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Restaurant News

News Bites: Cambodian Cuisine in Grand Prairie and Cronuts in McKinney

SideDish’s weekly digest of need-to-know dining happenings in Dallas, fresh for the new year.
A raspberry cronut.
iStock / willhowecreative

Welcome back to SideDish’s weekly dispatch of need-to-know News Bites, from quiet closures to opening updates and everything in between, including coronavirus-related intel. Hello and Happy New Year.

In Case You Missed It

SideDish started off the year with a short recap of some bigger food news that flew under most radars during the holiday break. Read up on the dining news you might’ve slept on during your holiday hibernation (like the end of Macellaio, although Oak Cliff Bread is incorporating some of its salumi into its offering this weekend).

A Lot of Taco News to Kick Off the New Year

Before we get to 2021 news, here’s a quick look at the loss of Taco Stop in 2020, one of many closures last year. As pointed out by Texas Monthly taco editor José Ralat, the New York Times included the Dallas taco joint in a restaurant memoriam of sorts. Jumping forward to this year, Taco Diner closed two locations in Irving and another in Fort Worth, but its two Dallas spots remain open for now. While a reason wasn’t supplied to the Dallas Morning News, I don’t think we’re done seeing coronavirus-related restaurant closures just yet. The recent Deep Ellum arrival, Basic Taco, has temporarily closed due to COVID and some remodeling, per an Instagram post. (Its sister cocktail bar next door, Yellow Rosa, seems to be chugging along just fine.) Support your local taquerias!

Petra and the Beast Looks to Comforting Hungarian Fare

The Old East Dallas house of fine dining has a new curbside, family-style meal for Thursday, Friday, and Sunday, this time serving up winter-appropriate food from Hungary, from goulash made with A Bar N Ranch beef to rustic dumplings called nodekli to rigójancsi, a chocolate spongecake with a poppy seed crumb. Cold weather comfort food at its literal finest. Peep the menu and ordering process here.

Three New Restaurants Arrive in Grand Prairie

Grand Prairie’s Asia Times Square welcomes three new places to eat and drink: Apsara Thai and Cambodian, Sakari Ramen, and Meccha Matcha. While a plethora of Asian cuisines pepper much of North Texas, Cambodian food has yet to proliferate. The arrival of Aspara hopefully points to a promising uptick of South Asian flavors in the region. Joseph Be, the owner of all three, told the Dallas Morning News that he doesn’t know of any other Cambodian eateries in the area, save for a couple in Lewisville and Rockwall. On SideDish we’ve covered Kamp Fire, Kevin Top’s Cambodian street food pop-up. It has employed a wait-and-see approach when it comes to opening a proper brick and mortar. Who can blame him post-2020? Still, I’m excited about what may become more frequently seen in the Dallas area. Here’s to more lemongrass-suffused skewers and prahok khtiss (pork dip) in 2021!

Oh, May 2021 Bring Us All the Pastries We Need and Deserve

Starting with Cremcrittos Gelato & Pastry. I saw images of lush-looking laminated pastries on the Asian Grub Facebook group not mere days ago. Now food news sleuth Teresa Gubbins at CultureMap has the word on this McKinney patisserie. It’s opened by brothers Mike and Young Yim, the latter of whom studied at The French Pastry School in Chicago and most recently was the pastry chef at the Ritz-Carlton here in Dallas. The menu at Cremcrittos is promising pastry classics like the chocolate eclair and untraditional mashups such as the cronut.

The Saga of the Fletcher Corny Dog Name Is Over

A whole year ago, two Fletcher family members who splintered off to start their own corny dog business (CornDog With No Name) found themselves battling over the Fletcher name. Now, reports the Dallas Morning News, “they’re heading into the new year having called a truce” after having spent much of 2020 in legal dispute over trademarks. Despite the ongoing lawsuit, both Fletcher Corny Dog and CornDog With No Name doled out the favorite handheld snack in 2020 through roving pop-ups and getting the taste of the State Fair to the hungry masses.

Flying Saucer Said Goodbye at the End of 2020

The 25-year-old Addison beer haven closed on December 31. Owner Shannon Wynne told DMN that the lease was up and he wasn’t renewing.