Dallas has few diversions other than eating, drinking and shopping.....and shopping does not interest us.
So we spend our time hopping from restaurant to restaurant and to every pub that we can find in search of the perfect meal and the perfect beer.

We randomly review restaurants and bars, dishes and beers at whim and give our brutally honest opinions of our findings. And while we concentrate on Dallas, we travel far and wide to sample cuisine from all regions of the country and beyond.

Friday, July 26, 2013

10 Best Hefeweisen Beers

I love thick, dark beers.  Heavy Porters, thick rich Belgian quads, flavorful Stouts ... mmmmmm.  But for the life of me I have trouble choking down a thick, heavy beer on a thick, hot summer day.  Pale Ales, IPAs, Saisons, and the ever so refreshing German style Hefeweisens are my summertime choices.  These unfiltered wheat beers often carry citrus and/or banana flavors which work well to cool your dry dusty throat.  Here are Rate Beer's top 10 Hefewiesen beers as voted by their readers for you to try.

1 Weihenstephaner Hefe Weissbier                                       99
2 Ayinger Bräu-Weisse                                                         97
3 Andechser Weissbier Hefetrüb                                           96
4 Franziskaner Hefe-Weissbier                                              95
5 Sierra Nevada Kellerweis Hefeweizen                                  95
6 Paulaner Hefe-Weissbier                                                    95
7 Schneider Georg Schneiders Wiesen Edel-Weisse                  95
8 Schneider Weisse Original                                                  95
9 Hacker-Pschorr (Hefe) Weisse                                            94
10 Maisels Weisse Original                                                     93

Sunday, July 21, 2013

The End of an Era

Ball Hickory Pit Bar-B-Que, McAlester, Oklahoma

Change is inevitable.  Some things we are able to expect to see the changes and we accept and acknowledge them.  Like for instance watching your children growing up.  They will not remain as drooling, incoherent bundles of joy, but there are times that they will come precariously close to that state as they learn the joys of the brew.  Other things we are unable to see that change and from our perspective they are unchanging.  We are comfortable with the feeling of permanence, like mountains for instance.  Unless you were one of the unlucky souls hiking on Mt. St. Helens when it erupted, whose last thoughts were probably "Damn, that is not supposed to happen".

Ball BBQ has been a mountain for me for many years.  As I travel north on one of my uncountable road trips I can be sure that I have a place to stop for lunch and be absolutely sure that I am going to have a magnificent plate of barbeque.  The unchanging quality of the food has made being on the road a little less stressful.  An oasis of quality in the crappy fast food desert.

Johnny Ball began his career as a butcher and opened his shop in 1970 with this brother Tommy as a meat market.  A few years later he started selling smoked meats to his appreciative clients and noticed that instead of taking their BBQ home with them they were lounging around in the parking lot devouring their loot on the spot.  Adding a few tables outside did little to alleviate the crux of barbeque junkies hanging out in the parking lot and so in 1974 they reinvented themselves and opened Ball Hickory Pit Bar-B-Que. 

I went to college (many years ago, don't ask) with one of Johnny and Bobbie's sons who bragged continuously about how good the barbeque was from the family.  Yeah right ... if I had a dollar for every BBQ joint that I have tried that someone raved about I could pay off my student loans.  So one day as I passed through on my way from somewhere to nowhere I stopped off on a whim and was immediately sorry that I had waited so long. 

After so many stops I have gotten to know the owners,  Johnny and Bobbie are like family and greet us like long lost friends every time we walk in the door.  And for one more week we and the hundreds of other BBQ junkies can expect that same greeting ...  only one more week, because next Saturday, July 27, 2013, Ball Hickory Pit Bar-B-Que will shutter it's doors.

Johnny and Tommy along with their wives Bobbie and Kay are retiring after over 40 years of continuous service.  Those of you who have worked in the food service industries know how physically and emotionally demanding serving the fickle public can be and can appreciate the wear and tear that 43 years can do.  I am so very happy for them all and wish them a glorious retirement, but for now, well, my mountain has turned into my Mount St. Helens.  This is not supposed to happen.

My friends, you have 4 days (Wednesday through Saturday) to make the trip 2.5 hours north and try some of the finest BBQ that you will ever try for the last time, or for the first time.  As for me I will be driving up Saturday to spend the day with some of the finest people that I know.

Ball Hickory Pit Bar-B-Que
319 W Shawnee Ave  
McAlester, OK 74501

Tuesday, July 16, 2013

Old Monk/Blackfriar Pub/Idle Rich Pub Belgian Independence Day Giveaways





Starting at 5pm a glass of Maredsous 6 on draught is $9, keep the glass. The glass is also available with Maredsous 8 or 10 bottle purchase. We have 150 of these with the state of Texas printed on the glass.



The Monk also has 150 of these limited edition "art" glasses. You can buy a glass full of Duvel Single for $9, you keep the glass. Also available with Duvel bottle purchase. This year's design, the 3rd annual installment of the art glass series, is by Brooklyn artist Mike Perry.

The Idle has one keg each of Ommegang's Belgian Independence Day 2012 and 2013 and glasses for both years to give away. We will tap the kegs Thursday at 5pm. Get a special edition Ommegang glass filled with with this rare Belgian beer for $9, you keep the glass.
These kegs will go fast. First come, first served.


We have received 150 limited edition glasses and will give them away on Thursday starting at 5pm.
You can receive a glass full of Duvel Single for $9, you keep the Special Edition glass. Also available with Duvel bottle purchase.
This year's design, the 3rd annual installment of the art glass series, is by Brooklyn artist Mike Perry.

Sunday, July 14, 2013

Cooking with Beer - Sea-Salt Peanut Buttter Brownie Bars

Sea-Salted Peanut Butter Brownie Bars

  • Meal: Dessert
  • Seasonality: Year Round
  • Difficulty: Easy
  • Serves: 6-8 brownies
  • Time: 15 minutes (can be cooled overnight)
  • Beer Style: Brown Ale
  • Beer: Hazelnut Brown Nectar
  • Brewery: Rogue Ales
Chocolate and stout is a classic combo, but these brownies from Cooking & Beer go one delicious step further with a creamy peanut butter frosting. The brilliant addition of a bit of sea salt makes the sweet flavors pop! Enjoy!


  • 1 cup unsalted butter, softened to room temperature, divided + 1 tablespoon
  • ½ cup white granulated sugar
  • ½ cup honey
  • 2 eggs
  • ¼ cup brown ale
  • 1 tablespoon pure vanilla extract + 1 teaspoon
  • ⅓ cup cocoa powder
  • ¾ cup all-purpose flour
  • ½ teaspoon fine sea salt
  • ¼ teaspoon baking powder
  • ¾ cup creamy peanut butter
  • 1 cup confectioner’s sugar
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • ½ teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 1 tablespoon heavy cream
  • 1 package (12 ounces) semi-sweet chocolate chips (optional)
  • coarse white sea salt for garnish


Preheat your oven to 375°F and line an 8×8 baking dish with parchment paper. Spray the parchment paper with a non stick spray and set aside.
In the bowl of your stand mixer, with paddle attachment fixer, cream together ½ cup of butter, sugar and honey. Add the eggs, one at a time, and mix to combine completely after each one. Add the beer and a tablespoon of vanilla extract. Beat until creamy and all ingredients are completely incorporate.
In a separate bowl, whisk together the cocoa powder, flour, fine sea salt and baking powder. In ½ cup increments, add the dry ingredient into the wet. Mix until completely combined.
Pour the brownie batter into your prepared dish and bake for about 30-35 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean. Remove from oven and let cool completely (about 1 hour).
Meanwhile, prepare your peanut butter filling. In the bowl of your stand mixer (with paddle attachment fixed) cream together the remaining ½ cup of softened butter and the peanut butter. Once smooth, slowly mix in the confectioners sugar until creamy and incorporated. Add in the cinnamon, nutmeg, and heavy cream.
Once the brownies have cooled, spread the peanut butter filling on top of the brownies (all the while leaving the brownies in the baking dish). Cover and refrigerate over night or until peanut butter has slightly hardened.
Once cooled and slightly hardened, remove from the refrigerator, and remove the parchment paper (along with the brownies) from the baking dish. Transfer to a cutting board. In a small dish, melt your semi-sweet chocolate chips along with a tablespoon of butter via the microwave oven. In increments of 30 seconds, stir in between each increment until all of the chips have melted.
Drizzle the brownies with the melted chocolate (optional) and shake some coarse sea salt on top. Cut the brownies into 1½ in x 1½ in squares and keep refrigerated or store at room temperature until ready to serve. Enjoy!

Wednesday, July 10, 2013

The Flying Saucer's Pints for Prostates

For the second year in a row, Flying Saucer Draught Emporium is partnering with Pints for Prostates to raise funds for prostate cancer awareness. I wanted to send you information to share with your readers who may be interested in participating. Last year, the campaign raised $20,000 across all of it locations in the Southeast. Now with 16 locations, the Saucer expects this year’s effort to bring in even more donations for the cause.
At 7 p.m. on Wednesdays in July, Flying Saucer’s “Brewery Night” will feature a different European classic beer with the brand’s signature logo glassware. All profits from glass purchases support the Pints for Prostates mission, and the campaign culminates with a drawing for a trip to Belgium, Holland and Germany through
So, go down to the Saucer, slam a few beers and delude yourself into thinking that it was all for charity.

Cook Hall Beer Dinner

Join Cook Hall and Four Corners Brewery for a five course beer dinner featuring craft beers and gastropub fare
WHAT:                After a successful inaugural beer dinner, Cook Hall will continue to host regular beer dinners with local craft brewers. On Friday, July 10, Four Corners Brewery will partner with Cook Hall’s Chef Rick Graff for a five course dinner. At the start of the evening, guests may enjoy passed radish toasts paired with Local Buzz Golden Ale. Courses include baby octopus salad with rosemary and olives paired with Paletero Pale Ale, pork belly sliders paired with El Chingon IPA, braised short rib with fried summer squash paired with Red’s Roja American Amber, and the stout beer sundae paired with Block Party Robust Porter for dessert. Tickets are $55 and reservations can be made by calling 214-397-4111. Complimentary valet is offered. 
WHEN:                Friday, July 19, 2013
                                7 p.m.  
COST:                  $55 per person
Call                      214-397-4111 for reservations.
WHERE:             Cook Hall
                                2440 Victory Lane
                                Dallas, Texas 75219

Monday, July 8, 2013

Belgian Beer Week 2013 - Take 2

And the Flying Saucer follows right behind with their own salvo! 

July 22-26th...A Week Long celebration of Belgian Ales!

Special Releases:

Monday@5: Oliva Bourbon Barrel Quad (d) and Petrus Aged Red (b)

Tuesday@5: McChouffe(d) and Prearis Quad (b)

Wednesday@: Liefman Cuvee Brut (d) and La Trappe Isid'or (b) PLUS Pints for Prostate Duvel Glass


@12PM: St. Bernardus Christmas 2012 and Bucaneer Christmas 2012

@5PM: Delirium Noel 2012 and Silly Noel 2011

Friday@5: La Fin du Monde (d) and Ommegang XV (b)

Also available while supplies last Ommegang B.I.D. Double Wit

Belgian Beer Week 2013 - Take 1

And the Meddlesome Moth fires the first shot in the battle for you dollars for Belgian Beer Week 2013

Meddlesome Moth
The Moth's Belgian/Belgian-style Draught Week is 8 days away now. We have slowly been preparing ourselves for the week. You may have picked up on some of it......the arsenal of St. Feuillien missiles around the bar, the animal roasting and the kegs are stacking up behind the curtain. must be wondering about what those might be. is a glimpse.

Van Steenberge Leute Bok

Van Steenberge Tripel Van De Garre

Van Steenberge Gulden Draak Vintage

Bosteels Pauwel Kwak

Saison Dupont Cuvee Dry Hopped 2013

Petrus Aged Red

Petrus Aged Pale

New Belgium Cascara Quad

New Belgium/Dieu de Ciel Heavenly Feijoa Tripel

Adelbert's Tripel B

Jester King Le Petit Prince

Leifmans Goudenband

DeKonick Triple d'Anvers 2012

St. Bernardus Christmas

Boulevard Saison Brett

Green Flash Brewing Co. Le Freak

Dubuisson Scaldis Ale 2012

Dogfish Head Beer Black and Blue

Lakewood's Brabo's Cut

La Trappe Quad

Silly Noel 2011

Duvel Single

Ommegang BPA

Maredsous 10

Bockor VanderGhiste Oud Bruin

Ommegang Belgian Independence 2012 Tripel

D'aChouffe Houblon

Bockor Cuvee des Jacobins Rouge

Community Trinity Tripel

Prairie Artisan Ales Prairie Hop

Ter Dolen Armand

St. Feuillien Speciale

That's a good start. We hope to add a few more of this and that but we can't have it all now. We will have 5 other taps devoted to some dank Imperial IPAs and Texas Craft Beer.

Saint Arnold Divine Reserve #13 Quad on Wednesday the 16th at 5 pm. Don't worry there will be plenty for a day or so.

Limited Belgian glassware giveaway with purchase Mon-Friday at 5pm.

As more info pops up, we will be sure to pass it the Pig Roast on Saturday the 20th!!!

Tuesday, July 2, 2013

Special Offer For Our Fellow Beer Lovers

Dear Snobs and Snobbets,

The Dallas Observer BrewFest is rapidly approaching (August 24th) and we have a special offer to share with you courtesy of the Dallas Observer.  Enter the promo code "dallasbeersnobs" when purchasing your tickets and save $5.00 off  a General Admission ticket and $10.00 off a VIP pass.  With over 200 beer selections this is your chance to try many of the beers that we mention (or slam) and save some cabbage.  Think of it as your chance to get something from us besides inane reviews and warped opinions.  - Bon

Join the Dallas Observer on Saturday, August 24th in the Dallas Arts District as we celebrate the 3rd Annual Dallas Observer BrewFest.  Enjoy sampling over 200 types of beer from around the globe, while listening to live music.  Doors open at 6:00 for VIP and 7:00 for General Admission. 

Dallas Arts District – Harwood Street between Woodall Rogers & Ross and Flora Street between Olive St & Harwood, Dallas, TX 75201

Advance General Admission tickets and VIP tickets are available NOW at

All Tickets Include 12 – 2 oz. Beer Samplings, with additional sampling cards available for purchase for $2 at the event.  VIP includes: 12 – 2 oz. Beer Samplings from 200+ Beer Options PLUS Early Entry into Event one hour earlier at 6:00, access to VIP Area with liquor sampling and exclusive catered food.  

Food Available for Purchase from: BratHaus, Chili's Bar & Grill, Hacienda on Henderson 

More Information at  A portion of the proceeds will benefit Dallas Arts District.

Guests must be 21+, with a valid I.D.

We would love to offer you a promo code to use to purchase discounted tickets.  
Promo Code: dallasbeersnobs
Discount: $30 GA tickets; $60 VIP tickets

Event Website:
Ticketfly Purchase:

Summer Pale Ales

Hot.  Damned hot.  I need something light, but not so light that it has no flavor (i.e. Lagers/Pislners).  So what do I reach for?  A Saison?  Hmmm, maybe, darned filling though.  A Pale Ale?  Ahhh, yeah, now that is more like it.  A typical Pale Ale will be light, a bit citrusy with the hops and lower alcohol, perfect for a grilled burger on a hot day.  But which? 

Rate Beer has released their top 10 list of their highest rated Pale Ales for summertime consumption.  So if you wish to jump onto the Pale Ale trail, this would be a good place to start.

Beer                                                          Score
1 Three Floyds Alpha King                          100

2 Maine Beer MO                                        99

3 Oskar Blues Dales Pale Ale                        98

4 Great Divide Fresh Hop Pale Ale                98

5 Maine Beer Peeper Ale                              97

6 Evil Twin Sønderho Hipster Ale                  97

7 Deschutes Hop Trip                                   97

8 AleSmith X                                                97

9 Epic Copper Cone Pale Ale                         97

10 Mikkeller K:rlek                                       97

Enjoy your 4th of July weekend. - Bon