Evaluating delivery culture: Gourmet food (Blue Apron) & cocktails (Sourced) delivered to your home; Taste of Dallas, Chefs for Farmers Mix-Off return


Enjoy a craft cocktail at Chefs for Farmers’ Mix-Off Sunday … or learn to make your own with the new delivery app Sourced.

Technology is awesome, but even those of us who live in Uber rides and book every happy hour with friends on OpenTable have to admit: The service-delivery culture has become mind-boggling. For one, there’s now Blue Apron, a service that sends all the best ingredients needed for you to cook gourmet meals at home, including step-by-step recipes. It’s practically a cult now (and you can read about my experience with that cult at DallasVoice.com’s InstanTea blog right now).

But that’s just food … what about booze? Well, that’s where Sourced comes in. The app launched in Austin late last year, and has spread now to Dallas and Houston. It’s sort of the Blue Apron of craft cocktails: You download the app, select the cocktails you wanna learn about and prepare, and within three hours a mixologist arrives with all the ingredients (and know-how) to teach you how to make your own professionally-executed cocktails. Mix ’em, enjoy ’em and when you’re done, leave the package on your stoop for the company to pick up. Now you don’t need to take an Uber home from happy hour — you can do it at your place.

For the Dallas launch, Sourced has announced five new cocktail recipes, featuring Texas-based spirits like Tito’s Vodka and Deep Eddy Peach Vodka, as well as Hendrick’s Gin, Maker’s Mark Bourbon and Milagro Tequila. Cheers!

If you still like to schmooze when you booze, you don’t have to do it alone — there’s always the Chefs for Farmers Mix-Off, which returns to the Design District June 5. I was one of the judges last year, and it’s a blast as local mixologists battle it out to show who has the most creative take on cocktails. There’s liquor as well as some bites, and it unofficially kicks off the main event of Chefs for Farmers later in the year. It runs 5–8 p.m. at DEC, 1414 Dragon St. Tickets are $75 and available at Prekindle.com/events/ChefsForFarmers.

This weekend also marks the 30th anniversary of Taste of Dallas, and if anyone has ever attended it in the sweltering heat, the cooler, rainy temps we’ve had this week will be a welcome respite. But rain or shine, there’s plenty to whet your whistle over, from food to art to music to beverages.

New this year is the Foodie Experience, an indoor event that includes food and alcohol samplings, chef demos, entertainment and a slice of cake prepared by Carlo’s Bake Shop from the hit show Cake Boss. (The Foodie Experience is presented by TangoTab, an app that benefits food banks.)

Taste of Dallas runs Friday–Sunday at Fair Park, and will featuring servings (most $2–$5) from Texas de Brazil, Gas Monkey, Paciugo and even Fletcher’s Corny Dogs, as well as a line-up of a dozen food trucks. Tickets are $20. Get more details at TasteOfDallas.org.

Restaurant.com, a website that offers deals and coupons for diners at area restaurants, is getting involved in Gay Pride Month. It started earlier this week with a free certificate to the Stonewall Inn in New York, as well as neighboring restaurants, but all month long the site encourages use of the hashtag #YouBeYou to spread awareness of equality.

Dish founder Tim McEneny had planned to open his new concept, Cedar Grove, in the ilume by Memorial Day, but everyone knows that best laid plans of restaurateur aft gang agley. But that’s OK. McEneny tells me mid-to-late June is the new target opening for the restaurant. And considering that Dish famously had unisex bathrooms long before North Carolina raced to lead the bigotry marathon, we’re guessing the new place will be just as trans-friendly as the old space.

— Arnold Wayne Jones

This article appeared in the Dallas Voice print edition June 3, 2016.