Tastemakers Forth Worth 2017
Tasting Notes

Dallas-Fort Worth foodies toast best of the best at annual Tastemaker Awards

DFW foodies toast best of the best at annual Tastemaker Awards

Robyn Gilliam, Rachel Collins
Robyn Gilliam, Rachel Collins Photo by WJNPHOTO
Lacy Cook, Joshua Friend
Lacy Cook, Joshua Friend Photo by WJNPHOTO
Karen Soltero, David Nix, Alika Ray
Karen Soltero, David Nix, Alika Ray Photo by WJNPHOTO
Lynsi Christiansen, Katy Anderson, Anna Tressler
Lynsi Christiansen, Katy Anderson, Anna Tressler Photo by WJNPHOTO
Neve Winspeare, Dale WInspeare
Neve Winspeare, Dale Winspeare Photo by WJNPHOTO
Vodi Cook, Christina Thompson
Vodi Cook, Christina Thompson Photo by WJNPHOTO
Kate O’Donnell, Christina Sedan
Kate O’Donnell, Christina Sedan Photo by WJNPHOTO
Landon Ledford, Kaitlyn Howell
Landon Ledford, Kaitlyn Howell Photo by WJNPHOTO
Griffin Emerson, Lea Flamming
Griffin Emerson, Lea Flamming Photo by WJNPHOTO
Winners at Tastemakers 2017
Pie Tap Pizza Workshop + Bar took home the award for Best New Restaurant. Photo by WJNPHOTO
Erica Allen, Taylor McNeill, Jessica Nwasike
Erica Allen, Taylor McNeill, Jessica Nwasike Photo by WJNPHOTO
Guests at Tastemakers 2017
Guests mingle at Tastemaker Awards 2017. Photo by WJNPHOTO
Drink selections at Tastemakers 2017
Beer options included offerings from Deep Ellum Brewing, 11 Below Brewing, and Alaskan Brewing Company. Photo by WJNPHOTO
Mirador team
Josh Sutcliff (right) of Mirador won the award for Rising Star Chef. Photo by WJNPHOTO
Charlie Moore, Hannah Constantine
Charlie Moore, Hannah Constantine Photo by WJNPHOTO
Evan Johnson, Carolanne Treadwell
Evan Johnson, Carolanne Treadwell Photo by WJNPHOTO
Madai, strawberry boshi, and green tomato from Uchi
Sample bites included madai, strawberry boshi, and green tomato from Uchi. Photo by WJNPHOTO
Perla Caston, Yana Kohut
Perla Caston, Yana Kohut Photo by WJNPHOTO
Ford Santa Maria, Leah Santa Marie
Ford Santa Maria, Leah Santa Marie Photo by WJNPHOTO
Daniel Forsythe, Martin Arista
Daniel Forsythe, Martin Arista Photo by WJNPHOTO
Neil Atlin, Kristen Bell
Neil Atlin, Kristen Bell Photo by WJNPHOTO
Armmoury D. E. team
Armoury D.E. took home the award for Bar of the Year. Photo by WJNPHOTO
The Slow Bone team
Slow Bone won for Best Fried Chicken. Photo by WJNPHOTO
Kung Pao Lobster Roll from Nick & Sam's Steakhouse
Kung Pao Lobster Rolls from Nick & Sam's Steakhouse. Photo by WJNPHOTO
Guests getting their nails done at MiniLuxe
Guests were pampered with manicures from MiniLuxe. Photo by WJNPHOTO
Robyn Gilliam, Rachel Collins
Lacy Cook, Joshua Friend
Karen Soltero, David Nix, Alika Ray
Lynsi Christiansen, Katy Anderson, Anna Tressler
Neve Winspeare, Dale WInspeare
Vodi Cook, Christina Thompson
Kate O’Donnell, Christina Sedan
Landon Ledford, Kaitlyn Howell
Griffin Emerson, Lea Flamming
Winners at Tastemakers 2017
Erica Allen, Taylor McNeill, Jessica Nwasike
Guests at Tastemakers 2017
Drink selections at Tastemakers 2017
Mirador team
Charlie Moore, Hannah Constantine
Evan Johnson, Carolanne Treadwell
Madai, strawberry boshi, and green tomato from Uchi
Perla Caston, Yana Kohut
Ford Santa Maria, Leah Santa Marie
Daniel Forsythe, Martin Arista
Neil Atlin, Kristen Bell
Armmoury D. E. team
The Slow Bone team
Kung Pao Lobster Roll from Nick & Sam's Steakhouse
Guests getting their nails done at MiniLuxe

Last night was an evening of feasting and toasting, as hundreds of hungry fans streamed into Sixty Five Hundred in Dallas for the fourth annual CultureMap Tastemaker Awards, the grand finale of our annual program celebrating the best in local food and drink. We honored nominees in all categories of food and beverage, from best chefs to the best restaurants in Dallas-Fort Worth.

This year’s event featured tasty bites from 30(!) area restaurants, showcasing the best in local dining right now. Sample bites included Kung Pao Lobster Rolls from Nick & Sam’s Steakhouse; Love Me Tenders (peanut butter and jelly fried chicken on a bed of cheesy grits) from Dot’s Hop House and Cocktail Courtyard; sriracha-spiked deviled eggs and smoked and fried Chicken Lollipop drumsticks from Street’s Fine Chicken; and confit quail over strawberry-rhubarb jam and goat cheese grit cake from Grayson Social. Is your mouth watering yet?

On the cocktail front, guests had their choice of beer (courtesy of Deep Ellum Brewing, 11 Below Brewing, and Alaskan Brewing Company); wine from Sonoma Cutrer; or five signature cocktails, including a Woodford Rye Old Fashioned with Woodford Reserve rye, vanilla syrup, and Woodford Reserve barrel-aged spiced cherry bitters, and the Texas Mule with Finlandia vodka, Topo Chico, lemon juice, and Liber & Co.’s fiery ginger syrup and Texas grapefruit shrub.

Meanwhile, Bartender of the Year nominees Eddie “Lucky” Campbell, Kyle Hilla, and Michael Martenson mixed up original cocktail samples in the Bartender Showcase, where attendees showed their love by voting for their favorite libations with golden coins.

Between mixing, mingling, and noshing, guests were pampered with manicures by MiniLuxe before heading over to strike a pose at the zany SmileBooth. Those with a sweet tooth satisfied their cravings with freshly made (or should we say spun?) cotton candy by Cottonsmith, as well as treats by Sprinkles and Sugarfina. Ice cream lovers couldn’t help but rave about the The Joule’s dark chocolate hazelnut soft-serve ice cream with olive oil and a candied baguette.

Nominees received the star treatment at the Korbel Lounge, where celebratory glasses of champagne and swag bags filled with everything from Jack Black skincare to Krave jewelry and gift cards from Uchi, Top Knot, Soul Cycle, and more were on offer. 

But this party wasn't just about the eating and drinking — we had some awards to present. Celebrity chef emcee Tim Love revealed this year's winners to an enthusiastic crowd, who cheered on both Fort Worth and Dallas entrants alike. Special thanks to judges Alison Morse, Amy and Andrew Savoie, Chad Solomon and Christy Pope, Lindsey and Jacob Sloan, Jeffrey Gregory, John Tesar, Kirstyn Brewer, Kyle Hilla, Ladd Biro, Malcolm Mayhew, Marlene Duke, Nick Rallo, and Tim Love, who helped us determine who would take home the titles.

Spotted in the crowd were Daniel Forsythe, Martin AristaLauren Clapper, Nick Fragnito, Marcus Eerndt, Nicole SandersonVodi Cook, Christina ThompsonTrinda Wood, Linda SnorinaRosa Williams, Todd HowardMelissa Becker, Travis Lyon, and Hailey Finucane.

Ten percent of ticket sales from the event are being donated to Trigger's Toys, which is dedicated to reducing the financial and emotional stress on chronically ill children and their families. 

Now go read about all the winners, and we'll see you next year.