This little French bistro is a Bishop Arts District favorite, inspiring crowds with a Saturday and Sunday brunch and giving off a quaint, slightly hidden vibe. Billing itself as a neighborhood bistro, Boulevardier’s menu is both French-inspired and Dallas-honed, with a tremendous selection of homemade goodies, fresh oysters and wonderful bouillabaisse. A wine list covers more than 120 bottles, while meatier menu mainstays include charcuterie plates, grilled grass-fed hamburgers and a crispy duck pappardelle. The space’s casual vibe translates well to the décor, full with natural lighting and fatigued walls, hanging gilded mirrors and a tall shelf of bottles that display the day’s drinkable offerings.
Dan Gatlin is a bona fide pioneer in the field of Texas winemaking. His father owned a chain of convenience and wine and spirits stores, which meant Dan was closely attuned to the rise of winemaking in California in the 1970s. In 1981, Dan took a shot at spurring the same type of enterprise in Texas, opening a small vineyard that would one day grow into the successful Inwood Estates Vineyards. Today the winery produces red and white wines that take advantage of Texas's distinctive terroir, or soil, to produce complex flavors.
Vino 100 teases taste buds with a tempting menu of light Mediterranean appetizers designed to complement their collection of more than 100 wines. The Farmer's Trio dheese plate ($13) brings manchego sheep's-milk, dilled havarti cow's-milk, and soft chevrine goat's-milk cheeses together in a flavor combination as complex as a Rube Goldberg machine that solves rubik's cubes. Scott's Savory Bistro plate sates carnivores with a tantalizing combination of sopprasata italian sausage, double cream brie cheese, aged sharp cheddar, mixed olives, and a fresh-fruit garnish ($16). Though alcohol is not covered in this Groupon, the bistro lines its walls with limited-production and artisan wines, at least 100 of which are under $25 per bottle.
The Alcove’s name alone brings to mind a cozy nook where one can curl up with a book and perhaps a little something to drink, and that’s exactly what you’ll find at this Uptown wine bar/coffee shop. By day, it functions as a friendly espresso bar with comfy couches, free WiFi and fresh pastries; caffeine fiends will enjoy the extra kick of the Japanese-style cold brew. At night, settle in with a generously poured glass – or bottle – of one of the affordable, small-producer wines while you catch up with friends on the patio. Not much of a wine drinker? The Alcove also offers a whopping 75-plus different beer varieties, including plenty that are local and craft.
Under the tutelage of French winemaker Benjamin Calais, the experts at Calais Winery craft varietals using traditional French techniques. That's why the winery proudly proclaims itself "The French Winery of Texas," making La Cuvee d'Elme aged in French oak barrels and a Zinfandel-Sangiovese blend with a thick accent. Visitors can drop in for a wine tasting, during which they're invited to sample five wines from the current list. Those with a deeper curiosity about winemaking can enroll in classes that illuminate the process from grape to bottle.