In 1969, Baruch Schaked began making chocolate under the tutelage of his chocolatier father-in-law. Though his father-in-law had made a name for himself in Argentina, Baruch honed his confectionary craft across Europe, finally settling in the United States, where chocolate had been outlawed. Many years later, when he announced his intentions to retire from chocolate making, Baruch's son, Edgar, coaxed him into continuing the family legacy with a new shop, Schakolad Chocolate Factory.
In the years since, the business has flourished, bringing the Schaked clan one step closer to its ultimate goal: to replace the city’s manhole covers with chocolate discs. In the meantime, they craft handmade European-style confections that are made fresh each day.
Nestled among the wooden corrals and brick fa?ades of the historic Fort Worth Stockyards district, Cowtown Winery pairs meats and cheeses with red, white, semisweet, and dessert wines handcrafted by an in-house vintner. Amid shelves stocked with emerald rows of bottles, the winery?s tasting bar hosts daily samplings of premium wines such as the tart Silver Spur red and a pinot grigio with subtle aromas of apple, pear, and aged stetson hat. Live acoustic music on the weekends helps to inspire first-time winemakers as they consult with vintners to design custom labels and concoct up to 29 bottles of their own signature wine.
More than 325 bottles of international wine fill Zambrano Wine Cellar’s shelves and its climate-controlled wine cellar, arranged by chef, wine enthusiast, and owner Cef Zambrano. When not hobnobbing with celebrities such as Harrison Ford, Nolan Ryan, and Katie Couric, Zambrano coordinates a menu of bistro fare to harmonize with his library of wine selections, which received the Wine Spectator Award of Excellence in 2009. Zambrano presents updated takes on Mediterranean favorites, crafting small plates of escargot broiled in garlic butter and shallots, as well as four types of bruschetta topped with tomato, chicken, duck, or fillet tips. Diners can dive into shared nibbles with custom plates of international meats and cheeses or pizzas topped margherita-style or with signature spanish ham.
Zambrano’s prized glass wine cellar sits behind a smooth stone bar, inlaid with variegated amethyst that glows as it catches the light better than an outfielder with a magnifying glass. While perched at its high-backed leather banquettes, diners can sip from the 50-plus list of wines by the glass while gazing at a flat-screen TV in the corner or admiring the custom art on the dining room’s exposed-brick walls. In the front of the dining room, gauzy orange curtains frame sheets of sunlight that illuminate simple wooden tables, each adorned with a single flower that provides color and an amuse-bouche for hungrier guests. A sidewalk patio offers al fresco dining and bustling sights of Sundance Square.
Frontier Meats delivers succulent cuts of beef, bison, and wild boar directly to doors, safely ensconced in dry ice and styrofoam. Frontier?s beef is wet-aged in a refrigerated unit for 28 days, which slowly breaks down tough tissue and results in a more flavorful, tender cut of meat. Patrons looking to expand their meaty horizons can opt for wild-boar or buffalo products, both of which include packages of distinctive burgers. The Texas wild boar also comes as a frenched rack, which dazzles tabletops with its distinctive presentation and nutty taste. Everything is shrink-wrap packed with Cryovac technology, which keeps each protein molecule fresh and allows beef to continue wet-aging in the package.
Brenden "Stubby" Stubblefield, a Texas Tech University scholar studying animal science, bent his head intently over his latest lab project: home-brewed beer. After an exercise with yeast sparked Stubblefield's interest, he taught himself to brew beer to suit his own tastes. As he learned, he noticed the lack of a home-brewing supply store in the area and resolved to start his own with the help of his family. Stubblefield says that he loves his career because, "I get to talk about beer all day. It's like a dream job to me." Other staff members are just as passionate about home brewing, talking with customers and answering questions about introductory home-brewing kits and high-end brewing equipment, some of which the store manufactures.
In addition to equipment, the store carries brewing ingredients such as hops, grains, and a selection of 85 different malts in its own room. Stubblefield also leads home-brewing classes complete with a brief history of beer and a brewing demonstration for students who wish to buy their own supplies and continue the beer-creation process at home. Along with bolstering beer-brewing hobbies, Stubby's Texas Brewing carries hundreds of wine kits and high-end wine making equipment for those who prefer to grapes over grains.