News & Reviews

  • Sat, 22-Aug-2015

    At the preview for the upcoming Dallas Chocolate Festival we tasted scrumptious artisan bonbons, truffles, toffees, barks, brigadeiros, and macarons and talked to the makers.

    Our favorites (try not to drool):

    • Dr. Sue's Midnight Mocha Bark. I nabbed a few extra bites of this bark made of dark chocolate mixed with a dark roasted ground coffee bean and loved it with breakfast, too.
    • Dallas Caramel Company's Armadillos. Rain McDermott nestles crunchy, fresh roasted Texas pecans between precise caramel and dark chocolate layers.
    • Toffee Treats. ML Dubay's family recipe consistently delivers perfect balance and crunch. I can't get enough of the Hatch Chile Dark Chocolate Almond Toffee.
    • Haute Sweets Patisserie. Chef Tida Pichakron's array of sweet delights starred many textured delights - macarons and a passion fruit ganache chocolate bonbon.
    • The brigadeiro, made by pastry chef Edvone Goncalves, who named her company - Nina Brigadeiro - after her mother. The soft chocolate interior rolled in sprinkles is the Brazilian classic and the flavor variations are endless; I loved the one rolled in parmesan cheese.
    • Frankie V's Kitchen makes Something Powerful, a complete meal replacement - for your vegan friend, and Something Chocolate.
    • David Collier, pastry chef for Knife and Oak, inspired us with a workshop demo, cheered us with his wit and advice for choosing the right tools, and sent us off with a dreamy chocolate macaron and fine confections.

    And there are bars. Bars made by bean-to-bar chocolate makers who source cacao beans directly from farmers, process and roast the beans themselves, controlling every step to the finished product. The single origin bars are likened to single vineyard wines. As with wine, you can extend your enjoyment over time, learning about the origins and distinctive differences.

    I sipped Lakewood Temptress to clear my palate. Others paired samples with a full-bodied Zin, an Italian sweet red and Temptress.

    You'll want to meet Sander Wolf, founder of the festival. Not just a guy with a sweet tooth, he's championing chocolate makers as Bart Weiss has championed film and video makers.

    Buy tickets now for The Art of Chocolate, Saturday, September 12, 2015, at the Addison Conference Centre. Before you tap ORDER NOW, enter the promotional code WineChocolate. Tap "Apply" to receive 10% off the regular ticket price, and then ORDER NOW.

  • Mon, 06-Jul-2015
    2015 Rosé Roundup

    With so many new Rosé wines arriving in the Dallas market, our review process has taken longer than usual.
    More details will be posted soon. Remember, you should be looking for 2014 vintage Rosés for Summer drinking (we've seen a few local sales with 2012 and 2013 wines). While some older vintages will be just fine (notably Tavel and Bandol), most Rosés are meant to be quaffed within a year of release.

    For now, a quick list of some of our favorites this year:

    2014 Domaine de la Mordorée Tavel ($16-$30, depending on appellation & vineyard. Stunning and delicious.)
    2014 Château de Cornemps Bordeaux Rosé ($15, Cabernet-based, richer style with big berry colors and flavors)
    2014 Il Poggione Rosato di Toscana ($18, Italian and 100% Sangiovese, food-friendly, and a nice change from Southern France)
    2014 Marqués de Cáceres Rioja Rosé ($10 or less, not as nice as previous vintages, but almost always a great value)
    2014 Tempier Bandol (Expensive, but almost always outstanding)

    And, we just received word that Domaines Ott is back in Dallas (Pogo's, probably Sigel's, and others). This one is almost always delicious.

  • Elevate your chocolate knowledge: Dallas Chocolate Workshops Sunday, September 14, 2014 at 3015 at Trinity Groves
    3015 at Trinity Groves

    Want to get your hands dirty?

    Three hands-on Sunday workshops showcase artisan chocolate. Learn about the unique flavors and methods from local and nationally known expert chocolate crafters.

    Register for individual workshops or take the package for a special price.

    Sunday, Sept. 14, 10am-6pm: ALL THREE WORKSHOPS PACKAGE
    $225, one whole day working with chocolate. Includes all three workshops: the 10am-noon chocolate desserts master class, the 1-3:30pm bean-to-bar chocolate making workshop, and the 4-6pm chocolate and wine pairing workshop.

    Sunday, Sept. 14, 10am-Noon: Chocolate Desserts Workshop
    $75, a two-hour hands-on master class. David Collier, executive pastry chef for Spoon Bar & Kitchen and Knife, will guide participants through each step of making chocolate desserts. For beginners and pros.

    Sunday, Sept. 14, 1-3:30pm: Bean-to-Bar Chocolate Making Workshop
    $125, a trio of renowned chocolate makers: Kristin Hard of Cacao Atlanta, Ben Rasmussen of Potomac Chocolate, and Scott Moore, Jr of Tejas Chocolate guide you through the entire process of transforming high quality cacao beans into fine chocolate bars. Participants take home their finished product. Suitable for beginners or experts.

    Sunday, Sept. 14, 4-6pm: Chocolate & Wine Pairing Workshop
    $75, a hands-on chocolate and wine pairing experience guided by chocolate expert Madame Cocoa (Adrienne Newman) and a sommelier specializing in Texas wines. 21+ only.

    Purchase tickets online in advance. Enter promotional code DallasWineChocolate to receive a 10% discount. Space is limited. Events are subject to change.
    Workshop Location: the 3015 at Trinity Groves event space and kitchen, 3015 Gulden Lane Dallas, TX 75212

    -, September 2014

  • Passport to Rioja: Journey into the Heart of the Rioja Wine Region

    Members of the trade are invited to taste the full spectrum of Rioja offerings including centenary wines, classic modern styles and collector’s wines. Ana Fabiano, trade director for the U.S. Rioja campaign, brand ambassador for DOCa Rioja, and author of The Wine Region of Rioja will be on hand to provide expertise and sign copies of her book.
    Date/time: Tuesday, August 19th, 2014, 1–4pm
    Complimentary/Trade Only: business card required for entry
    Location: Mercy Wine Bar, 5100 Beltline Road #544, (Village on the Parkway shopping center - Dallas Parkway at Beltline Road), Addison, 75254, 972.702.9463

    - Karen Silverston, August 2014

  • Wine and Cheese Pairing Class with Winemaker Kim McPherson and Cheesemaker Paula Lambert Thursday, July 10, 2014 6:30pm

    Learn about wine and cheese pairing from two experts named to Who's Who in Wine and Food of Texas.

    Kim McPherson - inducted into Who's Who in Wine and Food of Texas in 1999: plants to the land. His focus is on Rhone, Italian and Spanish varietals. Under the McPherson Cellars label he produces grapes grown on the Texas High Plains including Sagmor Vineyard, Lost Draw Vineyards, and other areas of the High Plains. His wines include Sangiovese, Viognier, Tre Colore (a Rhone style red blend of Carignan, Mourvedre, Viognier), dbs (a blend of Italian varietals Dolcetto, Barbera, Sangiovese), Dry Rosé (a dry Rhone style rosé of Cinsault, Mourvedre, Grenache), Cabernet Sauvignon, a Tempranillo blend, and more. McPherson Cellars 2013 Les Copains Brothers Blend, a white Rhone varietal blend, just won the Double Gold Medal at the San Francisco International Wine Competition and was voted Best White Rhone Blend in the competition. McPherson Cellars 2012 La Herencia and McPherson Cellars 2013 Les Copains Dry Rosé won Silver medals.

    Paula Lambert - inducted into Who's Who in Wine and Food of Texas in 1988: founded Dallas' Mozzarella Company in 1982. Today her company has grown from making a few pounds of fresh mozzarella to producing over 30 artisanal cheeses, all of which Paula has created and developed. Mozzarella Company cheeses have won acclaim and hundreds of awards, and each is made by hand right here in Deep Ellum.

    Date/Time: Thursday, July 10, 2014, 6:30-8:30pm
    Cost: $50
    Reserve: 214.741.4072
    Location: Mozzarella Company, 2944 Elm Street, Dallas (Deep Ellum) TX 75226

    -, July 2014

  • Jump Into Summer Wine Dinner with Oak Cliff Cellars and Chef Justin Box at Bridge Bistro

    Oak Cliff Cellars wines paired with six-course dinner featuring chef Justin Box.
    Date/time: June 17, 2014, 6:30pm reception; 7pm Dinner
    Cost: $79 plus tax/gratuity at the door
    Location: Bridge Bistro, 921 N. Riverfront Blvd., Dallas TX 75207 (SW corner of North Riverfront & Payne)

    Red Snapper Crudo
    Texas purple spinach, grapefruit, olive oil, habanero sea salt
    Oak Cliff Cellars Lake County Sauvignon Blanc 2012

    Southwest Green Gazpacho
    black cumin oil, crispy shallot
    Oak Cliff Cellars Sonoma Chardonnay 2011

    Charred Wax Beans
    french bread, goat belly croutons, grape tomatoes, herbs, yogurt
    Oak Cliff Cellars Wild Diamond Mourvedre 2012

    Chicken n’ Biscuits
    confit chicken, house biscuits, spring slaw, pecans, pimenton, Texas honey
    Oak Cliff Rogues Blend 2012

    House Made Ostrich Sausage
    black garlic, caraway, champagne, pickled beets
    Oak Cliff Cellars Zipline Red 2012

    Vanilla Olive Oil Cake
    goat cheese, mix berry compote, basil syrup
    Oak Cliff Cellars Firebrick Zinfandel 2012

    -, June 2014

  • Margerum Wine Dinner at Lark on the Park Featuring Doug Margerum

    Five course dinner paired with Margerum wines featuring winemaker Doug Margerum
    Date/Time: Tuesday, March 25th, 2014 at 7pm
    Cost: $75, plus tax/gratuity
    Reserve: Lark on the Park at 214.855.5275, or email gm at larkonthepark dot com
    Location: 2015 Woodall Rodgers Freeway [between N. Harwood St. and Olive St.], Dallas TX 75201

    House-Made Ricotta Tart with Fromage Blanc, Green Garlic and Mint
    Margerum Pinot Gris Klickitat 2012

    Grilled Asparagus with Tangerine Aioli, Bottarga and Breadcrumbs
    Margerum Sauvignon Blanc Sybarite 2012

    Point Reyes Tome & Original Blue Cheeses with Arugula, Aged Balsamic, Rhubarb-Strawberry Compote with Baguette
    Margerum Rose Riviera 2013

    Grenache Braised Oxtail with Spatzle & Pea Tendrils
    Margerum Rhone Blend M5 2012

    Grilled American Kobe Skirt Steak with Blue Cheese Butter, Fingerling Potatoes, Bacon Lardons, Crème Fraiche and Chives
    Margerum Syrah Colson 2010

    Margerum Amaro

    -, March 2014