Dallas’ 10 most popular food stories in 2020
The most popular food stories written by the Dallas Morning News food reporters in 2020 were often explanatory articles about food during the coronavirus pandemic. We’ve consulted doctors about what’s safe in bars and restaurants, and we’ve explained how (masked) chefs would feed us in a year of only eating.
But do you know what we wrote about? Queso and stupid dogs. Torchy’s Tacos announced they would start selling their queso in grocery stores and wow, we needed that. And the Fletcher’s family announced that they would be selling trite dogs at Golden Chick after the State Fair of Texas was canceled. We needed that too.
It’s been a tough year for chefs, bartenders, and waiters, and it’s been tough for their customers too. Here’s a look at the food stories you devoured in 2020.
See you in 2021.
We asked 3 doctors: Would you eat in a restaurant now?
Queso Beso was closed in downtown Dallas when we went for a walk through March 16, 2020. (It has since reopened.) Restaurants across town have temporarily or permanently closed during the coronavirus pandemic.(Smiley N. Pool / Employee Photographer)
Our favorite restaurant story of the year was published on June 30th, shortly after bars closed for the second time during the coronavirus pandemic. The restaurants stayed open, but consumers were at odds and confused: what is safe? Can i dine inside? How about outdoors Is it okay to take away? Some of the answers to these questions may seem obvious to us now, but the rules were much more confusing six months ago.
“Neither of us knew anything about this virus until we are in the moment and keep studying and learning about it,” said Dr. Erin Carlson, Associate Clinical Professor and Director of Public Health Programs at UT-Arlington College of Nursing and Health Innovation. “This puts restaurants in a particularly precarious place. You are so responsible for health and safety, and yet we don’t know how best to protect health and safety. “The three doctors interviewed for this story helped bring clarity to the consumers concerned.
A similar story: “We asked 3 Texas doctors: Would you go to a bar in Dallas now?” was also one of our favorite food stories.
Allen Mi Cocina’s grated cheese incident goes viral
Oh, you didn’t forget Shredded Cheese Wife, did you? She is a living legend in all. Brandi Addison’s story about the incident at a local restaurant was the cheesy story of posting on social media about slow service at Mi Cocina. Man complains that woman needs grated cheese on her fajitas. She needs it. Man complains online: “This is the only way she can eat fajitas.”
Highland Park Cafeteria, Five Sixty in Reunion Tower, and other high profile restaurants nearby
In May, Jeremy Hallock’s story, “Over 10 North Texas Restaurants and Nightclubs That Have Closed Permanently” was difficult to read. So many restaurants have closed in such a short time. It was the first major run of major restaurant closings during the coronavirus pandemic. Of course it wasn’t the last.
“Oh my god huh?”: Dallas area restaurants are responding to Governor Abbott’s plan
Claire Ballor’s story in late April captured a bizarre moment: restaurant owners were shocked to learn they could reopen their restaurants. The reaction from Parigi owner Janice Provost – “Oh my god, what?” – was unforgettable.
Luby’s and Fuddruckers announce liquidation plans
You didn’t like the news that Luby’s and Fuddruckers have approved a plan to liquidate both restaurants.(Juan Figueroa / employee photographer)
No, not the Lu Ann record from Luby’s! No, not the Squirty Nacho cheese from Fuddruckers!
Dallasites were emotional about the news that Luby’s and Fuddruckers may not live forever. Despite the liquidation announcement, some restaurants will remain open for the time being. We’re not sure yet what 2021 will bring for these two restaurant brands.
Texas Restaurant Promise describes how businesses reopen
The story of Jesus Jimenez gave details of how restaurants in Texas could reopen with a focus on health and safety. Think back to April 2020 when we all had so many questions about COVID-19. The story helped explain what restaurants should do to get back into business.
After 87,000 turkeys explode in the fire, Greenberg will be closed for the holiday season
Exploding Turkeys: This may always be something you want to click on. The famous Tyler Company – the place where I get my Thanksgiving turkey every year – got a terrible stroke of luck when a fire broke out in one of their buildings a few weeks before their busiest season. They have closed the facility completely and will start over next year.
The take-away restaurant increases with on-site orders
2020 was the year we learned to appreciate restaurants in a whole new way. This story by Amanda Albee explained takeaway initiatives in Dallas – Ways to Help Firms in Trouble.
Torchy’s Tacos’ Queso is now sold in grocery stores
The famous Queso from Torchy’s Tacos is now available at Whole Foods.(Ryan Michalesko / employee photographer)
Can I choose a favorite story from this list? I was thrilled to see that consumers cared a lot when Torchy’s Tacos announced it would be selling its Green Chile Queso in stores. Many of you went out to find it the second the news came and many of you found that Whole Foods was slow to stock the shelves. I was told the #quesoshortage has been fixed.
For the first time ever, Fletcher’s will sell stupid dogs through fast food
No Texas State Fair? No problem: Fletcher has teamed up with Golden Chick to sell stupid dogs this fall. Consumers were crazy about them. They sold nearly 500,000 stupid dogs, almost the number Fletcher’s sells at the State Fair in 24 days. It was a happy turn in a bad year. We needed it, didn’t we? Jim Stevens, President of Golden Chick, called it “the best partnership and promotion we’ve had in the brand’s history”.
For more food news, follow Sarah Blaskovich on Twitter @sblaskovich.