Lonestar Taps and Caps in Lewisville is Open and Filling Crowlers (Yes, Crowlers)

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All photos by Kelly Dearmore
The tap wall at Lonestar Taps and Caps with its motto painted at the top.
Since 2006, a Father-Son duo has helped give the suburbs north of Dallas a true beer-nerd clubhouse in the form of Lonestar Beverages in Carrollton. But as of the past week, Sam and Rick Ali have added a seductive new element to craft-beer loving here in the Dallas-area as Lonestar Taps and Caps, a long-time dream of the Ali's is now open and already hopping. Until the soft-opening back on December 5, possessors of empty growlers had to choose between a well-meaning but meager selection from Whole Foods in Addison, or trek down to Lakewood Growler or Craft and Growler in Expo Park to fill up on to-go, draft-style sexiness.

Sitting on the Southeast corner of the Sam Rayburn Tollway/State Highway 121 and Josey Lane, just inside Lewisville's city limits, bordering Carrollton and The Colony, the 1,800 square foot Taps and Caps is quite the destination for hop-heads, stout-snobs, and porter-pickers.

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Parliament's Gin Fizz: So Good You Won't Mind Everyone Telling You It Looks Dickish

Categories: Drinking

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Amy McCarthy
So delicious that it's NSFW.
I have an almost magnetic attraction to dishes and drinks that are fussy. Call it a natural predisposition toward being high-maintenance. If it requires some kind of complicated technique or a bunch of painstaking work to make it happen, I want to try it. Unfortunately, because the things that are best in this world take a lot of time, I often end up loving my highly-detailed discoveries, which makes me the asshole who makes the bartenders at Parliament shake up several Ramos gin fizzes every time I stop by.

We briefly mentioned this cocktail in our list of 2014's best cocktails, but the Ramos gin fizz is worth more digital ink than just a quick blurb. There are good cocktails, and then there are those that make you realize that you just can't go back to drinking bad booze anymore. Even when you've got only $10 left in your pocket, you're still going to have an overwhelming urge to take the bus down to Parliament and spend it all on just one more fizz.

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Moonshine Is Invading Dallas Bars

Categories: Drinking

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Stonedeck
Jars of moonshine behind the bar at Stonedeck. The author especially recognized the second jar from the left.
When I was in college, moonshine was hardly a trendy thing; the backwoods spirit distilled from a corn mash was an all out ass-kicker that could quickly put you down. One of my friends returned to classes each fall with a gallon jar of maraschino cherries whose red liquid had been swapped out with a measure of this devil-spirit. We'd eat cherries like beer nuts till our stomachs burned like fire.

I'd also seen moonshine at weddings and other celebrations. It was typically passed around in a Ball jar that had previously been used to put up a surplus of summer tomatoes. The first sip of moonshine burned your mouth, your throat and all the way down to your center. If you tried to breathe, it turned into napalm in your nose. And for me, it never gave up until I did. Moonshine kept up the burn for each and every sip until I wrote it off altogether a few years later.

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CBD Provisions' "Sherry Meads a Drink" Cocktail Is Smooth, Sweet and Served Over "Sonic Ice"

Categories: Drinking

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Amy McCarthy
Sherry meads a drink? No, YOU mead a drink.
I know nothing about sherry, except that it got that guy in Edgar Allan Poe's The Cask of Amontillado in some serious trouble. As such, I don't make a habit of ordering it on its own, or choosing a cocktail with sherry as the main ingredient. But thanks to the craft cocktail revolution, the spirit that had been relegated to the back of our kitchen pantries as cooking wine is starting to see a resurgence.

Despite my ignorance, sherry has rapidly cropped up across cocktail menus as a component that can add a touch of smoothness and sophistication to an otherwise spirit-forward or strongly-flavored cocktail. Not coincidentally, I was also sure that a few of CBD Provisions' Sherry Meads a Drink cocktails would infuse my broke ass with enough smoothness and sophistication to make it look like I actually belong in the Joule Hotel.

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Tacos and Tequila Is Now Serving Hangovers and Hangover Cures in Uptown

Categories: Drinking, Tacos

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Cody Neathery
Either the first T or the second T, depending on how you rank your Ts.
Nestled between Crush Craft Thai and a liquor store, and across the street from Dee Lincoln Steak and Burger Bar, is the newly opened TnT Tacos and Tequila. The Austin-based restaurant comes from the same group that birthed the Blue Mesa chain. The polished industrial style of the interior delivers a sleek laid back vibe with an airy downstairs patio as well as a rooftop bar that gives a mixed view of Uptown and downtown. Once the upstairs bar is complete and the weather is right, there will be no shortage of V necks for as far as the eyes can see.

If you're going to have "Tequila" in your restaurant name, you better bring your A game. TnT does. Narrowed down to three categories of tequila (Blanco, Reposado, and Anejo), their menu is loaded with more than 100 tequilas for you to challenge your liver on any given day. There are even a handful of premiums to choose from.

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At Sundown at Granada, Winter Cocktails for a Jekyll-and-Hyde December in Texas

Categories: Drinking

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Steven Leggett
November in Dallas: You never know what you're gonna get. One day, you're leaving the house in cut-offs and flip-flops, wondering if the FOE pool is still open. A day later, warm weather seems a dim memory, as you trudge outside with a spatula to scrape frost off your windshield.

This November, we're seeing more of the latter than the former. Mercifully, the team at Sundown at Granada has just released a new fall-to-winter dinner and drink menu to complement the low temps and long midwinter nights.

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A Start-Up Called Minibar Will Soon Deliver Booze in Dallas

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via Minibar
ALERT: YOUR PHONE CAN MAKE BOOZE APPEAR AT YOUR DOOR
This time of year (and all others), there is great joy in drinking alone. The holidays are stressful, and there's nothing better than kicking back a few hot toddies while you figure out just exactly how you're supposed to afford Christmas gifts for everyone you know and rent at the same time, or whether or not your grandma is going to make a big fuss about you being single at the holidays (again).

Now, a new app-slash-delivery-service has plans to make it much easier for you to soothe away your worries with a little sauce in the privacy of your own home. Minibar, a small start-up that originated in New York City, has recently expanded to Chicago, San Francisco and, now, Dallas. SideDish reported last week that the company has been quietly operating in Dallas since October, delivering booze to lucky drunks "in the know."

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Proof + Pantry's I'm Rich Cocktail Will Make You Feel Like a Fat (Drunk) Cat

Categories: Drinking

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Amy McCarthy
I'm Rich, or at least I feel like I am.
Craft cocktails are like foie gras or caviar in that they inevitably make us feel fancier than we actually are. Every time you order that top-shelf gin or that herb-infused vodka, you're essentially making a statement that you, unlike the plebes who swill well spirits and cheap beer, actually know what good booze is, and can afford it. Whether or not you're actually part of the one percent, ordering cocktails at a place like Proof + Pantry will sure make you feel that way.

To sit at the bar at this One Arts Plaza restaurant is to learn about cocktails via osmosis. Each of the drink-slingers behind the bar are equally knowledgeable, dropping facts on you about the small-batch gin in your gimlet or the artisan bitters that were delicately misted over your glass. These are not discussions that one has in a dimly-lit dive over a bucket of Miller High Life.

See also: I Drank My First Negroni at Front Room Tavern, and It Went Down (Sort of) Smoothly

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Midnight Rambler Is Mixing Shots That Taste Like Pho In Their Crazy-Ass Cocktail Lab

Categories: Drinking

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Katy Roberston
A fucking champ, literally.

I am generally skeptical of any cocktail that a bartender describes as "savory." Drinks should not taste like dinner. That kind of sensory dissonance is fine for trying weird new foods, but getting drunk should be a much more pure pursuit. Even if I'm being interesting, the drinks that I'm ordering shouldn't confuse my brain into thinking it should be doing anything other than shutting the hell up for a few hours.

Which is why I was so surprised at how amped I was to try Midnight Rambler's Pho-King Champ, a $6 shot made with wheat vodka, Oloroso sherry and something called "aromatized beef stock." The decision to duck into the Joule's new speakeasy came after several high-ABV beers from another stop, something that that could explain my newly adventurous stance on extremely weird drinks.

The Pho-King Champ is served chilled and is garnished simply with a single leaf of cilantro. The similarities with the syrupy or strong, spirit-forward shots that you're used to end in that the Pho-King Champ is served in a glass and will promptly get you drunk. Everything else about this shot adds up to an odd but exciting drinking experience that few other cocktails can contend with.


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How to Make Fireball at Home, with Black Swan's Gabe Sanchez

Categories: Drinking

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The folks behind Fireball whiskey are in damage-control mode after European countries issued a recall. Food-grade propylene glycol is safe for consumption, according to the FDA. But that didn't stop Norway, Sweden and Finland from pulling their product from the shelves, as false rumors spread that Fireball is actually made with automobile fluids. (Industrial grade propylene glycol is used in some anti-freezes.)

For now, Fireball is still going down smoothly in the States, which has different standards for the amount of food grade propylene glycol allowed in products. But beware, Fireball fans, of Food Babe. She's attacked Kraft because of their use of artificial dyes, skewered Subway because their rolls were made from yoga mats, and even attacked Budweiser when they refused to release the ingredients in her beer. Food Babe, otherwise known as Vani Hari, has proven successful with the largest corporations; if she sets her sights on Fireball, all bets are off.

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