Tasting notes

Posted on 15 Jul 2016 at 7:35am

cowboy-ribeye--(1)

Unless you’re a Walloon, you probably don’t know that July 21 is Belgian Independence Day. Why is that important? Because Meddlesome Moth marks the occasion by designating July 18–22 Belgian Beer Week at the Design District gastropub. Each day will feature a different tapping of unique or interesting beers (from pale ales to sours), as well as a daily flight of five beers ($20) from the same family of brewers: The Duvel Single, and the Ommegang Rosetta (a brand new fruit-flavored powerhouse), and a trio of consecutive vintage quadrupel ales from 3 Philosophers ( 2011, ’12 and ’13).

Fans of the now-departed Stephan Pyles restaurant may be lamenting that while his new Flora Street Cafe continues to serve the signature blue corn muffins, other favorites from the old menu are not available there. True enough. But his other Uptown eatery, Stampede 66, is picking up some of the slack. Four of the most beloved dishes are migrating to the menu there, including the famous bone-in “Cowboy Ribeye,” pictured; the tamale tart with peekytoe crab; the Southwestern Caesar salad; and the Heaven & Hell cake. All are now available on the dinner menu.

Steel, the gayborhood sushi spot, has added new summer lunch items to its menu, including crispy rock shrimp, Thai crunch salad, Vietnamese buns and pad Thai. Lunch is served Monday–Friday from 11 a.m. to 2:30 p.m.

Uptown has a brand-new eatery: Next Door at 2908 McKinney Ave. is a chef-driven restaurant and bar overlooking the neighborhood from its second-floor patio. We’ll share a sneak-peek of chef Paul Niekrasz’s menu soon.

The Southern California-based fast-casual chain El Pollo Loco has about 400 locations — none of them in North Texas… yet. That’ll change next month with two locations opening in the Mid-Cities, followed by “five to seven more” by the end of the year, including in Dallas proper. The chain is known for its grilled bone-in chicken served whole, in burritos, tacos and bowls. But the chunky guacamole is the draw for me.

DFW Restaurant Week — when more than 100 local restaurants offer fixed-price menus ($35 or $45), with a portion of proceeds benefiting the North Texas Food Bank and Lena Pope — runs from Aug. 15–21 (though some places extend by a week or two). But reservation day is July 18, so get ready to line up on Monday to book your favorite, or the most popular, restaurants on the list.

— Arnold Wayne Jones

This article appeared in the Dallas Voice print edition July 15, 2016.

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