Friday, September 30, 2005

Village Burger Bar

Sad to see that the Gallery Café in the West Village closed. Gotta move on. So a new entity takes its place: Village Burger Bar from Mike & Susan Matta, who own Magnolia Café & Bakery (ex-branch of the n.s.g. Celebrity Bakery) in Lewisville. VBB will have burgers w/ upscale toppings, sorta Who's Who-ish but a nicer hang, w/ salads, paninis, milkshakes, & root beer on tap, as well as microbrewed beers and a highly civilized wine policy in which every bottle stocked will be available by the glass.

Village Burger Bar, West Village, 214-443-9998, opening mid-Oct.

Wednesday, September 28, 2005

AZ pomegranate green tea

If a blog wanted to, it could devote itself 24-7 to Arizona, which intros new beverages w/ stunning frequency. (Pity this blog already has other, far better things on which to fixate.) Aside from sheer abundance, what makes AZ compelling is the way its flavor innovations follow (or is it lead?) the latest nutraceutical trends and is thus somewhat pop-culturey. With no further ado: Arizona pomegranate green tea. Pomegranate, as you know, is a hot new antioxidant -- but to be safe, AZ also IDs it on the label as "Chinese apple" for those not yet up on the pomegranate thing.

Tuesday, September 27, 2005

Doug and Bruski's

Ways that Doug and Bruski's is not a typical restaurant-sports bar: 1. It’s at the tony Shops at Willowbend in Plano. 2. Comes from the folks who own Canyon Café (doug & bruce & pat), which is no slouch. 3. Has upscale menu w/ applewood-smoked salmon, roast chick, "white" lasagna w/ chick&vegs as well as the more manly burgers & prime rib. It’s pushing the family thing w/ pool tables, video room, etc. Coincidence? It has the same initials as a certain other sports-bar rest chain.

6121 W. Park Blvd (@ NW corner of Tollway), plano. 972-202-4599. opening mid-october

Friday, September 23, 2005

Boulder Ice Cream

A chance to say something nice for a change: Boulder Ice Cream, a super-premium made in yes Boulder, Colo & sold at WF. Unlike the corporate elephants who’ve (dining pun alert) devoured the ice cream world and turned it into a vanilla dead zone (nothing against vanilla), Boulder's a small co. w/ creative flavors: Mexican choc, green tea, coffee n toffee, ginger cream, banana almond nugget, & pearl street malt. (Malt: pinnacle of flavors.) They make their ice cream using milk from cows not treated w/ rGBH

Thursday, September 22, 2005

Tahitian Noni Cafe

While undoubtedly a wonderful state, Utah is hardly the 1st place you’d expect to find nutritional supplements grown in the tropics. Yet it’s the HQ of Tahitian Noni Café – which is opening a branch on the ground floor of Mondrian Cityplace. Noni is a green tropical fruit supposedly used by native Polynesians to boost the immune system and treat respiratory & digestive illnesses. Tahitian Noni Café puts it in tea, smoothies, froz yog desserts, and also does samwiches, salads, muffins, cookies. Other TNC locations: Japan, Brazil, Germany, & Atlanta, GA; is Dallas part of some int’l community or what?

3000 blackburn st. no # yet

Tuesday, September 20, 2005

Blue Bell Butterscotch Nut

Bypassing the usual Blue Bell flogging for a moment, the thing about its newest flavor Butterscotch Nut is this: Isn't butterscotch really the same as caramel? Were you blindfolded, could you tell the diff betw the two? And isn’t it odd that at the same time Blue Bell releases this, it also issues a seasonal flavor, caramel sundae crunch which, aside from the add-ins, sounds identical ("caramel ice cream+caramel swirl w/ choc-coated sugar cone pieces) to butterscotch nut ("butterscotch ice cream+butterscotch sauce swirl w/ crunchy roasted almonds")? Anyway, re: Butterscotch Nut, the ice cream's nuttin-special but the almonds are ++ toasty/crunchy

Monday, September 19, 2005

Taco Viva

Taco Viva #1 opened last wk, and so arrives a new Mexican chain, but before you dismiss it, consider: 1. it comes from Bill Waugh, founder of taco bueno (as well as Casa Bonita & Crystal’s Pizza), and more recently Burger Street (w/ which he’s still involved). 2. guacamole made fresh daily meat & beans cooked onsite + chili as signature sauce/item splashed on just about everything. Taco Viva #2 will open soon in Rockwall, next to an upgraded burger street called burger street café, a fast-casual deal w/ fireplace & comfy furniture. Look for 5-6 Taco Vivas to open w/in next yr

14520 Josey Lane, Farmers Branch. 972-241-4224

Friday, September 16, 2005

Nestle Toll House Swirled Morsels

S’mkt choc chips are bleh, especially the nat'l brands. And yet, endless spinoffs in size (mini, mega, chunks) & flavor (white, mint, PB, cappuccino) ... someone’s buying it. The latest, Nestle Toll House Swirled Morsels, fascinates cuz they're so overtly superficial (as in, obviously made not for taste but cuz they look cute). Insane, having to ensure that each chip has a spiral-y swirl. 3 "flavors" (tho the more approp word here is colors): milk choc w/ caramel, semi-sweet & white choc, and milk chocolate w/ pb. It's just another way to get kids to eat more sugar, but Nestle suggests in a transparent effort to make them seem multi-purpose that they'd make a good "snack" don't think so

Wednesday, September 14, 2005

JITB Root Beer Float

thanks to the impulsive buy for the kick-ass pic

Disclaimers: Jack in the Box's Root Beer Float has been out since mid July but eluded detection. (It’s an awful busy summer when a JITB visit hasn’t been made for 2 mths.) So, this item, not fresh off the griddle. Even if it were brand-new, a JITB RB Float might not have the same news value as, say, a coffee Kit Kat. (Which is, like, wow.) Finally, yesyesyes any idiot can make a rb float at home. The point is, how cool that a standard fast-food chain (exception: A&W) offers something off-the-assembly-line such as this. Made w/ soft-serv & Barq’s RB, available for a limited time ifyouwant1betterhurryB4it’sgone

Monday, September 12, 2005

Kit Kat: coffee

If you’ve been abroad, you know Kit Kat spinoffs are old news. But as cybele detailed in a recent posting, international Kit Kats = Nestle. US = Hershey. (A company that, for a long time, resisted change; no more.) If you’ve been abroad, you also know there’ve been café latte and cappuccino kit kats in japan, yearned for by coffee fiends. So: yay for the new limited edition coffee Kit Kat which has a great coffee flavor btw now available here in the USA

Friday, September 09, 2005

The animals are screwed

Click here to donate.

Thursday, September 08, 2005

Hershey’s Fairly Odd Berry Syrup

The official item for today is Hershey’s Fairly Odd Berry Syrup, a ltd-edit bundle o'sugar promoting some kid flick (redux the green-tinted syrup, vintage ’03, promoting Hulk). Hershey’s was unable to say exactly what berry it is; "I just have 'berry-flavored choc syrup'," droned the customer-service rep. The ingredients (sugar, corn syrup, water, citric acid, etc) tell ya nuthin; But who cares: researching Fairly Odd Berry unearthed another much-more important flavor. Hershey's Whoppers Malt Syrup! Not seen locally, yet released back in ’99. Who knew? Other Hershey syrup flavors incl. choc w/ calcium, special dark, & strawb.

Wednesday, September 07, 2005

Godiva's Chocolixir

Godiva’s piling on to the Frappuccino deal w/ Chocolixir, a blended icy drink sold in the retail stores. (A big deal: It requires sinks etc.) Unlike Starbucks’ original, it uses choc not coffee; also has 2X calories (700) and nearly 2X price ($4.50). Made w/ ice, choc powder, & choc chips, it comes in 3 flavors: milk choc latte, dark choc decadence, & white choc rasp. The residue from the choc chips is said to add a pleasurable grit. Speaking of which, did you know that Godiva's owned by Campbell Soup? And that they gave away free samples at the end of July? And that they reportedly $$ a buncha blogs (not this one, sigh) to review the drink="get the grass-roots word out"?

Tuesday, September 06, 2005

"Norman Rockwell" ice cream

In the realm of b.s. products not worth buying (but well worth ragging): "new" Norman Rockwell ice cream. (New being a relative term since the few remaining corps who run the ice cream biz won't innovate w/ new flavors anymore.) What's "new" is the package: a Norman Rockwell image on the carton. Which would be exciting if you ate cartons. Cringe, it’s made locally: by Southwest Ice Cream (they make Oak Farms ice cream, which is what this prob is), div of Dean Foods, but conceived by L&M, 2 guys aiming to profit on a whole buncha junk (jams, etc) merched under the Norman Rockwell brand.

Friday, September 02, 2005

Happy Labor Day wkend

pic taken by the multi-talented Spinnaker007

Thursday, September 01, 2005

Wangs and Thangs

How many chicken wings can we eat? We got a ton of chains: wingstop, pluckers, wing zone, wings to go, wings of glory, lone star wings, ETCETERA. But here’s a mom&pop: Wangs and Thangs, in south dallas, from Andre Turner, former investigator & military man, and wife Belisha, who goes by Renee, who runs the kitchen. Are their wings deep-fried like everyone else’s? Yes. But they’re whole big wings, homestyle, not the itty-bitty wings you get at the chains. They also do catfish, turkey legs, sausage on a stick, burgers, & more. Sorry, no first-hand testimony ... but you gotta love them on the merit of the name alone.

5000 hohen ave, off 45, near Lamar & Emery. 214-565-8599
6 pm to 10 p.m tues-thurs. fri-sat 6 pm to 3 am.