by Meda Kessler
Save the Dates
Winter Restaurant Week
Support a good cause and local dining establishments when our annual fundraiser, sponsored by Ben E. Keith, returns Jan. 10-28. Proceeds benefit either Tarrant Area Food Bank or GRACE Grapevine, which serves greater Northeast Tarrant County. Restaurants have the option of three levels of participation and choice of charity. Look for more info in our January issue.
Fort Worth Food + Wine Festival
FWFWF returns March 31-April 3, with tickets going on sale Dec. 1. All your favorite events are back, including Burgers, Brews + Blues and Ring of Fire: A Next Level Cookout. Go to fortworthfoodandwinefestival.com to learn more and purchase tickets.
F1 Smokehouse hits the trail
Taking over the barbecue trailer on the Clearfork Trailhead near his Press Cafe, restaurateur Felipe Armenta offers a tight menu of smoked meats, including dishes aimed at appealing to the running/walking/cycling crowd. Thus you get a smoked turkey bowl with quinoa and avocado along with a chopped brisket sandwich piled high with meat, pickled red onions and housemade pickles on a toasted bun. Canned cocktails and beer are on ice next to the trailer, and we’re happy that they serve fresh-brewed ice tea. Hours are being tweaked, but F1 is definitely open early Saturday to coincide with the Clearfork Farmers Market.
The Dusty Biscuit rolls in the dough
It’s been a flour-filled road for TDB, which has gone from selling beignets at pop-ups and a food trailer to a cozy brick-and-mortar on Fort Worth’s bustling South Main Street. Owner Trey Smith was still tweaking the menu and hours in mid-November, but look for a variety of sweet and savory beignets. Go for the powdered-sugar classic or opt for one of their specials, such as the Dusty Cristo Slider with spicy jam. Indoor seating is minimal, but takeout is an option. Follow on social media for updates and special events.
411 S. Main St., Fort Worth, 817-841-9255, facebook.com/thedustybiscuit
Long-awaited V’s House now open with limited menu
Alex Vu’s Pho V Noodle House & Sushi has long had a following in Bedford, and we expect the same for a second restaurant in a strip center near North East Mall. V’s House is pretty, with lots of natural light, greenery and blond woods. While the sushi bar was not open on our first-week visit — staffing is an issue — the abbreviated dinner-only menu of Vietnamese specialities is solid, especially the small crispy crepes called banh khot, chicken pho and grilled pork vermicelli. Follow social media — facebook.com/vshouse.nrh — for updates.
8743 W. Bedford-Euless Road, North Richland Hills, 682-777-3690, vshouse.net
by Michael Hiller
Malai Kitchen adds a fourth to the family
Husband-and-wife chefs Braden and Yasmin Wages have added a fourth Malai Kitchen to showcase their modern Thai and Vietnamese cuisine. As with their other locations (Uptown Dallas, Fort Worth’s Clearfork and Southlake), their new Preston Center restaurant draws on the Wages’ culinary travels through Thailand and Vietnam and includes popular dishes such as massaman curry lamb shank, Vietnamese-style meatballs and crispy wonton “Thai tacos” filled with shrimp, mint, cilantro and Thai basil.
6130 Luther Lane, Dallas, 972-373-4434, malaikitchen.com
Your diet has no chance of success this month, which means a visit to newcomer Sugar Factory American Brasserie should be added to your calendar. Equal parts sweets shop, restaurant and cocktail bar, the Las Vegas-based concept offers a menu that’s sneakily mainstream: hefty burgers, mac and cheese, pan-roasted salmon, and excellent chicken and waffles. But then you spot the fishbowl-size $39 cocktails on the menu, many served in goblets bubbling with dry ice. Instagram-ready desserts arrive as towering milkshakes or ice cream sundaes adorned with brownies, cookies, sprinkles and enough candy baubles to fuel a class of fifth graders pushing a school bus uphill. Need to power a rocket ship? Order Sugar Factory’s $99 King Kong, a 24-scoop ice cream monster covered in chocolate, caramel, strawberry and an avalanche of crushed cookies, gummy bears, candy necklaces, lollipops, sparklers and — oh, why not? — a doughnut. Reservations encouraged.
1900 Cedar Springs Road, Dallas, 469-382-5737, sugarfactory.com
Fireside Pies: New season, new menu
Superstar chef Stephan Pyles continues to show off his creativity thanks to his ongoing collaboration with Fireside Pies. Among the recent additions: chicken saltimbocca (prosciutto and fontina draped over roasted chicken breast); Turkish pizza (sumac-seasoned lamb, minced vegetables and labneh tucked inside a folded pizza crust); and beef short rib stroganoff (slow-roasted beef short ribs, sauteed mushrooms and pappardelle pasta). “I’m still just as busy as ever,” says Pyles, “but running a restaurant is now someone else’s responsibility; I get to focus on the fun parts.”
Multiple locations, firesidepies.com
Michael Hiller is a Dallas restaurant and travel correspondent for 360 West.