The Big Texan Steak Challenge Gauntlet Has Been Thrown

Texans have been handed their pride in a doggy bag by a Nebraska woman named Molly "Bottomless Pit" Schuyler. Over the Memorial Day weekend, the professional competitive eater traveled to Amarillo's Big Texan steakhouse where she took on the Big Texan Steak Challenge. Eaters have to consume the entire meal—shrimp cocktail, a baked potato, a salad, a roll (with butter) and a 72-ounce steak—in less than one hour.

Texas Wine of the Month: Hilmy Cellars Saignée of Sangiovese 2013

This wine, by Hilmy Cellars, is called Saignée of Sangiovese, named for its production method. Saignée is a by-product of red winemaking. During the fermentation of a red wine, about ten percent of the juice is bled off. This process leaves a higher ratio of skin contact on the remaining juice, making the resulting red wine richer and bolder. The leftover bled wine or “Saignée” is then fermented into rosé.

Lanna Thai

As the only area restaurant dedicated solely to Thai food, Lanna shoulders high expectations from local devotees of the cuisine. We found the entrées to be hit or miss. The curry and coconut milk of the massaman curry, for instance, was pleasant with a slight sweetness, but the “medium heat” we requested resulted in no heat at all, and the added chicken was on the dry side. The green curry sauce of the Tornado Shrimp offered much more flavor, vegetables that were fresh and crisp, and a welcome touch of spice. (5/14)

Uptown/Top Ranking

One of the most exciting new bars in Texas is Wonderland, from the creative mind of Austin barman Jason Stevens. Stevens’s impressive résumé includes a long stint heading up the bar program at chef David Bull’s acclaimed Congress restaurant, and the same team is behind this latest venture. 

Texas Dreamin’

Like a scene from an old western, the streets of big Texas cities are littered with the bleached bones of famous restaurants from afar. Their owners thought they would open here to thunderous applause, only to discover that cracking the Texas code is harder than it seems. Remember Craft, BLT Steak, and Charlie Palmer, in Dallas? Or Bank and Katsuya, in Houston? What about Coyote Cafe, in Austin? The longest-lived, Tom Colicchio’s Craft, lasted only six years.

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