Photos by Meda Kessler
OPENINGS | EXPANSIONS
Dayne’s Craft Barbecue expands service
One of the best things to happen in the 107 this spring is Dayne and Ashley Weaver expanding weekend hours to include Friday and Sunday. (Sometimes our dance card is a little too full on Saturdays.) They’re open 11 a.m. until sellout, which happens early afternoon. Preorder for Saturday pickup is highly recommended, as is arriving early — even on Friday and Sunday — as items such as the sliced brisket go quickly. The ’cue and sides are top notch; don’t skip the sausage, especially the spicy havarti-jalapeno. The location inside Lola’s Trailer Park is perfect, too, with lots of outdoor seating and big shade trees. Order at the trailer, grab a beer from Lola’s outdoor bar, and wait for Dayne’s friendly staff to bring over your tray. Sauce and condiments are self-serve from a table near the covered patio.
2735 W. 5th St., 682-472-0181, daynescraftbarbecue.com
Delucca Gaucho Pizza & Wine
The concept is much the same as a Brazilian steakhouse, only with slices of wood-fired pizza. A prix fixe tasting menu includes lobster bisque, a salad and an appetizer. Then choose your pizza favorites from a menu that includes Turkish lamb and truffle oil-topped cheese along with classics such as margherita and pepperoni. Your server brings fresh slices to your table as needed. (Gluten-free and vegan options are available.) We like the nicely priced happy hour menu available 4:30-6 p.m. weekdays and served only at the bar. Get a whole personal pizza and appetizer (limited options) and $5 wine or cocktail. Reservations are highly recommended, even at the bar; we opt for seats on the spacious patio when possible.
3010 S. Hulen St., 682-224-5194, delucca.com/location/fort-worth
After lots of experimentation, chef Hans Peter Muller has expanded his menu at Swiss Pastry Shop to include gluten-free biscuits, including some used for breakfast sandwiches with sausage patties, and a very moist sweet potato pound cake. The biscuits are not too dense or crumbly, and they freeze nicely. Muller likes to remind customers that his is not a wheat-free kitchen, but that he does take steps to make his products as “clean” as possible.
3936 W. Vickery Blvd., 817-732-5661, swisspastryonline.com
New owners, new name, new look for Craftwork Coffee Co.
After five years on the bricks, Craftwork Coffee Co. transitions to a new name and new owners on April 12. Craftwork is focusing more on its hospitality bars inside apartment complexes, but leaves the cafes in good hands, selling its Camp Bowie Boulevard location and coworking space and Magnolia Avenue shop to longtime employees. Josh Tyer and wife Mary Hanna are rebranding the Camp Bowie store as Fort Worth Coffee Co. (Former director of operations Katherine Morris is the new owner of the Magnolia shop, which will become Cherry Coffee.) Josh has been a barista since the 2016 opening and the head roaster (the couple also have purchased Craftwork’s roasting business, which is located off University/White Settlement). Passionate about the business of making and serving coffee, Josh aims to continue Craftwork’s mission of creating a community for guests and staff. The couple plan to make a few cosmetic changes to the shop and the coworking space, as well as add more seating inside and out. Both will be on-site, and Josh says to look for him behind the bar alongside their employees. He’ll continue to source and roast beans, but also offer a menu of guest roasters.
4731 Camp Bowie Blvd., 817-737-4169
Meet the owners The Tyers live in the River Oaks neighborhood with son Paul and Macie, a boxer mix they adopted from the Humane Society of North Texas. Both native Texans, they met while in college at Tarleton State University in Stephenville; Josh was studying environmental engineering and Mary Hanna was an animal science major. He graduated ahead of her, but opted to stay in Stephenville while she completed school. “I got a job at a coffee shop even though I told them I didn’t even drink coffee,” says Josh. But travels to coffee-rich countries such as Thailand and on-the-job experience led to Josh’s eventual transition from engineer to the world of pour-overs and single-origin beans. Mary Hanna eventually went to work for REI and helped open its Waterside store in Fort Worth. An accomplished rock climber, she loves all things about the outdoors, as does Josh. They own a 26-foot sailboat, mountain bikes and love to adventure travel when possible.
Coffee talk Like a sommelier, Josh has developed his palate over the years. His preferred drink is a pour-over; his everyday coffee typically is Colombian. While he prefers to drink it black, of course, he also enjoys an after-dinner cup of a medium-roast coffee with cream and sugar. And K-Cups? “They’re here to stay,” says Josh.
The Saint is back After being closed for a year, Saint-Emilion owner Bernard Tronche has reopened the beloved French bistro for a three-course prix fixe dinner ($50) Thursday-Sunday; a la carte appetizers also are available, as are dessert and, of course, wine. Online reservations required; seating is limited.
3617 W. 7th St., 817-737-2781, saint-emilionrestaurant.com
Taco Heads remodels and expands
The Montgomery Street location of Taco Heads is temporarily closed, as it’s getting a major face-lift inside and out. Hint: No more rental tent when it’s too hot or too cold. Expect to-go service to return in early April and the covered patio to follow a few weeks later. Owner Sarah Castillo also is expanding to the Northside (a block south of Exchange Avenue), with a new shop opening there this spring. Her Stockyards/Mule Alley project, the cocktails/tapas bar called Sidesaddle Saloon, should be open by the time you read this.
1812 Montgomery St.; new location, 2341 N. Main St.; tacoheads.com Sidesaddle Saloon, 122 E. Exchange Ave., Suite 240; instagram.com/sidesaddlesaloon
Magnolia Wine Bar: New look, new options, new name
The name is new, but the Magnolia Wine Bar isn’t. It’s been almost two years since husband-wife proprietors Marty and Marilyn Englander (who reside in the 107) purchased Kent & Co. on Magnolia Avenue. “We want enjoying great wine to be affordable and relaxed,” says Marty. “We keep prices reasonable to encourage guests to try something new.” Out of roughly 200 wines offered on the list, about half are available by the glass. The retail operation, which the Englanders said saved the business during the pandemic slowdown, continues to be popular. Katrina Carpenter of Carpenter’s Cafe is in charge of a food truck parked outside the expanded patio area formerly used for valet parking. She’ll offer Asian tacos and other shareable items. Floral murals by local artist Kristen Soble reflect the magnolia theme; one quotes a song lyric by famous Fort Worth crooner Leon Bridges, with whom the Englanders worked on a fundraiser for local businesses.
1101 W. Magnolia Ave., 817-632-6070, themagnoliafw.com
New faces on Locke Block: Mariachi’s Dine-In and Pizza Verde
When co-owners Ashley Miller and Angel Fuentes opened Mariachi’s Dine-In from a tiny kitchen at the back of a well-worn convenience store in 2018, they aimed to make homestyle Mexican specialties accessible. Miller, the vegetarian, found in chef Fuentes someone whose talent makes meatless tacos and quesadillas appealing even to dedicated carnivores. The duo’s classic and vegan renditions of traditional street foods have proved successful, and the concept now moves to a Westside restaurant space long occupied by Mariposa’s Latin Kitchen (and briefly by FiVi’s Kitchen). “We’d been looking for something larger, but the pandemic hit. But still, our business continued to grow,” says Miller, who at one time worked as a mixologist at Fireside Pies. “As soon as I saw this space was coming available, before it even went on the market, I put our hat in the ring. We are super excited.” There’s room for 98 guests, and they traded a matchbox-size kitchen for an ample one with a walk-in cooler. And along with plates that range from Baja “fish” tacos — made with crispy banana blossom, pickled red cabbage, roasted corn, cilantro, tomato and chipotle crema — to tortas stuffed with grilled carne asada or marinated pork, guests can enjoy Miller’s bartending talents. “We’ll do cocktails, margaritas and fun nonalcoholic beverages, too,” she says. Their future neighbor, Pizza Verde, a former pop-up venture offering only plant-based savory pies, is taking over the old Rocco’s spot a few doors down.
5724 Locke Ave., mariachisdinein.com
Zaap Kitchen Lao & Thai Street Eats opens in WestBend
This fast-casual eatery is a nice option for the 107, as Laotian food typically requires a drive to Haltom City or beyond. Try the Zaap combo, which includes one item from the Laotian Favorites Menu (we like the sausage and pork shoulder bites), sticky or jasmine rice and papaya salad. Servings are plentiful, and the food is fresh. There’s minimal seating available; Zaap is popular for its delivery/takeout business.
1621 River Run, 682-255-5752, zaapkitchen.com