A gastropub from Austin closes, but a coffee shop with an Australian point of view opens in a new East Dallas residential building. It's the restaurant cycle of life. In other dining dish, there are new winter menus, new lunches, and new brunches.
Here's the latest roundup of Dallas restaurant news:
Haymaker, the Austin gastropub that opened a branch on Lower Greenville in mid-2016, has closed. Unlike other Austin transplants such as Uchi, Torchy's, TacoDeli, Hopdoddy, and Houndstooth Coffee, Haymaker did not find a local audience, despite surefire lures such as parking, a patio, and poutine.
Is it possible that its menu of sandwiches and beer could not overcome the specter lurking over its long-empty space at 1520 Greenville Ave., once a Flying Saucer and, back in the day, the famed Flip's? Or did Haymaker not do the best job on outreach to press and the neighborhood? Either way, it's very sad.
A Facebook post on December 14 made the announcement: "We have given it our all but as of today we will be closing our doors. We are very grateful to have been a part of this community here in Dallas, TX and thank you for the memories."
LDU Coffee, the coffee shop with an Australian point of view — and a curiously amateurish online presence — is now open on the ground floor of the B&F Flats building at the corner of Fitzhugh and Bennett avenues. LDU is from brothers Adam and Mark Lowes, who fit the indie profile the landlords were seeking. They're introducing coffee drinks in the style they would make back home: stronger, less milky, and more in the Italian style than most of the coffee we see here.
Sea Breeze Lobsta & Chowda House, a restaurant celebrating the lobster roll (and mocking the New England accent), is up and running at the Legacy Food Hall in Plano's Legacy West development, along with 20 other restaurants and bars. Sea Breeze is the only eatery on the second floor; the rest are all on the first. The menu features several takes on the lobster roll: the traditional New England lobster roll; a Connecticut lobster roll with shrimp and crab tossed in Louie dressing; and a monthly special roll. Other offerings include shrimp cocktail, peel and eat shrimp, smoked salmon dip, and clam chowder.
Don Chingon, the Lower Greenville restaurant-bar from the Syn Group, has opened at 2237 Greenville Ave., in the former gas station at the corner of Belmont Avenue, across the street from what was previously the original Whole Foods Market. The restaurant aims to redefine Tex-Mex, with dishes such as carne asada fries — french fries topped with carne asada — and taco plates with carne asada, brisket, smoked chicken, and seafood tacos with sea bass and shrimp. Their space is beautifully rendered with Day of the Dead imagery wrought in richly bright colors, and their cocktail lineup includes more than 20 margarita options and 10 frozen drinks.
Meso Maya will open its first Addison location at 5280 Beltline Rd. on January 1, with a menu that includes pollo con mole, cochinita pibíl, carne asada, house-made corn tortillas, and specialty margaritas such as the acclaimed avocado margarita. This will be the seventh Meso Maya in North Texas.
Jalisco Norte, the swanky Mexican restaurant starring chef Jose Meza that recently opened in Dallas' Turtle Creek Village, has debuted its lunch service, running from 11 am-3 pm, with prices ranging from $8 to $12. Menu items include chicken flautas, enchiladas, nachos, and a mixed plate with choice of tacos, tamales, or enchiladas, accompanied by rice and beans. There's tortilla soup and a quartet of salads such as the chalupa Caesar.
Blatt Beer & Table, the gastropub at Preston Hollow Village, has stepped up its lunch game with a new $12 customizable lunch special, served weekdays from 11 am–2 pm. You choose a starter or drink, entrée, and side, from house favorites such as beer cheese soup, blattwurst, or chicken sandwich.
Blatt also unveiled a brunch menu, with smoked salmon cakes, Southern tofu tacos, chicken and waffles, and a twist: cinnamon roll waffles. The Southern tofu tacos are vegan, which would seem to merit a trip on their own. A $5 bubbly bar sounds like a steal; other unique drink options include the Beermosa and the Guinness Bloody Mary.
Pōk the Raw Bar in the West Village has updated its hours: It's now open at 11 am Monday-Friday, giving diners an extra 30 minutes to beat the lunch rush. It also has two intriguing new drinks: The Matcha Sunrise is a blend of ceremonial grade matcha and fresh orange juice. The Golden Matcha is a blend of matcha, almond milk, turmeric, and dates served iced or hot. Totally on board with those two drinks.
Dolce Rivera, the restaurant in the Harwood District, is partnering with Italian truffle hunters for the second year in a row to bring one-of-a-kind specialties featuring the famed white alba truffle. You can get them a la carte or in a four-course dinner paired with white wines for $480. And the dishes are: Wagyu beef carpaccio with shaved white truffle and truffle dressing; tagliolini pasta with egg yolk, clarified butter, and shaved white truffle; risotto with egg yolk and shaved white truffle; and a Wagyu filet sautéed with porcini mushroom, grilled radicchio, and shaved white truffle. The dishes are available through December 23, while truffle season is at its peak.
Bistro 31, Alberto Lombardi's restaurant at Highland Park Village, has debuted a new winter menu. Dishes include oysters Rockefeller; pumpkin cappellacci in a tomato fondue, with butter, sage, pecorino, and truffle oil; whole roasted branzino with fennel salad and garlic-chile broccolini; and Scottish salmon with carrots, sugar snap peas, artichokes, turnips, and Meyer lemon butter. Lounge 31, the bar tucked above Bistro 31, has some new cocktails including a walnut old-fashioned with Rittenhouse Rye Whiskey, walnut liqueur, and vanilla bitters; and a Mediterranean Manhattan with Elijah Craig Whiskey, Carpano Antica Vermouth, Lustau Solera Sherry, Licor 43, chocolate, and vanilla bitters.
Black Walnut Cafe, the Houston-based chain, has four winter dishes it's serving through the end of January: mac and cheese with pork belly; turkey and black bean chili; pot roast with mashed potatoes; and caramel-apple French toast. Five area locations include Allen, Colleyville, Frisco, Flower Mound, and Coppell.
Cane Rosso executive chef and master pizzaiolo Dino Santonicola has officially been named a Trustee by the Vera Pizza Napoletana Americas, the official VPN delegation for the United States. There are only two other Trustees in the United States with this designation. Santonicola will be in charge of the South. Originally from Naples, Santonicola adheres to the strict principles endorsed by the AVPN and serves the most authentic Neapolitan style pizza in the metroplex.