Toasted Coffee + Kitchen (Crockett Row at West 7th) + KITCHEN IS NOW OPEN ON Crockett Row at West 7th.
I got invited to a V.I.P. barbecue and whiskey dinner last Thursday night at Barrel and Bones in Fort Worth, just off of West 7th Street.
When I answered the phone, all I heard was two words; Bar-be-que and Whis-key!
You never have to ask me twice when there is beef and whiskey involved. Especially when it’s craft Texas whiskeys and cocktails served up with big phat slabs of beef, smoked turkey, smoked wings, fried deviled eggs, and fried poblano corn Fritters. Yea I bet I have your attention now, don’t I?
So there I was sitting in Barrel and Bones in Fort Worth salivating over smoked meats, tasty whiskey, and fried deliciousness.
The aromas coming from the kitchen were almost too much for this cowboy to handle. I was ready to pounce on some deliciousness and start slinging back some whiskey.
The barbecue and kitchen team at Barrel and Bones has done a great job at creating some amazing flavor profiles for all to enjoy.
When you think of Nashville hot chicken, all kinds of delicious thoughts come to find. Just think of crispy fried hot chicken dripping with delicious savory flavors that make you foodie senses run wild.
Nashville hot chicken has skyrocketed in popularity in the last two decades. I use the term “skyrocketed”, but really I think it’s been more like a supersonic ride.
If you don’t know what Nashville hot chicken consists of, then you must be a vegan or vegetarian, because these days it’s everywhere!
The origins of Nashville hot chicken are simple; it was created in the south Nashville back around 1930. In the 1970s, the new addition was created by using a different array of peppers and served with slices of white bread.
If you research the definition it’s a pretty basic explanation;
“Hot chicken, or Nashville hot chicken, is a type of fried chicken that is a local specialty of Nashville, Tennessee, in its typical preparation, it is a portion of breast, thigh, or wing that has been marinated in a water-based blend of seasoning, floured, fried, and finally sauced using a paste that has been spiced with cayenne pepper. It is served atop slices of white bread with pickle chips. It is both the application of a spicy paste and the presentation that differentiates it from similar dishes, such as Buffalo wings. It can be viewed in similar context to other foods that have been tweaked to be unique in a regional way, such as the slugburger or the Mississippi Delta tamale.”
In 2009 the Dallas Chocolate Festival was born.
Last Saturday evening August 17, at 7:00 pm we attended the 10th-Anniversary Dinner for the Dallas Chocolate Festival at the wonderful FAIRMOUNT Hotel in Dallas, Texas. It was a fun and vibrant night, surely one not to be forgotten. We were able to meet two amazing chefs and dine on some fantastic from scratch menu items, all from a five-course dinner menu. All the dishes had a touch of chocolate in them and were extremely creative dishes. At the event, they had various speakers after each course to help explain the ever changing wide world of craft chocolate.
It was an amazing evening.
Here’s a little backstory for you folks about the Dallas Chocolate Festival.
“In 2009, DallasChocolate.org’s founder hosted a chocolate-themed dinner celebrating the bean-to-bar makers who had just started bringing craft chocolate to life in the United States. – See more on DallasChocolate.org. From that night of education and deliciousness, the idea for the Dallas Chocolate Festival was born. To celebrate the 10th anniversary of that fateful dinner, and kick-off our the 2019 Dallas Chocolate Festival season, they hosted an exclusive multi-course chocolate dinner in the beautifully restored Venetian ballroom at the Fairmont Hotel. Executive Chef Jared Harms has crafted a five-course meal featuring chocolate flavors in each course from some of today’s leading craft chocolate brands: Dandelion Chocolate from San Francisco, CA; Amano Chocolate from Provo, Utah; French Broad Chocolate from Asheville, NC; and Dallas’s own 5 Mile Chocolate from Oak Cliff will all have their makers on hand to tell the stories of how this chocolate made it from bean to bar to dish. And of course, Fairmont’s amazing Pastry Chef, Cristal Gonzalez, will cap the meal with an array of chocolate desserts. – See more on dallaschocolate.org and we will see you at the 2019 Dallas Chocolate Festival.
Please see the 1oth Anniversary Dinner Menu and photos below.
Back in the 1920s, ’30s, ’40s, and ’50s, long before there was any social media platforms, entertainment facilities, and organized bar events we had luxurious dinner clubs.
These clubs had first-class service where the staff catered to every customer’s need. No matter what they needed, the staff and the dinner club would make it happen.
I know this because my family-owned restaurants and two meat companies in the Dallas/Fort Worth area at that timeframe. My granddad, along with his sales staff, would make sales calls on dinner clubs and gambling halls offering all kinds of meat products. I heard all the stories about how vibrant, interesting, and classy those clubs were back in the day.
My granddad and grandma would visit these places in the evening time, socializing with clients and their customers. It was a different time and place back then, and at times I wish as a society we still had some of those values.
If you’re one of the three million or so folks we reach every month then you how much I love to socialize, listen to great music, and slingback some cocktails. They say the apple doesn’t far from the tree and my case that is true.
I’m passionate about locating the very best food and drink experiences in Texas for everyone to enjoy. That means when I get a call, or I hear about a new place, I always make time to visit and see what it’s all about.
When I heard there was a new dinner club in Dallas I wondered if it would be a true dinner club or one of those places that just called themselves a dinner club.
As we were riding up the elevator to the dinner club I was getting excited about the possibility of certifying this place as one of the only true dinner clubs in DFW for our followers.
I’m happy to say I was extremely excited by the time the doors opened on the elevator.
The Clover Club is everything you could imagine and more. It’s a vibrant club with fantastic music, delicious chef-driven, flavor-packed menu, with a classy retro feel. I’m in love with the 1950’s vibe and the 2019 sound.
Chef Anthony believes in using only farm fresh vegetables and ingredients to achieve bold flavor profiles in every dish.
Eddie “Lucky” Campbell, who also owns the Parliament and the Standard Pour, partnered with Chef Anthony Van Camp to create dinner club magic in Dallas.
They have an entertainment director onboard as well. They organize the big band entertainment to ensure they keep the first-class standards that makes the Clover Club truly an original in Dallas.
After you eat and listen to some amazing music, or if you just want to take a little break, you can head upstairs to the rooftop bar and lounge area.
I truly enjoyed the rooftop it has amazing views of the Dallas area. You can grab some cocktails and take a seat on some comfortable patio furniture. If you like the bar area you can sit there too, or stand and gaze over the city of Dallas while you enjoy the beautiful evening in Texas.
I’m excited and thrilled to say I’m in love with The Clover Club. The offer real dinner and music experiences for everyone who walks through their doors. All I can say is: ” Clover Club is a place where one can eat, drink, and listen to some amazing music in a vibrant atmosphere. It’s truly a Dallas original and I’m glad they decided to create this beautiful place for everyone to enjoy.”
See you at the table, or maybe the bar!
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Friday August 16, 2019 is National Fajita Day in the USA!
They say the first culinary evidence of fajitas was in the 1930s, along with the Spanish naming. The cooking style used at that time was by a campfire or directly on a fire pit or in a skillet. Originally, it was made from throwaway cuts of beef by Mexican vaqueros in Southwest Texas. The fajita was developed as an everyday meal in the early 1930s. Since then everyone has fallen in love with the fajita!
Who doesn’t just love some succulent delicious fajitas? I think everyone loves fajitas! Well, at least every one I’ve ever spoken with loves them.
The main issue I’ve learned about fajitas and the folks enjoying them is everyone seems to always want more meat. Some of the other issues I hear from folks when I inquire about how they like there fajitas is pretty basic. They say fajitas can be dry and have little or no flavor, or they didn’t receive enough fixings. Everyone might desire more meat or fixings and eat them differently, use a different choice of corn or flour tortillas, but when it’s all said and done everyone loves fajitas.
Every chef, restaurant, or family business that offers fajitas has a different flavor profile. You won’t find any particular fajita meat with the same flavor profile! Everyone uses a different preparation process. They use an array of different spices, marinades, marinating processes, and cooking techniques. Some restaurants offer you fixings with your fajitas, and some charge you extra for it.
If you are one of the three million folks we reach every month then you know about what we’ve accomplished at Trey’s Chow Down Brands. The last seven years has been a wild ride and we are gaining ground every day.
One of my favorite things to do is grab a glass of whiskey, vodka, or any craft spirit, while I sip and socialize with friends. Five years ago one of my followers suggested I create a drinking side to Trey’s Chow Down because they loved following my travels and or nightly debauchery.
Three years ago we introduced the “Drink With Trey” side of our business and it’s been so rewarding. It’s a bit more raw, edgy, and crazy at times but a lot of fun!
We visit restaurants, distilleries, dinner clubs, bars, night clubs, event centers, and socializing events to locate some of the best spirits, food, and fun for all to enjoy.
The distillery business has changed so much that I decided a year ago to evaluate and locate some of the best spirits and distilleries in North Texas.
Back in the day when someone heard the word distillery what you thought of was a big place that produced spirits. A place where liquor is manufactured. It was generally known as a big factory where they created, produced, bottled, and shipped out tasty spirits. We’re talking vodka, whiskey, gin, bourbon, and any other spirit that one might enjoy. The distilleries used to be off the beaten path kind of hidden. Most of them were extremely large and not only needed lots of room but couldn’t be in the middle of the city or didn’t want to be. They were all about business, production, and shipping.
As most of you know those days are long gone in Texas. If you didn’t know this, then you’re either living under a rock, locked in prison, or live so far out in the country that this doesn’t matter to you anyway.
Craft distilleries have become a large part of the overall drinking experience. They have evolved into a perfect destination of exciting entertainment.
They offer educational tours, live entertainment, cocktail parties, gift shops, food, and plenty of craft cocktails to be enjoyed by everyone. The *NEW* generation craft distilleries work diligently at creating the perfect atmosphere for enjoying a cocktail and socializing with folks.
Drinking has become much more than just ripping a top off a bottle, taking a shot of something, or using a mixer to wash it down. People desire better experiences nowadays and long for the perfect destination to make that special occasion happen.
That’s why so many craft distilleries have popped up all over Texas. People basically have been asking for it and their prayers have been answered.
I’ve spent a couple of years visiting distilleries all of North Texas and I wanted to share my findings with my fellow drinkers, socialites, and entertainment seekers.
I want everyone to enjoy some great food, tasty cocktails, creative chefs, and mixologists all while laughing and having a fantastic Texas-sized time.
Life is about having fun, enjoying your family and friends, and locating the best experiences as possible to enjoy. I would suggest that you share these findings with your friends and visit all of these distilleries to have some fun.
Fort Worth, Texas
Leonard Firestone and Troy Robertson founded the Firestone & Robertson Distilling Co., the first craft bourbon and whiskey distillery in North Texas. I’m in LOVE with TX Whiskey. I can’t possibly calculate how much of this whiskey I’ve drank at both the old facility and the new one. TX Whiskey Ranch is an unbelievable place. It is the largest distillery in DFW by size and the entertainment area, which even includes its own golf course. The place is unbelievably beautiful and has everything one desires for a drinking and socializing destination in the DFW area. If you are looking for the experience of the perfect spirit then head over to TX Whiskey Ranch.
Deep Ellum Vodka
Deep Ellum, Texas
Deep Ellum Distillery was founded by John Reardon, who also founded Deep Ellum Brewery. They have some amazing vodka that I’ve had plenty of. The master distiller Reade Huddleston spent over a year in Europe learning how to master the distilling process. He has created some amazing vodka flavors at Deep Ellum. They have several different flavors of vodka they create. You can also enjoy some of Aaron Wangs incredibly tasty craft cocktails. The distillery offers a large entertainment area, games, a stage for live entertainment, a merch area, and plenty of fun. If you enjoy vodka and are looking for fun times then head over to Deep Ellum! I had fun with the DEEP Ellum team on our Podcast TV show. Check it out when you get a chance you will enjoy it.
Fort Worth, Texas
Born in Muleshoe, Texas and raised in Fort Worth, BlackEyed has an incredible story. It is the only vodka born and bred from black eye peas. Owners, distillers, and distributors, Todd Gregory and Scott Billings, have created magic with their brand of vodka. They have one of the most unique vodka products on the market today. It has its own flavor profile and makes the most incredible bloody Mary. The distillery is extremely beautiful and was built in a 100-year-old firehouse. It’s a two-story distillery with a big old school bar and entertainment area on the second floor. They offer tours, live entertainment, and lots of fun. Head over and experience the enjoyment!
Vodka, Bourbon, & Gin
Fort Worth, Texas
Blackland Distillery owner, Markus Kypreos, and head distiller, Ezra Cox, have done an amazing job at creating a sophisticated upscale environment at the Blackland taproom. I’ve visited the taproom twice and I really have to say how much I enjoy the atmosphere and cocktails. The staff is super friendly and knowledgeable when you’re wanting to discover what Blackland is all about. They offer vodka, gin, bourbon, and a vast array of craft cocktails. The taproom is a classy low-key place where you can sit at the horseshoe-shaped bar, or in one of the booths, or the big comfortable chairs. I really enjoy this place and spirits. When you get a chance, put them on your list for a visit!
The Duckworth brand vodka is a flavorful vodka and fairly new to the DFW vodka scene. Owner, Lee Fugua, will happily tell his vodka is an artisanal sipping vodka in unique flavors. He would be correct! It is some, dare I say it, delicious vodka made from 100% sugarcane with flavors like Duckworth original, French Oak Barrel, and Truffle. It is truly a sipping vodka. You can create a craft cocktail or martini that tastes like MORE because you’ll definitely be saying, “Thanks can I have one more please”? The distillery is a cozy little place just off Lemon Ave in Dallas where you can find Lee discussing his vodka and telling stories from his wine days. It’s always fun with a vibrant atmosphere. When you have time check out Duckworth and have some joy. Just be sure and check their hours before heading over to visit them.
The Witherspoon branded whiskey to me is very smooth and easy to drink. It’s a craft branded whiskey prepared in small batches. It was created in 2011 by Quentin Witherspoon with his co-founders Natasha and Ryan DeHart. The distillery is beautiful and has tasting areas for craft cocktails, a gorgeous outdoor area that is kid-friendly, and they offer live entertainment. Like most distilleries, they offer tours and will happily discuss anything about the smooth craft spirits. I’ve only visited this place once but I fell in love with the Weatherspoon brand. This is a must-visit place on your DFW distillery tour.
Corporate Office Dallas
Distillery Austin, Texas
They DO NOT have a distillery in the DFW area, but they are working on having one soon. Noble Wolf Vodka is a very flavorful vodka and fairly new to the DFW vodka scene. Owner, Bryce Cottrell, developed Noble Wolf Vodka while attending the University Of Texas. He will tell you, ” The Noble Wolf brand is the first premium grade alcoholic spirit to be uniquely and attentively produced from 100% pure and natural Florida grapefruits resulting in a refreshing and gluten-free vodka. ” I LOVE the taste of this vodka! To me it’s very smooth and oh so refreshing with a hint of grapefruit. The best thing about this vodka is there is no after taste, it’s just SMOOTH! I had a chance to spend some time interviewing Bryce for my national T.V. and radio podcast on Trey’s Chow Down LIVE. You can watch this episode below.
I hope you go enjoy some of these awesome craft spirits and have some fun, maybe get into some debauchery like Drink With Trey. If you check one of these places out, make sure to share your experience with us! Until next time, Live, Eat, Drink, Laugh, & Love!
Trey’s Chow Down brands is proud to partner with the NEW Blaine Stone Lodge for this exciting premier event in Ellis County on June 15th 2019.
Blaine Stone Lodge is located 30 minutes south of both downtown Dallas and Fort Worth and is the newest catering and events center in Ellis County. The lodge sits on a scenic lake and is surrounded by 1,000 acres of a Texas outdoorsman’s paradise.
At Blaine Stone Lodge, we are creating North Texas’ premier steak cookoff and Texfest. We’ve partnered with Wagyu Excelente, one of the finest Texas Wagyu beef, to create a fine dining event paired with specialty beers, wines and liquors.
This is a family-friendly event and will feature an off-road race in the morning, classic car and truck show, local and regional culinary delights, as well as several fun activities for adults and kids like a Floating Hole-in-One Competition, Tug-of-War, Cornhole Competition, and Balloon Launch!
A portion of the proceeds from this event will benefit the Chris Kyle Frog Foundation, a Texas-based 501(c)3 nonprofit organization dedicated to restoring military and first responder communities by keeping families together.
General Admission tickets (ages 15+) are $59. Ticket includes full day access to all events as well as the chefs, access to side buffet, two (2) drink tickets, and one (1) voting voucher.
Child Admission tickets (ages 6-14) are $39. Ticket includes full day access to all events as well as chefs, and access to side buffet.
VIP tickets are $99. Ticket includes full day access to all events as well as the chefs, three (3) drink tickets, one (1) voting voucher, guaranteed VIP seating near the entertainment stage, Texas Gulf Shrimp and Wagyu Prime Rib Dinner, and a VIP Goody Bag.
All-Day Premium Bar Pass is $39. Package includes full day access to Texas-centric premium drinks.
All teams must bring everything they need except for meat.
We are inviting twenty (20) of the top Beef Chefs in the DFW area to compete with two (2) cuts of Wagyu Excelente NY strip steaks. Winner gets trophy/bragging rights, Chris Kyle trophy, special chef coat, four (4) night’s stay in a private home in Belize, and other prizes to be determined.
An additional 50-100 teams, including military and first responder teams, will compete in cooking Wagyu Excelente New York strip steaks. Entry fee for teams is $150 and can include up to four (4) people.
Each cookoff team will receive two (2) 14 oz Wagyu New York strip steaks and two (2) hours to cook. Start time is at 11 am with presentation at 2 pm. Teams should bring one (1) hot or cold signature side for guest sampling at their booth. Guests will vote on Best Beef and Best Side.
Quail entry $25 with presentation at 1 pm.
The top fifteen (15) steaks chosen will then get two (2) more steaks to cook at 4 pm, for the Judging Panel, with presentation at 5:45 pm. Teams are encouraged to create a signature side dish to accompany their steaks.
The Judging Panel is comprised of beef professionals, chefs, and celebrity guests, referred by the Steak Cookoff Association (SCA), the sanctioning body that certifies steak cookoffs around the world.
Cash awards for 1st thru 10th place, along with a prize for 1st and 2nd for Best Beef and Best Side. Top prize is $2,500, the same as the world championship prize! Quail payout – winner takes all.
- Clay Shoot
- Car & Truck Show
- Photo Booth
- Meat Market & education
- Gun Raffle
- Cookoff Team Competition Tug-of-War
- Floating Hole-in-One
- Corn Hole Tournament
- Messina Hof Winery tent with tasting & retail
- Food vendors: Texas Quail, Beef Jerky, Texas Cheeses and Charcuterie
Giddy Up and we will see y’all at the world famous Blaine Stone Lodge.
Trey (Chow Down) Chapman