Courtesy National Geographic

Austin claims chef Kristen Kish as its own, but the Top Chef winner has always had a global mindset. She first earned her chops in French and Italian cuisine at Boston's acclaimed Menton restaurant, infusing those influences into the menu at Arlo Grey with a pioneering curiosity and adventurous spirit. Now, she's bringing that explorer's mindset to a new National Geographic series, debuting Tuesday, March 21.

Available on Disney+, Restaurants at the End of the World is a docuseries in which Kish travels to off-the-beaten-path pockets of the planet. The four-part series follows Kish as she searches for the secret ingredients – people, places, culture and traditions – within the world’s most remote restaurants in Boquete, Panama; Svalbard, Norway; North Haven Island, Maine; and Paraty, Brazil.

A lucky selection of South by Southwest (SXSW) attendees got a sneak peek of the series on March 14. The event took place inside Arlo Grey at the Line Hotel, where Kish mingled with guests and introduced clips from the series.

"This series is all about shared experiences and trading stories," Kish said, introducing the evening's menu. "So, when putting this menu together, I realized there are a lot of similarities. When I think back to all the places I went and new things I learned, there are so many familiar flavors to every bite that can bring you right back home into your own story."

The menu celebrated each location in the upcoming series, often in the same course: Parker House Rolls (with delicious whipped brown butter) were a nod to her New England episode ("Maine Island Barn Supper,"), paired with a scallop crudo commemoration of her time in Brazil ("Brazil’s Floating Feast,"). Meanwhile, the main course gave guests a glimpse of the great lengths Norwegian fishermen go to when harvesting Arctic char, accompanied by a clip of Kish's adventures with local purveyors in Svalbard, Norway.

The aim of both the dinner and the upcoming series is to showcase the tenacity it takes to run restaurants in such remote places. Each episode follows Kish behind the scenes with local purveyors, farmers, herders, kitchen crew, managers, and head chefs to hear their stories. She invites viewers along with her in the hunt for the best and freshest ingredients, unearthing the culture and heart behind global cuisine and showcasing the balancing act required to bring unique food to the table around the world.

“Food has an unparalleled power to bring us together and teach us about one another and the world around us, and we see that firsthand by going to restaurants in the world’s most remote areas,” says Chef Kish via release. “Filming this series with National Geographic was an adventure of a lifetime that taught me so much about an industry I’ve been steeped in my whole life. I can’t wait for viewers to come along on the journey with us and experience these dishes at restaurants most never even knew existed.”

The first episode of Restaurants around the World will be available on March 21 at 9 pm.

Kristen Kish

Courtesy National Geographic

Top Chef winner Kristen Kish has a new National Geographic show debuting on March 21.

Mike Stites

These 10 chefs are the rising stars of Dallas' 2023 dining scene

Awards News

Awards season has arrived with the 2023 CultureMap Tastemaker Awards, our annual event honoring the best in local food and drink. It's the premiere food celebration, combining nods to top chefs and restaurants with a tasting party featuring sips and bites.

Over the next few weeks, we'll spotlight nominees in all categories of food and beverage, from best bartenders to the best restaurant in Dallas-Fort Worth.

We'll honor them at a celebratory party on May 4 from 7-10 pm at The Fashion Industry Gallery, with tastings and an announcement of the winners, voted on by a panel of their food & beverage peers, and emceed by F&B pro Jason Roach. Tickets to the event are already on sale, for $60 to $125 (for VIP), and can be purchased here.

While we count down to the big party, we'll get to know the nominees in an editorial series leading up to the event.

Our first installment profiles the category of Rising Star Chefs. These are the up-and-comers, the chefs who are newly established in their own kitchens or restaurants, or who've made local waves for their food.

Meet the nominees for Rising Star Chef of the Year:

Anthony Hsia - Ellie's
Executive chef at fine-dining restaurant at Hall Arts Hotel
Hsia says he began his culinary career "by accident," when he was dining at a friend's restaurant in Germany and jumped into the kitchen after a chef walked out. Before joining Ellie's as executive chef, he helped open the W Taipei, a luxury hotel in Taiwan, and has worked at The Fairmont in San Jose and Singapore, the Ritz Carlton Lake Tahoe, and in the Catering Division for Google Headquarters.

Corrin Ellis - Tango Room
Executive chef at Design District steakhouse from Tim Headington
California native attended Xavier University of Louisiana in pre-med before switching to the food & beverage industry, working for the SBE Hospitality group of Beverly HIlls at concepts such as Cleo, a Mediterranean restaurant at the Redbury Hotel in Hollywood. After cooking at The Henry in West Hollywood, she got transferred to do the same for its sibling in Uptown Dallas. She's also punched the clock for Unco (HG Sply Co.) and for the Yardbird Group.

JP Mancha - Poco Fiasco
Executive chef at Italian restaurant from Harwood Hospitality Group
Mancha trained at Cordon Bleu and has worked with acclaimed chefs at restaurants such as Bijoux, Small Brewpub, The Cedars Social, 18th & Vine BBQ, and CT Provisions. He joined Harwood in December 2021 and has served as executive chef at Saint Ann Restaurant & Bar, helped reopen Dolce Riviera in May 2022, and helped launch this pizza concept, inspired by the great pizzerias of Brooklyn. He's also part of the private events team at Marie Gabrielle Restaurant and Gardens.

Justin Mosley - Meridian
Executive chef at Brazilian restaurant in The Village
Mosley is a lifelong restaurant guy who attended Cordon Bleu and honed his chops at places such as Knife Dallas and FT33, where he first worked with mentor chef and Meridian founder Junior Borges. The two worked together at Mirador, and then Meridian, where Mosley helped revamp the menu into its new fixed-price format, featuring a four-course meal in which diners can select three or four choices in each course for $73, with an optional wine pairing for $40.

Kashawn Cruell - Carbone Vino
Chef de cuisine at Italian restaurant from New York-based Major Food Group
A graduate of CUNY New York City College of Technology Hospitality Administration, this New York transplant has been working with chef Mario Carbone at his Major Food Group organization since he was 17, including The Grill, Carbone, Sadelle's, and The Parm (where he got written up by the New York Times), and now Carbone Vino in Dallas. He also helped his fiancee Paige Muller launch Boxed Bites, a charcuterie gift company.

Mike Matis - Fearing's
Chef de cuisine at renowned Ritz-Carlton Dallas restaurant from chef Dean Fearing
A native of Virginia and graduate of the Culinary Institute of America, Matis worked in the Washington, D.C. restaurant scene before heading overseas to serve as Sous Chef of Conte-Gouts in Lausanne, Switzerland. He also worked at Khong River House in Miami, and was previously executive chef under Chef Stephan Pyles at Stampede 66. At Fearing’s, he launched Fearing’s and Friends, a dinner series bringing in local Dallas chefs for sold-out collaborative dinners.

Mike Stites - Cry Wolf
Chef de cuisine at highly rated East Dallas restaurant from chef/owner Ross Demers
A native of Corpus Christi, Stites gained valuable life experience that included serving in the Army and selling cars before transitioning into the restaurant industry, starting with an externship from Le Cordon Bleu at SER in the Anatole. He's worked in sterling kitchens including Stephan Pyles' Flora Street, Roister in Chicago for Grant Achatz, Wolfgang Puck's Five Sixty, Gemma, and Carte Blanche, before landing at Cry Wolf.

Sophia Schoenstedt - Gemma
Chef de cuisine at acclaimed American bistro on Henderson Avenue
Minnesota native was a prodigy, completing an online program with Auguste Escoffier School of Culinary Arts Certificate of Culinary Arts while still in high school. She earned an associate's degree at Minnesota State University and graduated from the Institute of Culinary Education Culinary Arts before joining Union Square Hospitality Group, working in New York and Hawaii at restaurants such as Maialino Mare and Marta. She's also a Certified Holistic Nutritionist and Health & Wellness coach.

Terance Jenkins - Restaurant Beatrice
Executive chef at Louisiana-inspired restaurant from chef Michelle Carpenter
New Orleans native is a sought-after consultant who started his career making gumbo at the famed Commander's Palace. He was most recently chef/owner of Bon Temps Events in Houston, and has led kitchens at AmberJax, Screen Door, and Cedars Social, as well as tenures at The Mansion on Turtle Creek, Rex’s Seafood, Wolfgang Puck Catering, and Whole Foods, where he oversaw composting and locavore practices, and is a member of El Centro Food and Hospitality Institute’s Hall of Fame.

Tony Ibarra - The Village - Anise
Executive chef at apartment complex restaurant installation
Ibarra grew up in El Paso, attended Arizona Culinary Institute in Scottsdale, and has worked at critical favorites such as Petra and the Beast, FT33, CBD Provisions, Small Brewpub, Proof & Pantry, and Nana.

Photo courtesy of Dallas Arboretum and Botanical Garden

Dallas Arboretum Food and Wine Festival

Dallas Arboretum Food and Wine Festival

The Dallas Arboretum and Botanical Garden’s sixth annual Food & Wine Festival features an evening of the top local chefs serving their dishes served with a selection of wines and beer. Chef Chair Sharon Van Meter of Beckley 1115 has assembled a group of chefs, many of whom are her personal friends.

Featured restaurants/chefs include Asian Mint – Chef Nicky Phinyawatana; Bbbop Seoul Kitchen – Chef Sandra Bussey; Beckley 1115 – Chef Luke Rogers; Café Momentum – Chef Aaron Collins; Cane Rosso – Chef Josh Healy; Grown Market – Chef Lucy Braddock; Loro Asian Smokehouse and Bar – Chef Arturo Hernandez; Mozzarella Company + Empire Baking Company – Paula Lambert and Meaders Ozarow; Saint Rocco’s New York Italian – Chef Jay Valley; Thompson Dallas – Chef Jeramie Robison; Trompo – Chef Luis Olvera; and more.

Kathy Tran

Time to ramble in to new neighborhood restaurant in Dallas' Snider Plaza

Ramble News

A neighborhood restaurant and bar in ritzy Dallas neighborhood Snider Plaza is set to debut: Ramble Room, from restaurateur Jon Alexis (TJ's Seafood, Malibu Poke), is coming to Snider Plaza at 6565 Hillcrest Ave #150, in a former location of The Biscuit Bar, which closed in 2021.

According to a release, Ramble Room will open March 6, starting with dinner seven days a week. Happy hour, lunch, and brunch will follow in the spring.

This is Alexis’ fourth concept and represents a shift away from his reputation for seafood, following his Tex-Mex restaurant Escondido Tex-Mex, which has been ablaze since it opened in November 2022.

That said, Ramble Room does serve seafood along with steaks, chops, sandwiches, and salads.

Starters include warm ricotta dip with truffle honey and toast, Swedish Meatballs with brown gravy, and French onion dip with porcini chips and optional caviar. Much dip.

There are also

  • pastas made inhouse including pappardelle with Bolognese and rigatoni with Italian sausage & kale
  • sandwiches, not just at lunch but also dinner including corned beef Reuben on marble rye and a 7-ounce burger with meat from Custom Meats on Lovers Lane, plus Gruyere and crispy onions on a brioche bun
  • salads include Tomato Burrata with arugula, a wedge, and a Fried Chicken Spinach Salad

Steaks and chops include a 12-oz NY strip Steak Frite, Double-Cut Lamb Chops with chimichurri fingerlings, Panko Fried Bone-In Pork Milanese, and Brick Chicken with broccolini.

Seafood includes tuna tartare with wonton chips, salmon with cheesy grits, and soy-marinated tuna with wasabi mashed potatoes.

The menu was developed by Stan Rodrigues, who is the culinary director and Alexis' partner in his new restaurant group Imperial Fizz. Rodrigues has worked with Danny Meyer's Union Square Hospitality Group, Nick & Sam’s, Frontburner (Sixty Vines, Whiskey Cake), Harwood (St Anne, Te Deseo) and Flavorhook (Neighborhood Services, National Anthem).

Ramble RoomStaircase at Ramble Room seems tailor-made for dramatic moments.Kathy Tran

Cocktails include a martini menu featuring Tito’s On Tap, which comes out at 38 degrees. The wine list ranges from bottles under $50 to big bottle splurges.

Decor includes a horseshoe bar covered in leathered-marble, gas lanterns on craftsman plaster walls, black leather booths and love seats, and a residential-inspired spiral staircase leading to a mezzanine that is available for large parties and private events.

The 4,500 square feet space is two stories with seating for 75 in the main dining room and 50 more on the patio.

The dining room has 20-foot floor-to-ceiling glass windows, noise-dampening acoustical tile, TVs hidden in the bar shelving, an open kitchen, and a pergola-covered patio with string lights, plants, and a fireplace.

J.W. Marriott

Marriott hotel in Dallas' Arts District to open with 3 in-house restaurants

Hotel News

There's foodie news from a new hotel coming to Dallas' Arts District: The JW Marriott Dallas Arts District, scheduled to open in spring 2023, will debut with three dining venues, and an award-winning chef to oversee it all.

The hotel has appointed Jonah Friedmann as Executive Chef for the hotel’s three food and beverage outlets, which are as follows:

  • Margaret's, a three meal farm-to-table restaurant featuring an open kitchen and 30-seat bar
  • Vincent's, an outdoor lounge on the hotel’s 11th floor with views of the Dallas Arts District
  • 800 North, a coffee-to-cocktails concept in the lobby on the street level of North Harwood Street

Friedmann is a native of Chicago who attended both the Culinary Institute of America and Johnson & Wales. He brings more than a decade of experience including tenures at hotels across the U.S. ranging from boutiques to 1,700-room hotels, most recently the Virgin Dallas.

He's been featured on NBC’s Texas Today and, most importantly, was nominated for a CultureMap Tastemaker Awards in 2022 for Rising Star Chef.

It's too early for menu details but Friedmann has a vision, which he shares in a statement.

“My vision for Margaret's menu includes modern takes on Texas favorites with a focus on experience and seasonal ingredients that make Texas cuisine unique,” he says.

He'll also oversee banquet and catering services offered in the hotel’s 10 meeting rooms, which comprise more than 22,200 square feet of flexible event space, with options for catering events large and small.

This will be the first JW Marriott in the city of Dallas. JW Marriott Hotels are the chain's the most select and significant properties.

It's from the Sam Moon Group, and is located across from First United Methodist Church, across from the Dallas Museum of Art, Nasher Sculpture Center, and Crow Museum of Asian Arts. It's going up on top of a parking structure, starting on the 11th floor of the property; the Moons bought air rights, which is totally cool.

It'll have 23 floors, 267 rooms, meeting and conference areas, ballrooms, fitness center, and a mid-air pool and deck with 40-foot ceilings, cabanas, and outdoor event space offering downtown views.

Photo by Rob Wythe

Dallas food and art stars stir up 15th anniversary Soup's On Luncheon

Piping hot

What: 15th annual Stewpot Alliance Soup’s On Luncheon and Art Show

Where: Thompson Dallas

The 411: A chilly last Monday of January was the perfect day for piping hot soup - and the perfect day for Dallas' beloved Soup's On Luncheon and Art Show. The annual Stewpot Alliance fundraiser marked its 15th anniversary this year, and was chaired by artists Christy Coltrin and Brad Oldham.

More than 700 guests filled the hotel ballroom for the sold-out luncheon, a highlight of which was a talk by Cynt Marshall, Dallas Mavericks’ CEO and author of You’ve Been Chosen. She shared how she overcame personal and professional odds to help others see how they are uniquely positioned to thrive.

Brenda Ewing Snitzer, executive director of The Stewpot, underscored the organization's mission to offer a safe haven for homeless and at-risk people, with resources for basic survival and opportunities to start a new life.

Dallas Mavericks’ DJ Poizon Ivy emceed the event and kept the beat lively with special playlist of music inspired by food, meals, and community.

And, of course, there was the main event - the food. Chef Brian C. Luscher, who has served as celebrity chef chair for the past 15 years, recognized each chef who prepared signature soups for the luncheon. They included: Jeff Bekavac of Cane Rosso, Thunderbird, and Zoli’s; J. Chastain of Sister, The Charles, and Carlos Elegante; Kevin Curry, Fit Men Cook; Omar Flores, Muchacho Tex Mex; Danyele McPherson, Purple Collar Kitchen; Janice Provost, Parigi; Anastasia Quiñones Pittman, José; Javier Reyes, The Stewpot; Jeramie Robison, Thompson Dallas; and Abraham Salum, Salum.

In a beautiful crowning touch, Brad Oldham Sculpture created the centerpieces, a limited-edition bronze sculpture that portrays two otters taking care of each other, "demonstrating a manifestation of their compassionate bond and a reminder to care for our neighbors," organizers said.

Proceeds from the "Otter Guides" sculptures, as well as the entire luncheon, benefited The Stewpot which, for 48 years, has served Dallas neighbors experiencing and at risk of homelessness by providing meals, counseling and case management, rapid rehousing, medical and dental services, youth and family stabilization programs, vocational activities, and more.

Who:Rhonda Sargent Chambers, Lynn McBee, Kit Chambers, Cal Findeiss, Meagan Findeiss, Darshell Slaughter, Vater Williams, Gregory Williams, Fernando Gallegos, Amanda Reyes, Allyson Gordon, Janet Evans, Courtney Luscher, Bonnie Mastin, Liz Brantley, Brett Brantley, Tara Glasgow, Shae Barbieux, Randy Herbert, Margie Francis, Ray Francis, and many more.

Soup's On

Photo by Rob Wythe

Rhonda Sargent Chambers, Lynn McBee, Kit Chambers

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CultureMap Emails are Awesome

These are the 6 best food and drink events in Dallas this week

This week in gluttony

Lots of pairing dinners are on the schedule this week, including wine, whiskey, and local craft beer. There’s also an artistic way to enjoy happy hour at a local hotel and a kid’s cake decorating class with a bunny theme (Easter is less than two weeks away; here's help with dining plans). Lastly, make plans to eat a sub sandwich on Wednesday – 100 percent of all sales (not just profits) from a sub chain will go to a charity that fights kids’ cancer.

Tuesday, March 28

Cotarella Wine Dinner at OAK’D
In true Italian style, a four-course barbecue will be paired with Italian wines. The menu includes brisket and cheese cannelloni, smoked chicken parmesan on house-made garlic-tomato pasta, mini Wagyu sausage pizzas, and pear tarts with homemade vanilla ice cream. The dinner is $79, plus a small fee, and will run from 6:45-8:30 pm.

WC Barrel Select Pairing Dinner at Whiskey Cake
The Plano dining destination will share straight pours of barrel select favorite whiskeys during this five-course pairing dinner. The Southern-inspired menu includes smoky jalapeno Wagyu beef jerky, sage and wild mushroom bread pudding, roasted carrot hummus with fried garlic, chicken and dumplings, and pomegranate and hibiscus tart. Reservations are $100, plus tax and gratuity, and dinner begins at 7 pm.

Wednesday, March 29

Day of Giving at Jersey Mike’s Subs
Eat a sub and help a charity. On Wednesday, 100 percent of sales (not just profits) at all 71 DFW Jersey Mike’s Subs locations will be given to Wipe Out Kids’ Cancer. The fundraiser is part of the sub chain’s 13th Annual Month of Giving campaign, which originated in DFW and has raised more than $1.9 million for the charity. Find a list of DFW locations here.

Spring Beer Dinner at White Rock Alehouse & Brewery
The four-course beer pairing dinner will feature flavors of the season. On the menu: crawfish crostinis, spring salad, short ribs served Mexican-style, and fried strawberry shortcake. Each course will be paired with a different White Rock Alehouse beer. Arrive at 6:30 pm for a social beer before being seated for dinner at 7 pm. The cost is $50, plus a small fee.

Thursday, March 30

An Evening with Ebony Lewis at Elm & Good
The Kimpton Pittman Hotel restaurant will host Dallas artist Ebony Lewis for a live painting paired with cocktails. Visit between 6 and 8 pm to watch the artist at work and bid on the piece. Proceeds will benefit the Deep Ellum Community Center Artist Residency Program. While there, sip an Old Fashioned made with Uncle Nearest whiskey. The Kimpton is donating $1 from every Uncle Nearest Old Fashioned sold to support Historically Black Colleges and Universities as part of the Old Fashioned Challenge through March.

Sunday, April 2

Kids in the Kitchen! Bunny Cake Class at Farmers Branch Historical Park
Kids ages 7 to 15 can register for this hands-on cake decorating class to be held inside the Dodson House at the Farmers Branch Historical Park. Participants will learn buttercream techniques and fondant accents and will get to take home their own multi-layer bunny cake. The class is $50 and will run from 1- 3 pm.

Texas Rangers unveil brisket croissant and more snax for '23 baseball season

Stadium Food News

The 2023 season for the Texas Rangers is underway, and so is the new menu at their home base Globe Life Field in Arlington. Are you ready for a brisket croissant?

According to a release, that is but one of the new items rolled out by their food service partner Delaware North, who have also expanded the amenities to include mobile ordering available at all seats.

Let's get to the bullets:

  • Arlington Eats, located near Section 101, is a rotating concept featuring Arlington-based restaurants and they're adding two newcomers for 2023: The Tin Cup and Cartel Taco Bar. They join three from last year: Ella B’s Restaurant, Prince Lebanese Grill, and Sugar Bee Sweets Bakery. Arlington Eats is open for Friday, Saturday, and Sunday games, along with select premium matchups on weekdays.
  • Hurtado Barbecue, previously featured at Arlington Eats in 2022, is now the official barbecue partner at Globe Life Field with a standalone location at Section 141. Featured items include Brisket Elotes, Brisket Nachos, Brisket Sandwiches, and Beef Ribs.
  • 7-Eleven will serve a variety of Slurpee flavors near Sections 101 and 205, along with its new Big Bite Pizza at Sections 133 and 214.
  • Express Grill features Amazon's Just Walk Out technology and Amazon One. Two outlets, located near Sections 108 and 124, have cheeseburgers, hot dogs, bratwurst, sausage, corn dogs, packaged beer, spiked seltzers, soda, bottled water, chips, candies, and sundries.

pizza hot dogIt's all the ingredients of a pizza, on top of a hot dog.Delaware North

New Food Items
New food items include an over-the-top hot dog that's two feet long, a hot dog version of pizza, and a vegan sandwich that's a twist on the ol' BLT.

The list:

  • The Boomstick Burger: A new take on the iconic 2-foot-long hot dog, this variation features a 2-foot Nolan Ryan Beef patty topped with Texas Chili Company Chili, Rico's Nacho Cheese and Jalapenos, and Onion Rings on a brioche bun. Designed to feed up to four. Available at the Texas 24" stand at Section 132 for $34.99.
  • Brisket Croissant: Nolan Ryan beef brisket rolled between layers of croissant dough and baked, then topped with Sweet Baby Ray's donut-style glaze. Available at the Sweet Baby Rays stand at Sections 3, 123, and 230 for $9.99.
  • Corn Ribs: Corn on the cob split into "ribs," tossed with lime crema, and coated with cotija cheese and tajin spice. Available at the concession locations at Sections 3, 121, and 230 for $9.99.
  • Flamin Hot Cheetos Pretzel: A Bavaria-style sourdough pretzel dipped in Flamin Hot Cheetos Cheetle and coated in crushed Flamin Hot Cheetos. Available at the concession locations at Section 3, 12, 121, 208, and 233 for $8.99.
  • Pizza Dawwg: A Texas Chili Company All-Angus Beef hot dog topped with marinara, mozzarella cheese, and pepperoni, then baked. Available at the concession locations at Sections 3, 133, and 214 for $11.99.
  • The PLT Sandwich: A vegan twist on a classic sandwich featuring a balsamic-glazed, grilled portabella mushroom topped with bibb lettuce and tomato. Served on vegan bread with vegan mayo. Available at the Visiting Vegan Stand at Section 101 for $14.99.

Mobile ordering
New for 2023, every seat in Globe Life Field will have access to mobile ordering with delivery via the MLB Ballpark app. Fans can order hot food items, snacks, and beverages through the mobile ordering section of the MLB Ballpark app, and items will be delivered to your seat. Available food and beverage selections may vary by seat location.

"We are continuously evaluating our operations and customer insights to understand how we can add even more variety – including with local partners – and bring new levels of convenience for fans at Globe Life Field,” says Casey Rapp, Delaware North’s general manager at the ballpark. “Between the culinary offerings, bolstered retail selection, and new fan-facing technology, there’s a lot to be excited about for the upcoming Rangers season.”

Busy Dallas hard rock music venue Amplified Live to close this week

Closure News

A Dallas live music venue is shutting down: Amplified Live, which has been one of the city's most popular venues for live rock music shows for the past decade, is closing its doors.

According to a staffer, it'll close down at the end of March, with the final show on March 31, featuring Exciter and Night Cobra.

The venue is closing because the building, at 10261 Technology Blvd., has been sold, and will remain a live music venue but will no longer host rock shows.

As a mid-sized stage with a capacity for 1,200, Amplified Live filled a valuable niche, by hosting major touring acts that were too big for small clubs but not quite big enough for arenas.

It represents a loss to the local live music scene, an increasingly shrinking realm, and did not close for lack of business, with many shows selling out (and some, such as a recent show starring WASP, so packed that it was shut down by fire marshals).

The venue opened in 2021, in the former Gas Monkey Bar & Grill space in Northwest Dallas, which had been there since 2013, following the departure of former co-founder Richard Rawlings. (Rawlings is currently working on opening two new venues, one in the Mercer Boardwalk development and another restaurant, bar, and entertainment destination in Lewisville.)

Armed with a renovated interior, improved audio system, and new menu, Amplified Live picked up where Gas Monkey had left off, hosting metal and heavy bands such as Murder Junkies, Cold, and Suicide Commando -- popular bands for whom live stage options are slim.

It also had unique assets including having an outdoor stage, which became especially valuable during COVID-19, but off the beaten path and therefore not subject to ordinances for sound or having to be done by a certain time.

Many a band commented from the stage over the years that this was the only outdoor venue they'd performed at while on tour, and how much they liked it.

Employees began to hint that change was in the air in mid-March, and some acts such as Cold, who were scheduled to play at the venue on April 25, were informed in mid-March that their shows were being relocated to other venues. In their case, the show was moved to Trees, although other acts will be moved to the Granada.