Dining OutEat DrinkFeatures

DINING OUT

By guruscottyFebruary 26, 2021No Comments

Radar

OPENINGS

Stockyards kicks it up (another) notch with 97 West Kitchen & Bar

Grant Morgan has been busy. Along with the opening of 97 West Kitchen & Bar inside Fort Worth’s Hotel Drover, the executive chef has been working on menus for the lobby bar, special events, future room service — including birthday party packages for families — and more. But the spacious restaurant, which has more than 200 seats, including an outdoor chef’s table, is the culinary showcase for Morgan, his team and the bar staff, all led by food and beverage director Brian Richards. Expect a very approachable menu along with select items for more adventurous eaters. With the Drover’s emphasis on all things Western with a dash of contemporary flair, look for those themes to continue in the dining experience. In the hotel proper, that means the lobby bar with its living-room ambiance, a signature of many properties in Marriott’s Autograph Collection. With the restaurant, it begins with a landscaped patio outside the front entrance to 97 West. Inside, reclaimed wood, leather furniture, rustic lighting and an open kitchen set the scene. Sparkling chandeliers add a bit of glam to the private dining rooms, which face the back porch of 97 West. From there, you get a great view of The Backyard, a tree-lined space where you’ll find the pool, fire pits, a live entertainment stage and more. Guests also can sit at the restaurant’s spacious bar, which divides the dining room. Look for custom touches such as etched stemware, along with vases by Fort Worth potter Kendall Davis, whose serving pieces and plates also are used at the chef’s tables. And yes, it’s family-friendly. Don’t miss the pint-sized hand-painted tables and chairs designed for the little ones.

200 Mule Alley Drive, Fort Worth, 817-420-6014, hoteldrover.com

Above, a chef’s table sits across from the open kitchen in the main dining room. Among the shareable dishes is a charcuterie board with everything from thin slices of prickly pear-cured pork tenderloin to housemade pimento cheese. Below, Beef tenderloin tartare topped with fried capers, pink peppercorns and a quail egg is served with Creole mustard sauce and slices of toasted bread. Photos by Ralph Lauer

Sushi Sakana: There’s a lot to love

A welcome addition to the Southlake dining scene, there’s a lot to recommend here, from the agedashi tofu to the chirashi don. Our bowl of udon noodles with seafood and tempura vegetables on the side was perfect on a cool day. We splurged on dessert — cheesecake topped with mango — and were rewarded with a pretty and not-too-sweet ending to a fine meal. The sushi menu is extensive, as is the appetizer list, which includes dumplings, crispy calamari and Japanese fried chicken. Takeout and in-house dining are available.

2175 Southlake Blvd., 817-329-1686, sushisakanatx.com/southlake

Udon noodles with a side of shrimp and vegetable tempura. Photo by Meda Kessler

IN THE WORKS

Revolver Taco Lounge returns to Fort Worth

Regino (Gino) Rojas looks to late spring for bringing Revolver Taco Lounge back to Fort Worth as he takes over the vacated Taco Diner spot in Sundance Square. Members of the Bass family, who oversee the downtown development, are big Revolver fans and featured RTL at a New Year’s Eve pop-up in 2019. Rojas will introduce the two-part concept that makes his Deep Ellum location such a hit in Dallas. Revolver Taco Lounge, which made its 2011 debut in Fort Worth on West 7th Street before moving in 2016 to Forest Park Boulevard, occupies half of the restaurant. That’s where you can enjoy carnitas and mole, along with delicate corn tortilla tacos stuffed with delicacies such as duck breast, lobster, trout, octopus, squash and chorizo made with wagyu beef and pork. In the other half, find Purepecha. This concept began with Revolver’s relocation to Dallas in 2017 and won Rojas a James Beard Award semifinalist spot on the list of bests chefs in 2018, 2019 and 2020. Rojas and up to 10 family members prepare a prix fixe tasting menu in a more upscale setting. Watch for a possible May opening.

Sundance Square, 156 W. 4th St., Fort Worth, revolvertacolounge.com

Dallas

OPENINGS

Jeni’s opens a scoop shop in Deep Ellum, the first in North Texas. Photo courtesy of Jeni’s Splendid Ice Creams

Jeni’s goes brick-and-mortar

Already one of America’s most acclaimed ice cream brands, Jeni’s Splendid Ice Creams has opened a 2,400-square-foot scoop shop in Deep Ellum. The store is the Columbus, Ohio-based company’s first in the Fort Worth-Dallas area. Though pints of Jeni’s have been sold at a handful of local stores, including Central Market and Whole Foods Market, the Dallas shop will offer a much broader selection of rotating flavors such as Brown Butter Almond Brittle, Brambleberry Crisp and Goat Cheese with Red Cherries. The ice creamery also embraces dairy-free and vegan options such as a fully caffeinated Cold Brew with Coconut Cream, and a jumble of chocolate cake, bittersweet fudge and cocoa called Texas Sheet Cake. Jeni’s has steadily expanded its footprint far from Ohio and now boasts scoop shops in Austin, Houston, Nashville, Chicago, Atlanta, Charleston, Los Angeles, St. Louis and Charlotte.

2649 Main St., Dallas, 469-317-7126, jenis.com

Newcomer Buttercup, inside Legacy Hall, offers items such as hand-battered chicken tenders tossed with salty caramel and pretzels. Photo by Michael Hiller

Legacy Hall adds new tenants

Plano’s enormous food hall and brewery, Legacy Hall, has introduced a slew of new food options. Its list of nearly two dozen vendors now includes Buttercup, which serves crispy tenders that are topped, tossed or sauced, then served in a cup or savory waffle cone for on-the-go eating; Leila Bakery, a
purveyor of from-scratch kolaches, cakes and quiches; and The Italian Job, a pizza-and-pasta specialist that serves a wide variety of family favorites such as spaghetti Bolognese, lasagna and crusty New York-style pizzas by the slice. Dine-in and online ordering are available, as are takeout and delivery; check the website for hours.

7800 Windrose Ave., Plano, 972-846-4255, legacyfoodhall.com

IN THE WORKS

Stockyards kicks it up (another) notch with 97 West Kitchen & Bar

Grant Morgan has been busy. Along with the opening of 97 West Kitchen & Bar inside Fort Worth’s Hotel Drover, the executive chef has been working on menus for the lobby bar, special events, future room service — including birthday party packages for families — and more. But the spacious restaurant, which has more than 200 seats, including an outdoor chef’s table, is the culinary showcase for Morgan, his team and the bar staff, all led by food and beverage director Brian Richards. Expect a very approachable menu along with select items for more adventurous eaters. With the Drover’s emphasis on all things Western with a dash of contemporary flair, look for those themes to continue in the dining experience. In the hotel proper, that means the lobby bar with its living-room ambiance, a signature of many properties in Marriott’s Autograph Collection. With the restaurant, it begins with a landscaped patio outside the front entrance to 97 West. Inside, reclaimed wood, leather furniture, rustic lighting and an open kitchen set the scene. Sparkling chandeliers add a bit of glam to the private dining rooms, which face the back porch of 97 West. From there, you get a great view of The Backyard, a tree-lined space where you’ll find the pool, fire pits, a live entertainment stage and more. Guests also can sit at the restaurant’s spacious bar, which divides the dining room. Look for custom touches such as etched stemware, along with vases by Fort Worth potter Kendall Davis, whose serving pieces and plates also are used at the chef’s tables. And yes, it’s family-friendly. Don’t miss the pint-sized hand-painted tables and chairs designed for the little ones.

200 Mule Alley Drive, Fort Worth, 817-420-6014, hoteldrover.com