Anthony Russo, a first-generation Italian, spent years in the kitchens of his parents and other Italian chefs learning authentic Italian recipes for sauces and pastas. He eventually drew on his experience kneading New York?style pizza to open his own chain of coal-fired pizza franchises. Exposed bricks surround the burning embers at the core of the oven, which bakes thin-crust specialty pizzas, such as escargot with pesto, alongside heart-healthy pies with fresh spinach and artichokes. After sliding out golden-crusted pizzas and singed fairy-tale witches, chefs fill ovens with calzones and flatbreads. A full wine list supplies bold cabernets and crisp pinot grigios.
The Tipsy Canvas first sprang into being in 2009. The founders wanted to create a new way for people to engage with art, even if they lacked experience. They found that step-by-step instruction from an artist and a glass of wine to loosen up gave people that opportunity. They now have three Texas studios where other artists follow their teaching example and help students recreate original works of art.
Mole sauce is traditionally made with fistfuls of dried poblano peppers and hints of chocolate. Drawing on recipes for time-tested Mexican cuisine such as this, cooks at Tequila Restaurant fill the kitchen with the clatter of pots and pans. Chimichangas and avocados stuffed with strips of beef sizzle in hot oil, and carne asada crackles against a skillet beneath slices of peppers and onions. Ranks of tequila bottles stand on a shelf behind the bar, waiting to fill margarita glasses or help write a cowboy ballad that is due the next day.