Tasting notes • August 14, 2009

Posted on 13 Aug 2009 at 5:43pm
By Arnold Wayne Jones Life+Style Editor

Sprinkles offers Cowboys cupcake; Pyles prepares to open new spot

In the pantheon of effective pick-up lines — "I drive a Ferrari," "I am a casting agent for Falcon Studios," "The character of Dirk Diggler was based on me" — you can probably add, "I have a box of Sprinkles cupcakes back at my place." At about $3 each, these baseball-sized bombs of rich frosting and moist cake are almost always drool-worthy. And now, Dallas-centric.

From Sept. 12–19 — just in time for Pride — the Beverly Hills-based bakery with a shop in  Preston Center will offer a Blue Velvet cupcake (dark cake with blue food coloring; Dennis Hopper not included) topped with a lush cream cheese icing and a blue sugar star: Tony Romo in a paper cup. One hundred percent of proceeds go to the Salvation Army. Now if only we can get them to do a rainbow cupcake (banana frosting, natch) that benefits Resource Center Dallas ….

In keeping with its theme of Latin flavors, Stephan Pyles Restaurant is launching a new happy hour special featuring the passion chile margarita, from 5 to 7 p.m. Mondays through Saturdays on the bar and patio.

Pyles himself is remaining muy busy. Next month, he opens Samar, his first new restaurant in four years, near his current Arts District flagship. And on Aug. 30, Pyles hosts four other acclaimed chefs — among them Sara Johannes of Five Sixty by Wolfgang Puck and David Uygur of Lola — for his Share Our Strength’s A Tasteful Pursuit fundraising dinner. Tickets are $175 per person. For reservations, call 888-273-6141.

Cliff Café, the Doug Brown-developed restaurant attached to the Hotel Belmont in Oak Cliff, is closed for renovation … and to launch a new concept. Chef Tim Byres, who until recently served as Stephan Pyles’ executive chef, will develop the new restaurant along with Bolsa owners Chris Zielke and Christopher Jeffers. The bistro is set to reopen next month.

Tea Thyme and Tisane, a new gay-owned tea shop, opened earlier this month in Carrollton.

Nana at the top of the Hilton Anatole was inducted into the Fine Dining Hall of Fame — the only Dallas restaurant added this year by Nation’s Restaurant News.

The West Village’s Cru, A Wine Bar incorporates locally-grown heirloom tomatoes in its menu for the month of August.

Uptown-based Fuqua Winery won a gold medal last month at the San Francisco International Wine Competition for is 2006 Tempranillo (Vat No. 3).

This article appeared in the Dallas Voice print edition August 14, 2009.

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