onion, kimchee, pork chashu, egg yolk, pork oil, and pork soup. Soft Shell Crab Bun combines soft shell crab, avocado, baby leaf, poke sauce, and spicy mayo. Other new dishes include house salad, salmon & spicy tuna cone, calamari with arugula, crispy rice with spicy tuna, and jalapeño butter corn.

Ida Claire has updated its Southern menu with new dishes that include duck nachos, avocado toast, hot chicken sliders, seafood pasta, fried chicken, bacon burger with pimento cheese, and filet mignon with broccolini and garlic-mashed potatoes. Blistered greens include broccolini, okra, and pickled fresnos. Gulf seafood dip has shrimp, crawfish, spinach, artichoke hearts, and cheese, with spiced potato chips. New brunch dishes include red velvet cakes and sticky toffee buns made with toffee sauce and toasted pecans.

Uchibā is now offering its popular Whisky + Wagyu menu, an in-restaurant only offering on Uchibā’s wildly popular happy hour menu featuring Japanese whiskys and perfectly paired wagyu beef small plates. Currently available during happy hour, to late night, from 9-11 pm, it includes a whisky tasting, cocktails, and wagyu dishes such as crudo, wagyu dumpling, and wagyu buns, available inside with limited seating our out on the patio.

Holy Crust at Trinity Groves is offering $1 slices of pizza every Tuesday in December, all day, with varieties from a selection that includes Pepperoni, Chicken Bacon Alfredo, Mushroom, and Sausage & Vodka Sauce.

It's Just Wings is a virtual, delivery-only brand created by Brinker International featuring three kinds of wings (smoked, fried, and boneless) with a dozen-plus sauces. As a virtual brand, there are no brick and mortar stores and it's available only for delivery via DoorDash. In addition to wings, there are curly fries and fried Oreos. If you spend $10, you can get a fried Oreo for free by entering the code BYE2020, through December 31.

The Cheesecake Factory has brought back Peppermint Bark Cheesecake, featuring white chocolate cheesecake swirled with chunks of chocolate peppermint bark, topped with white chocolate mousse and sprinkled with chopped peppermint, by the slice and as a 10-inch cake. They also have a new ice cream line with cheesecake flavors including chocolate, birthday cake, and salted caramel. For the holidays, they have a Gift Card Offer: For every $25 in gift cards or eGift cards purchased through the end of the year at a Cheesecake Factory restaurant or online, you get a card for a free slice of cheesecake redeemable January 1-March 31, 2021.

North Italia has new and updated pastas, entrées, salads, sandwiches, and cocktails that include: Sicilian Short Rib Ragu with crispy polenta topped with melted fontina cheese and short rib ragu; boneless Branzino with broccolini, cauliflower, Romanesco, cipollini onions and sweet roasted fennel; vegetable salad with radicchio, kale, Brussels sprouts, butternut squash, cauliflower, farro, dates, pecorino cheese, and roasted pistachios; carbonara pasta, a breakfast pasta available for brunch only with cavatelli pasta, pecorino carbonara sauce, English peas, pancetta, chopped croutons, pecorino, and soft-boiled egg.

Taco Cabana has several new holiday menu items. TC Torpedoes are fried corn masa filled with choice of chicken tinga or cheese and poblano, available in a two-pack for $5 as a plate with rice, beans, guacamole, and tortillas for $7. New breakfast tortas inclue chorizo & egg, or cheese & egg, both $3, or bacon, egg & cheese torta for $4. They're available all day, every day. Two new margarita flavors include Candy Cane and Apple Spice.

Beans & Barrel at The Westin Stonebriar is offering festive dishes throughout December including Texas chili with smoked brisket; apple cider smoked tenderloin with cranberry onion marmalade, roasted butternut squash, and wilted winter greens; and bourbon pecan & bacon tart with cinnamon vanilla cream. Cocktails include the Cocoa Milagro with Milagro Tequila, chili, and hot chocolate.

McDonald's has brought back the McRib nationwide for the first time since 2012.

Outback Steakhouse has spun off its signature Bloomin' Onion, first introduced in 1988, with two new menu items that take the onion's proprietary seasoning, crunchy texture, and Bloom sauce in new directions. Aussie ribs are a riff on Royal Bloomin' Ribs using bone-in baby back ribs, seasoned with the Bloom flour, fried, then tossed in barbecue sauce and finished with Bloom sauce. Bloomin' Fried Chicken  is an 8-ounce chicken breast breaded with seasoned flour, fried, and drizzled with Bloom sauce. The Bloom sauce recipe is a secret but it does contain horseradish and hot sauce. 

Dominique Ansel Bakery, New York-based inventor of the cronut, is now shipping cronuts nationwide. No longer will you need to fly to New York or placing a pre-order two weeks in advance. The bakery launched online ordering and is also shipping other iconic treats such as Chocolate Chip Cookie Shots, Kouign Amann, Cannelé de Bordeaux, Chocolate Chunk Cookies, and Double Chocolate Pecan Cookies (gluten-free) to the 48 contiguous U.S. states. They'll also ship two seasonal treats: gourmet Christmas Morning Cereal plus Chestnut & Milk Chocolate Cronuts, the monthly flavor for December 2020. They'll be baked to order and shipped on the same day.

Central Market is hosting a Gingerbread Decorating Contest through December 27. Every store will choose two winners; each winner gets a $500 gift card to the store. Photos of gingerbread creations can be uploaded during this time to www.centralmarket.com/contest. All entries will be reviewed by a panel of judges selected by Central Market and judging will be based on the following criteria: creativity/originality, reflection of theme, and overall execution. For contest rules, click here.

Texas Ale Project has entered a partnership with Andrews Distributing Company to distribute their portfolio of beers.

True Kitchen + Kocktails in downtown Dallas made national news on November 30 when its owner was recorded lecturing diners to stop twerking. He asked a group of diners to stop standing on the furniture and dancing up against the wall, and after they ignored him, he issued his warning. He responded to the uproar with an Instagram post explaining that he'd spoken to the group politely and only resorted to a lecture after he was ignored.