Friday, September 25, 2009

Get a "Preview of Savor Dallas" Restaurants at the Slocum Street Style Event in the Dallas Design District October 8

Remember to join us at the Slocum Street Style affair on October 8th for a "Preview of Savor Dallas" as part of their big benefit evening for DIFFA in the Design District. You'll get signature samples from Fedora Restaurant and Lounge, Jorge's, The Grill on the Alley, Go fish Ocean Club, Lavendou Bistro Provencal, The Kitchen Table at the Sheraton Dallas Hotel, and Hibashi Teppan Grill and Sushi Bar (shown left), plus yummy Paciugo gelato. Cleanse your palate with delicious, ice cold San Pellegrino and Acqua Panna Water. Of course, the Slocum Street folks will have some tasty adult libations throughout the place. There are great holiday wreaths you can bid on that benefit DIFFA. You can mix, mingle, nosh and stroll to your heart's content throughout the very hip and fun Dallas Design District.

Considered to be a premier source of antiques and furnishings in the U.S., the 40 showrooms located on Slocum Street are 500,000 square feet of design heaven. By offering a cache of everything from European antiques, oriental rugs, custom furniture, stone furnishings, floral design, and accessories, interior designers can enjoy one-stop shopping.

Complimentary valet parking is available at the entrance to Slocum Street at Hi Line Drive. This event is free and open to the public. Located at 1403 Slocum Street, the DIFFA Wreath Auction will close at 10 p.m. The tasting is from 6 until 9 p.m. Thursday October 8th. We'll see you there

Here's a great wine tasting event coming up at Pappas Bros.

Wine Tasting: Breaking the Code A Sommelier’s Guide to Tasting and Pairing Friday, October 9th, 2009, 6:00 – 8:00 p.m.

Their only seated tasting of the year will offer a guided tour of the theory and process of pairing food with wine. Learn how to think and taste like a pro! Styles from crisp, zingy Sauvignon Blanc to rich, buttery Chardonnay are recommended with seafood, but why? You can taste the answer. Is beef better with an uncomplicated red or a more complex wine? Discover for yourself how a white wine can perfectly complement red meat. Our wine staff will teach you the rules and when to bend them.

$45 per Guest
Plus tax
Reservations Required ~ 214.366.2000

Fans of South African Wines, Vilafonté launches its USA WINE CLUB online

Internationally recognized winemaker Zelma Long (Robert Mondavi, Simi, Vilafonté) is making her world-class wines easier for us to get. I wanted to put the blurb about her new USA Wine Club here for you. Zelma is excited. She writes, "Big news! We launch our USA wine club which adds to our South African, European and UK club which is already operational. We can now ship directly to you from our US warehouse to avoid international shipping charges - and you qualify for a huge 20% discount! It is that simple there is no obligation and no risk."
Click here to order online. Enter code VIPVila to claim your 20% discount.
US shipping laws are complex, click here for all the details.

Have you done this yet? No free lunch, but a damn good FREE DINNER!!!! Smart restaurateur Robert Colombo is inviting you to join him for a complimentary dinner. You must make reservations! Every Monday at Trece or Villa-O, watch Monday Night Football on their large screens while you enjoy a fabulous Two Course Mexican or Italian Meal, compliments of the house. This is their way of saying “Thank You” to their valued guests. How much better can Monday get?

OR VILLA-O AT 214 -780-1880

Just in case you're headed to Napa and will be there October 10th, I wanted to let you know about a great wine dinner at V Wine Cellar on the Vintage Estate in Yountville featuring extra wonderful Paradigm Wines from Heidi Barrett. It will be a four-course meal featuring 2006 Paradigm Merlot, 1999 Paradigm Cabernet Sauvignon, 2005 Paradigm Cab, and 2006 Paradigm Cab Franc. Reservations are $150 per person plus tax and gratuity. And some pretty exciting overnight accommodations are available, including the wine dinner, $699 per couple. For reservations call 800-351-1133. Visit for more details.

Cheers! See you next time.

Sunday, September 20, 2009

Tre Wilcox new executive chef at Loft 610, plus wine dinners galore

Tre is back! Tre Wilcox takes over Loft 610 in Plano as Executive Chef October 6th. This is great news for restaurant fans in general and Chef Tre fans in particular. The popular finalist on "Top Chef" has really made a name for himself because of the TV show and the fact that he is a talented, unassuming, and friendly chef. He has it all going on and headed for even higher horizons. It is great to have him back in the kitchen so we can all go visit him. We had the chance to appear with him a few days ago during a cooking demonstration he was doing at Macy's in the Galleria for their hunger fighting initiative "Come Together". He's really looking forward to the Loft 610 gig and having the chance to see fans more often. Count on him for real food. He's not into "fussy", as his superb pork loin showed us at Macy's. Also, good news for friends and fans of Savor Dallas: Tre confirms he will be back at the International Grand Tasting on Saturday March 6, at the Sheraton Dallas Hotel, wearing his Loft 610 chef whites. Check out the schedule here:

Another of our favorite chefs, Sharon Hage at York Street is doing a great wine pairing dinner with Tablas Creek from Paso Robles on Thursday October 8th. She offer 6 wines and 7 courses for $125 per person, plus tax and gratuity. Call Fana at York Street for reservations, 214-826-0968.

That same night in the very cool Dallas Design District, you'll get a chance to help DIFFA and taste some great food at the "Slocum Street Style" event from 6 until 9 p.m. Get a "Preview of Savor Dallas restaurants" and a signature sample of cuisine from Fedora Restaurant and Lounge, The Grill on the Alley, Go Fish Ocean Club, Hibashi Teppan Grill and Sushi Bar, Jorge's, The Kitchen Table at Sheraton Dallas Hotel, Lavendou, and yummy Paciugo gelato. Tickets available at the Slocum Street event. More details available from our friends at Pegasus News.

Big doings this weekend at Centennial Fine Wine and Spirits. Join us for the Grand Opening festivities at their new Fort Worth store on Saturday from 3 to 5. We will be pouring some delicious wines from Newton, Chandon and Cloudy Bay. Join us and be sure to register for some great prizes to be given away during the tasting. We'll be at Camp Bowie and Bryant Irvin. Look for that handsome hunk of burning love Hummer bedecked in KRLD 1080 artwork. Get details at "The KRLD Dinner Club with Jim White".

Here's a great value for beef lovers (and lamb, chicken, and pork). Rafain continues it's incredible "Dinner for 2" for $60 special. Of course it includes the salad bar and dessert bar, too. You only get this special if you make a reservation and ask for the deal. Rafain Brazilian Steakhouse is located at 10810 N. Dallas Parkway. Call 972-733-1110 or email Enjoy!

Congratulations to two chefs extraordinaire on the grand opening of their new venture Cadot's. Jean Marie-Cadot (formerly Lavendou) and Gaspar Stantic (Gaspar's) are back and knocking it out of the park at their restaurant located at 18111 Preston Road north of Frankford. The two fabulous chefs give French and New American Cuisine a good name. Join them for lunch or dinner Monday through Friday, or dinner Saturday night. Call 972-267-5700 for reservations.

Charlie Palmer at the Joule provides the rundown on their upcoming "Vintage Wine Tastings" series: September 23rd features selections from the Southern Rhone Valley. On September 30th discover the relationship between the "Grower Champagne vs. Negociant". On October 7th enjoy "Sommelier Selections". October 14th features Sangiovese. October 21st offers "Winter Whites". October 28th is all about "Syrah, Sirah, Shiraz". Sounds good. Get more details at Charlie Palmer's website. The restaurant is located in downtown Dallas at 1530 Main Street.

Chef Jon Bonnell has a delicious wine dinner coming up October 1st at his eponymous Fort Worth Restaurant. Get the rundown here:

Bonnell's - Yalumba Wine Dinner Thursday, October 1, 2009

A Word From the Chef...

I am tremendously excited about this wine dinner with the Yalumba Winery. My wife, Melinda, and I first fell in love with the wines from this legendary vineyard on our honeymoon in South Australia in 2001. Our love of Yalumba Wines has shown on our wine list for years; currently our wine list features the widest selection of Yalumba wines in the world!

This special wine dinner will feature a few incredible products from "Down Under" and an eclectic combination of wine, including a very rare opportunity to taste the 2001 "Reserve." I purchased the entire allocation (six cases) of this wine for the state of Texas, so this may be the only opportunity to taste this rare treat. One of the wine makers, Jane Ferrari, is coming all the way from Adelaide to join us on October 1st, so be sure to get reservations early to come and dine with Bonnell's and Australia's oldest family-owned winery.


Chef Jon Bonnell

Bonnell's-Yalumba Wine Dinner October 1, 2009

First Course
Firecracker Texas Shrimp with Sweet Chile Dipping Sauce
Paired with Yalumba Eden Valley Viognier 2006

Second Course
Smoked Baby Back Ribs with Chipotle Barbecue Sauce, Grilled Watermelon and Southwestern Slaw
Paired with Yalumba "MGS" Red Blend 2005

Third Course
Australian Grass-Fed All-Natural Lamb Chop with Roasted Garlic Potato Croquettes
Paired with Yalumba "The Menzies" Cabernet Sauvignon 2004

Fourth Course
Australian Wagyu Beef Top Sirloin with Huitlacoche Grits and Grilled Corn Salsa
Paired with Yalumba "The Reserve" Cabernet Sauvignon/Shiraz Blend 2001

Homemade Mini Ice Cream Sundaes
Paired with Yalumba "Antique Tawny" Museum Reserve Dessert Wine

$120.00 per person
For Reservations Please Call: 817.738.5489

Bonnell's Restaurant
4259 Bryant Irvin Road - Fort Worth, Texas - 817.738.5489

Bon appétit!

Friday, September 11, 2009

Wining and dining updates all around Dallas and Fort Worth

This Week: a Fort Worth wine tasting at the New Centennial, a Stag's Leap Wine Dinner in Dallas, and a tasty salad recipe from Paula Lambert at the Mozzarella Company make this week's installment from Jim White particularly tasty.

The brand-spanking new Centennial Fine Wine and Spirits in Fort Worth has a grand opening on Friday September 25th and Saturday September 26th. Enjoy a tasting of some special wines on Friday including Etoile Rosé, Newton “Red Label” Chard, Newton Claret and Cloudy Bay Sauvignon Blanc. On Saturday, "The KRLD Dinner Club with Jim White" gang will be on hand to taste some great wines, sign you up for the Dinner Club (and to win some great prizes), and to bring you details on the next special event for Dinner Club members. More details on forthcoming on these events. Be sure to check out the "KRLD Dinner Club with Jim White" website for more details upcoming. The new Centennial is located at 6006 Camp Bowie Boulevard, Fort Worth 76116. The store is located at Camp Bowie and Bryant Irvin Road.

Pappas Brothers Steak House has a Stag's Leap Wine Cellars dinner on Friday September 25th featuring four courses paired with some exceptional Stag's Leap selections. Price is $175 per person, plus tax and gratuity. Call 214-366-2000 for reservations.

Avner Samuell's September cooking class at Aurora is happening on Saturday September 26th beginning at 10. the hands-on session includes a four-course lunch and wine with the maestro of the kitchen. Reserve a space for $95 by calling 214-528-9400 or emailing

Celebrating 30 years of fine dining in Fort Worth, Louise Lamensdorf and Bistro Louise have added their most successful "Restaurant Week" sellers to the menu:

Sweet Onion Tart with Red Wine Onions & Apple Smoked Bacon, $8.50
Lobster Newberg Risotto with Mushrooms, Red Bell Peppers, Fennel & Leek, $8.75

Roasted Chicken Provencal En Croute, S21.50
Black Angus Braised Short Rib with Creamy Polenta & Crispy Onion Rings, $23.50
Whaler Soft Shell Crab with Crispy Spinach & Creamy Corn Potato Risotto, $35
Magret of Duck with Baked Grapes, Rose Wine Glaze & French Bleu Tart, $32

And be sure and join Louise for her "Aquitaine Wine Dinner" on Thursday October 1st. See the menu below.

Bordeaux is the largest wine growing region in the world. The mission of Aquitaine Wines is to provide hand-crafted, discovery, VALUE wines from Bordeaux seeking a special partnership suitable to the quaility of their wines.

Four wines, four different regions of Bordeaux and a four-course tasting menu.


First Course:
Chef's Surprise

Second Course:
Bacon, Leek & Lobster Cake with Saffron Beurre Blanc

Third Course:
Double-Cut Colorado Lamb Chop with Bordeaux Daube Sauce

Fourth Course:
Bleu Cheese Souffle Tart with Grilled Fig & Red Wine Syrup

Lara Mancini, of Bordeaux, will narrate.

**Reservations Required $75 per person plus gratuity and tax. Call 817-922-9244.

Here's a great tasting end of summer salad from our favorite lady of taste: Paula Lambert and the Mozzarella Company. Enjoy. And get more great treats from Paula's website:

Chicken Salad with Grapes, Toasted Almonds and Deep Ellum Blue

2 split chicken breast halves, 1 lb total
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1 clove garlic
1/4 cup slivered almonds, about 2 ounces
1/4 cup finely chopped red onion
1/4 cup mayonnaise
1/4 cup sour cream
1 tablespoon fresh minced tarragon
1 1/2 cups (8 oz) halved seedless green grapes
1/4 cup (4 oz) crumbled Deep Ellum Blue
1 head Bibb lettuce

Place chicken breasts in a medium-sized saucepan and cover with cold water. Add the salt, pepper and garlic. Bring to a boil over high heat, and then reduce the heat to low and simmer for 10 minutes. Turn over the breasts and continue to simmer for 10 additional minutes. Remove from the heat and leave the breasts to cool to room temperature in their poaching liquid.

Preheat the oven to 350f. Place the almonds on a small baking sheet and transfer to the oven. Bake for 3 to 5 minutes, until the almonds are golden brown. Remove from the oven to a cake rack to cool.

Remove the breasts from the poaching liquid and cut them into 1/2-inch cubes. Combine the chicken breasts with the onion, mayonnaise, sour cream and tarragon in a large mixing bowl and mix well. Add the grapes and Deep Ellum Blue and stir gently until all ingredients are well coated. Refrigerate for at least 1 hour or longer before serving time.

Gently break off the leaves of the lettuce from the head, wash, spin and pat them dry using a cup towel. Arrange three or four lettuce leaves on each of six individual plates to form bowls to hold the salad. Mound the chicken salad on top of the leaves and sprinkle the almonds on top. Serves 6

Copyright Paula Lambert, 2009, all rights reserved

That's it for this week. Let me know how you liked the recipe or it you are able to attend any of the dinners. Cheers! Jim

Friday, September 4, 2009

Mansion team wins chef/sommelier bragging rights and a cool trip to Napa

Wine Guy Michael Flynn and Chef Eric Brandt from the Rosewood Mansion on Turtle Creek take top honors in "Restaurant Week" Menu Contest.
Jim White has details on some great upcoming foodie events.

It don't mean a thing if ain't got that "sing", and the winning food and wine pairing menu in this year's "KRLD Restaurant Week" competition for chefs and sommeliers has that in abundance--figuratively and literally. The Rosewood Mansion on Turtle Creek was chosen best menu in the 10th Annual Competition sponsored by the Dallas-Fort Worth Chapter of American Institute of Wine and Food. Executive Sous Chef Eric Brandt and Director of Wine and Beverages Michael Flynn conspired to construct the consummate culinary creation, which resulted in the honor bestowed by unnamed but highly regarded judges-- "Each considered a leader in their culinary field", according the the AIWF press release.

The metaphorical "sing", more like an opus in this case, is the beautiful mouth-feel of harmony created by the perfect, or near perfect, wine and food combination that chefs and foodies strive for at all turns. The literal "sing" was an inspired wine choice by Sommelier Flynn to accompany Pan-Seared Trout with Grilled Squash (offered in course two). Palates who chose this option were treated to an under-appreciated Austrian selection: "Singing" Grüner Veltliner, Laurenz V, 2005 Vintage; with "pure, dry, citric lemon/lime flavors set against a savor note of white pepper and watercress.", according to menu tasting notes.

We were lucky enough to get in on the very end of the Mansion's three week Restaurant Week presentation, and can attest to the efficacy of this statement and add our personal kudos to the brain-trust at the Mansion for pushing the envelope with the wine and food pairings. Not one Chardonnay or Cabernet in sight! In a world of wonderful wine options, it's nice to see more of them offered on the restaurant scene. The complete Mansion menu for Restaurant Week is posted below. But first, let me congratulate the runners-up in the contest: Executive Chef Matt McCallister and Wine Director Brian Boomer of Stephan Pyles Restaurant. Described by AIWF as "an imaginative menu of food and wine featuring both familiar and exotic flavors of Texas." Third place was awarded to Hilton/Anatole’s Nana restaurant team of Executive Chef, Anthony Bombaci and Wine Director, Russell Burkett for their "superb" pairings. Again to the press release, "The unique culinary style of Chef Bombaci delivered European flavors with Italian- influenced dishes." Both of these teams received monetary prizes for the wine and food pairing. Wine guy Flynn and chef extraordinaire Brandt get an all-expense paid trip for a week to "The Disneyland" for Foodies: The Culinary Institute of America at Greystone in Napa Valley where they will both utilize a special wine or food scholarship to enhance their professional skills. a votre santé!

Chef Eric Brandt, Jim White, Michael Flynn (L to R)

KRLD Restaurant Week

Wine and Food Pairing Menu 2009

Rosewood Mansion on Turtle Creek

First Course

Frisée and Grilled Texas Peach Salad with Toasted Almonds, Ginger-Mustard Vinaigrette and

Brazos Brie Crouton

*Domaine de Nizas Rosé, Coteaux de Languedoc, 2007 – a perennial on Wine Spectator’s top 100 lists, a dry Grenache with vivid berry fruit and a hint of white pepper on the finish.

Corn-Saffron Soup, Grilled Shrimp, Fresh Herbs and Chile Oil

*Max. Ferdinand Richter Riesling kabinett, Mulheimer Sonenlay, Mosel, 2007 – Just off-dry, with cool flavors of peach and apricot, herbs and slate.

Carpaccio of Venison, Green Tomato Marmalade and Pecorino

*Vietti Barbera d’Asti, “Tre Vigne”, Piemonte, 2006 – The ultimate in versatility with food, this soft, supple, savory red boasts juicy acidity.

Second Course

Braised Short Rib, Tomato-Thyme Compote and Balsamic Glazed Cippolini Onions

*Dow’s Vale do Bomfim, Douro, Portugal, 2006 – from the famous Port shipper, a blend of traditional, noble varieties giving a smoky richness, a hint of oak spice, and subtle minerality to act as a backdrop.

Pan-Seared Trout with Grilled Squash and Barley Salad, Tomato Oil

“Singing” Gruner Veltliner, Laurenz V, Austria, 2005 – Pure, dry, citric lemon/lime flavors set against a savory note of white pepper and watercress.

Marinated Organic Chicken with Corn and Shiitake Succotash

*Feudi di San Gregorio Falanghina, Campania. 2007 – Cool, dry orange peel, honey and herb flavors, on a medium frame with just a hint of earth.


Peanut Butter Torte – Chocolate Ganache, Peanut Feuilletine, Malt Ice Cream

*Senorio de Barahonda, Bellum-El Remate, Monastrell 2001, Yecla, Spain – dried fruit flavors of dates and prunes, toffee, smoke and nutty oak.. Not too sweet.

Chef’s Trio of Ice Creams

*Vietti Moscato d’Asti “La Cascinetta”, Piemonte, 2006 – An ethereal perfume of honeysuckle, jasmine, and rose petals announces this lightly sparkling beauty. Frothy, delicate, and fun!

*Suggested Wine Pairings

Two 6 ounce glasses of wine and one 3 ounce glass of dessert wine $28

or $19 excluding dessert wine

Speaking of Austrian wines: you may know, we are hosting a dinner on September 15th featuring the delightful Hall Wines from Napa Valley at The Place at Perry's in Dallas. The equally delightful Kathryn Hall is our special guest for the dinner. She is the former Ambassador to Austria during the Clinton Administration. Of course, she hosted glittering dinners in Vienna during her tenure. As we were preparing for the dinner and talking with Kathryn about the wines she'll be serving, I couldn't help but inquire about the wines she served during her tenure in Austria. She laughed and said that while she would certainly have liked to introduce the various diplomats and heads of state she entertained to her, and husband Craig Hall's, fabulous Napa Valley selections, she thought this might be a little self-serving. She was the consummate diplomat and always made sure she was showcasing the best Austrian wines at her dinners. As evidenced by the Grüner Veltliner featured in the Mansion menu above, there are some great ones. Try them if you haven't. Maybe we can arrange to have some for you at Savor Dallas.

Certainly, the Halls have been invited to return to the Arts District Wine Stroll on March 5th, The Reserve Tasting and the International Grand Tasting (at the beautifully renovated Sheraton Dallas Hotel in Downtown Dallas) on Saturday March 6th. We hope she is "self serving" and serves us some of her wonderful Kathryn Hall Cabernet Sauvignon (which will be featuring at our Perry's Dinner). More details on Savor Dallas at The early bird prize for wine signups this year goes to Michael David Winery from Lodi and Becker Vineyards from Texas. In all, over 400 varietals will be featured during the Savor Dallas weekend.

Have you heard about the "Chef's Wine Table Series" that they're doing at Dali in One Arts Plaza? This bi-monthly tasting feast happens on selected Sundays. Proprietor Paul Pinnell and Chef Joel Harloff put together a casual evening focused on one particular varietal of wine. There is a maximum seating of ten "special guests" who are encouraged to "bring their best cellar wine that compliments the theme of the evening". Paul assures that this is perfectly above board and legal in case anyone is concerned about the TABC. Of course, everyone shares the booty, and this goes with a four-course ala carte menu. The cost is $60 per person. Check it out for a cool way to wind down the weekend. Call Dali at 469-385-9360, or visit their website,

There may not be a "free" lunch", but apparently there IS a free dinner. At least at Robert Colombo's restaurants. Every Monday at Trece or Villa-O enjoy a 2- Course Mexican or Italian Meal, compliments of the house. Their way of saying thanks to valued guests. You must have a RESERVATION to take advantage of this. PLEASE CALL TRECE AT 214-780-1900 OR VILLA-O AT 214 -780-1880. Savvy restaurateur Colombo says it's been great for business, wine sales are up and the servers are happy. Not to mention the happy customers. Free is good!

Congratulations to Five Sixty by Wolfgang Puck, recently named as one of the winners of the 2009 Diners’ Choice Awards for the nation’s Top 50 Restaurants with a Scenic View by On a clear day you can't quite see "forever", but the revolving birds-eye view of the Texas prairie and downtown Dallas is pretty spectacular.

We love dives, and there's no better "dive" than a good bar. If you haven't been to the Windmill Lounge near Love Field in Dallas, belly up to the bar, stranger. It's Dallas' answer to "Cheers". Only here, Norm sings! Actually, DJ Brad leads the Thursday night Karaoke session, characterized as "raucous renderings" by co-proprietor Louise Owens. 5320 Maple Avenue (near Elliot's). 214.443.7818.

Safe Labor Day. Cheers!