Editor's note: As the year comes to a close, we look back at the 10 most popular restaurant and bar stories of 2018. These are the openings, closings, and newsy bits that Fort Worth readers gobbled up.
1. Fort Worth's favorite gas-station barbecue restaurant closes abruptly. BBQ on the Brazos, the critically acclaimed restaurant located inside a Texaco gas station in Cresson, shocked local barbecue fans when owners said it would close on July 11 due to lease issues. They vowed to reopen as soon as possible — and they made good on that promise. On November 6, the smokers fired back up in a permanent home just feet from its old location.
2. Where to drink in Fort Worth right now: 5 best new patios to sip and stay awhile. April brought spring sunshine, perfect for patio sips. For this edition of our monthly Where to Drink series, we featured five new patio options around town. Some offered picturesque views, others, great drink specials, and others, outdoor games intended for adults.
3. Where to eat in Fort Worth right now: 8 hottest new restaurants. Fort Worth's restaurant scene sizzled in August. So many new restaurants had opened in the past few months, we needed a list to keep track. But which were the hottest? So glad you asked. For our August edition of Where to Eat, we offered our guide to the eight hottest restaurants to open in and around Fort Worth.
4. 2 hip restaurants bite the bullet in Fort Worth's West 7th District. Not one but two Dallas concepts imported to Fort Worth's West 7th District closed their doors in January, one serving Mexican food and the other, coffee. TorTaco, a Mexican restaurant focused on tortas, tacos, bowls, and mezcal — which had won the prestigious CultureMap Tastemaker award for Best New Restaurant in 2017 — closed on January 22. Further east, Mudsmith, the coffeehouse located at 817 Matisse Dr. in the So7 development, closed on January 15. Owners of both shops said there was just not enough traffic through their doors to stay open.
5. Huge liquor store taps out of once-hot Fort Worth location. It was closing time for Goody Goody Liquor, which shut down its southwest Fort Worth location. The huge, decade-old shop at 4740 SW Loop 820 turned off the lights for good on March 31. The store's sales had slowed in recent years as surrounding areas shifted from "dry" to "wet" zones, owners said. No longer did residents in historically dry towns like Granbury and Weatherford need to travel to the Hulen area of Fort Worth to buy alcohol.
6. The 10 best restaurants in Fort Worth set a deliciously high standard. The 2018 CultureMap Tastemaker Awards, our annual event honoring the best in local food and drink, included awards to top chefs and restaurants and a party in April, emceed by Good Morning Texas host Jane McGarry. But before we partied, we took a closer look at the nominees for Fort Worth Restaurant of the Year.
7. Where to eat in Fort Worth right now: 7 best restaurants for brunch. There's dining out and then there's going to brunch — there is a difference. Brunch requires time — time to sit and sip on mimosas and Bloody Marys and gorge on fatty, indulgent foods. For our April installment of Where to Eat, we paid tribute to the most gluttonous meal of the day with seven brunch suggestions, either from brand-new restaurants or old favorites with new brunch dishes.
8. Best Fort Worth restaurants open Christmas Eve and Christmas Day in 2018. December was here, and Christmas was on the way. If plans included dining out, these restaurants were offering special meals for the holidays. Some took place on Christmas Day, some on Christmas Eve, and some on both days. This was our handy guide to restaurants serving festive Christmas holiday meals.
9. Fort Worth chicken and waffles restaurant snaps up TCU breakfast haunt. After seven years, the TCU area was losing a major weekday breakfast with the closure of the only Cafe Brazil in Fort Worth. But there was already a replacement in the wings: local mom-and-pop restaurant Taste-N-See Chicken and Waffles, which opened in the space June 9. Taste-N-See's specialty dish are thick, Belgian-style waffles made in house and topped with bone-in fried chicken wings or boneless tenders, then covered in various toppings, from blueberry syrup to chocolate chips.
10. New barbecue restaurant smokes up Wagyu brisket for Fort Worth. A promising new barbecue restaurant is slated to open in Fort Worth from a BBQ guy who takes the craft very seriously. The eponymous Derek Allan's Texas Barbecue will open at 1116 8th Ave., in the space once home to Paco + John's. The menu includes Wagyu brisket, beef ribs, pork ribs, as well as craft and draft beer. Derek Allan, who owns the concept with wife Brittany, says it will open in January 2019.