Bonchon Shuts Down Temporarily, A Vegan Dessert Truck Launches and Ramen Remains Hot.
Welcome to The Spread, our weekly feature that aims to share all the area restaurant, food and beverage industry news that's fit to print. Except, this is the Internet, so space isn't a concern. Also: Good thing, because this is Dallas and this town always has breaking restaurant news going down like whoa.
It's not often that news of a restaurant shutting down is viewed as a positive thing.
Alas, that's just how things are being spun by the folks at the Korean fried chicken chain and sports bar Bonchon, which shut down operations yesterday — albeit only temporarily.
Due to the high volume of customers eagerly awaiting the new Greenville Avenue spot's overwhelmed staff, the owners of Bonchon decided to briefly shut down shop until they can train more workers. On their Facebook page, the owners say they're doing this “to ensure that [their restaurant] can provide you with the quality of food and service that you deserve.”
So that's something. As is this: When the shop does open for business again, customers can enjoy Revolver Brewing's limited release anniversary beer simply known as Mullett Cutter, as well as a more well-prepared staff. No word yet on when that will be, however.
In other, sadder news, it was revealed that Fuzzy Taco Shop owner Paul Willis was found dead in his home last Wednesday night. No official cause of death has been released, but reports say that Willis had quadruple bypass surgery two years ago. It's been a rough year for deaths in the ever-enterprising North Texas taco scene. Back in June, you may recall, Dallas also lost Rusty TacoRussell “Rusty” Fenton to cancer.
Fortunately, though, not all of the news in the Dallas food scene this week is bitter.
For instance, a new food truck dedicated to vegan desserts aims to roll out in January. Called Vegan Noms, the truck will provide customers with the standard fare of muffins, cookies, brownies and the like, and promises to do so with an animal cruelty-free process. Says truck owner Allison Catalani, you'll be able to find Vegan Noms around town at all the usual food truck hot spots, including Truck Yard and Klyde Warren Park.
Speaking of openings: Chino Chinatown, a Latin-Asian fusion restaurant, is set to open on December 30 over at Trinity Groves with a menu featuring shared plates including duck-fat fried rice and lobster shooters. They'll also offer a late-night dinner menu with dishes ranging from $4 to $9, as well as a selection of cocktails that can be ordered by the pitcher. The restaurant will be open for dinner and late-night service on Monday through Saturday, with a dim sum brunch service beginning on Sundays in late January.
In brew news, Deep Ellum Brewing Company released two new beers this month: Oak Cliff Coffee Ale and Four Swords. Although no information has yet to be released about the ale, that hasn't stopped the buzz from building around Four Swords, a Belgian-styled quadruple that's brewed with dark candy sugar and fermented with an Abbey Ale yeast. The brew will be the first beer from the brewery to be packaged in 750mL bottles, with plans for retail deliveries after the labels are approved. The DEBC team has been quick to tout the beer as its best yet, and at least one beer critic in town is already agreeing with them on that front.
As for that Oak Cliff Coffee Ale, well, it turns out that DEBC isn't the only beer company in town brewing up a coffee-inclined beer at the moment: In our interview today with Community Beer Company head Kevin Carr — in which we name Community as the 2013 North Texas Brewery of the Year — the brewery founder told us that his company is working on a coffee-infused porter in association with the Ascension Coffee crew. The beer, called Ascension Porter, will be ready for public consumption next year.
Keeping things on the booze-related front, we still have no certain word on where the Smyth and Cedars Social bar staffs are going to be settling down permanently in the wake of their November walk-out, but we do know where two of that team's bartenders will be at least one night this weekend. On Monday, Mate Hartai and Omar Yeefoon will host a celebration of Japanese whisky at The Libertine, where Hartai serves as bar manager, Joining them will be pop-up ramen restaurant specialist and Driftwood sous chef Justin Holt, who'll be cooking up dishes to go with the bartenders' specialty cocktails. Cocktails will run between $10 and $30, and a bowl of Holt's ramen will cost diners $12.
Finally, we end this week with some opening news: Origin Natural Food reopened yesterday as the full-service Origin Kitchen + Bar on McKinney Avenue; the team behind the old Green House Truck completed their upward mobility by opening up their permanent Green House Market spot in NorthPark Center on Friday; late-night fine dining option Gemma will open in Henderson on December 26; and My Family Pizza opened in Lakewood at the Skillman-Live Oak Shopping Center last Wednesday.
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