BEST VINTAGE/ANTIQUE FURNITURE | Collage
With a knockoff Eames chair on seemingly every corner, our long-running love affair with midcentury modern is in danger of waning. But that fire is swiftly rekindled every time we cross the threshold of Abby and Wlodek Malowanczyk’s 8,500-square-foot temple of iconic 20th-century design. When we walk among the couple’s cache of classics from the likes of Wegner, Nakashima, Juhl, and Jacobsen, we feel like we’re rubbing shoulders with the who’s who of the design cognoscenti. And that’s enough to put Collage at the top of our list for the second year running.
READERS’ PICK: BLUE PRINT
BEST FLORIST | Avant Garden
Event planner extraordinaire Todd Fiscus owns this airy Highland Park Village shop that has become the go-to, pop-in spot for lovely gifts and pretty petals. Maybe you think one florist is very much like another? Wrong! The team at Avant Garden’s mission is to re-create Belle Époque with a modern twist. That can mean anything from floating orchids to lush, grand arrangements, depending on the event or occasion.
READERS’ PICK: DR DELPHINIUM DESIGNS & EVENTS
BEST FRAMER | Debra Stevens Custom Framing
We love Debra Stevens and her museum-quality framing because she lets the art be the focus, not the frame. And she’s not afraid to take a stand. “In my opinion,” she says, “all photography should have a white mat or float on a white mat with a very simple frame.”
READERS’ PICK: ART FRAME EXPO
BEST MUSEUM | Modern Art Museum of Fort Worth
Perhaps one of the more undersung lecture programs in the DFW area is the Modern’s Tuesday Evenings series, which last spring featured artists such as Tim Rollins, Katie Paterson, Jill Magid, Gary Rough, Byron Kim, and Andrea Fraser and topics including new media and land art, art as collaborative social project, and LGBTQ love and sex in the 21st century. All this is set amid the museum’s exquisite and representative permanent collection that lives in one of the most magnificent buildings in the state. 3200 Darnell St., Fort Worth.
READERS’ PICK: DALLAS MUSEUM OF ART
BEST CHEESE SHOP | Scardello
Owners Karen and Rich Rogers’ zeal for all things cheese is apparent the second you enter their intimate shop. You are greeted by a case filled with 150 artisan and farmstead cheeses from the United States and Europe. Plus, they stock local producers such as Mozzarella Company, Latte Da, and Brazos Valley. They also offer samples, classes, regional tours, cured meats, sandwiches, and other locally produced delicacies.
READERS’ PICK: CENTRAL MARKET
BEST FISH MARKET | TJ’s Seafood Market
If you don’t know about TJ’s, you either don’t eat seafood or you live in the sea. In which case, someone at TJ’s will meet you soon. Family-owned since 1989, this little shop has become a mover and shaker in the local food scene thanks to Jon Alexis, the ubiquitous promoter of seafood. He shows up at grilling competitions, food festivals, and pop-up dinners with an ice chest full of fresh fish. He knows his stuff. You should know him.
READERS’ PICK: CENTRAL MARKET