The Lime Shortage Is Getting Out of Control, Even as Fuel City Completes Its Expansion.
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.
Food shortages? They just suck.
Even when they're just threats, they do. Remember the Sriracha factory shutdown scare? Pho fanatics and spice junkies are still reeling from that one –and that's before we mention the ultimate disappointment of the red stuff not moving shop to Denton, either.
Or, hey, how about that time when everyone was worried about what our world would look like without Mexican Coke?
Point is, the fear is real.
And, this time, it's tacos, margaritas and key lime pies that we have to worry about. Yup: Persian limes are in short supply these days, and area restaurants are taking a serious hit as a result — to the tune of about $100 per case of the fruit.
In turn, Dallas restaurants are either raising their own prices or just seeking out alternatives instead. Velvet Taco, for one, has adapted to the change.
“We're a taco place, so we're affected,” says manager Karina Kan. “We had to cut down the usage of limes. It's kind of a big deal for our customers.”
For now, lemon wedges are being served with taco orders instead of lime ones, even though limes remain in the kitchen, used only for certain recipes.
“It's still an important ingredient,” says Kan.
Indeed. And here's hoping the shortage comes to an end in time for the fourth annual Margarita Meltdown put on by Espumoso Cafe and Backdrop Bloc Events. Luckily, though, we have time for things to stabilize or to find substitutions; the event isn't scheduled to go gown until Memorial Day weekend. But it's a good time, as we know from experience. Hey, watching best bartenders from 32 area bars compete for $1,000 and bragging rights for the best margarita in Dallas? How could it not be? Well, if there aren't any limes, I suppose. Anyway, the event takes place on Sunday, May 25 from 5 to 10 pm in the Bishop Arts District.
Meanwhile, back closer to downtown, months of renovations at Fuel City Tacos have finally brought the spot's expansion efforts to a close. The popular 24-hour joint's kitchen space has now doubled and the staff can now serve tacos, burritos and quesadillas from across four service windows. This cuts down on the wait time for post-party tacos rather substantially, making pretty much everyone happy.
In other renovation news, Stephan Pyles' newest venture, San Salvaje, opens later this month on April 28 in the old Samar space in the Arts District. The Central/South American-themed restaurant's menu is inspired by Pyles' extensive travels through Mexico and South America, with some Cuban and Caribbean influences mixed in. The alcohol selection also reflects a Latin American theme, with a wine list full of South American varietals and traditional Latin cocktails such as caipirinhas, mojitos and pisco sours.
Back in Oak Cliff, Chicken Scratch and The Foundry are putting on a celebration this month for all things Creole at their first annual Salute to King Creole Crawfish Festival. Guests can enjoy all-you-can-eat Creole tastings and drinks provided by Stoli Vodka and Peticolas Brewing Company. You can also get tattooed by John Arseneau of Elm Street Tattoo while enjoying live entertainment from Fort Worth's Zydeco Stingrays. The event takes place on Sunday, April 13 from 4:30 to 8:30 pm.
In the meantime, you can celebrate Rodeo Goat for winning the best burger prize at Fort Worth's Food + Wine Festival. The burger mavens' patties beat out Far Out Burger and Swiss Pastry Shop and boasted the longest lines for the burger crowd. Given that Fort Worth is an obvious burger town, this clearly means that Rodeo Goat knows what they're doing. And it should give Dallas burger fans something to look forward to whenever the Design District location of the joint opens up.
Speaking of opening up: We end this week with a plea for you to open your wallets, courtesy of the folks behind the White Rock Local Market. Theirs is a pretty simple request, however. All they ask is that, if you eat at the new Chipotle in Lakewood on Saturday between 11 a.m. and 10 p.m., you mention the White Rock Local Market to your servers. Should you remember to do so, the store will donate 50 percent of the proceeds from its sale to you to the efforts of the upstart farmer's market.
Whoever said that gluttony was a sin never thought of a promotion like this one, I suppose.
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