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Making Dallas Even Better

Podcast: The Secrets of Sour Beer

In the July issue of D Magazine, our dining critic, Eve Hill-Agnus, wrote about “The Mad Scientist of Sour Beer,” a fellow named Barrett Tillman who followed his muse into an unusual form of brewing that purposefully uses bacteria in its process. Tillman stopped by the Old Monk on Thursday afternoon to chat with Tim and Zac about how he got into the business — and maybe offer samples of his wares.

A few notes before you listen:

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Leading Off (7/1/16)

Investigation of DA’s Office Under Craig Watkins Broadens. The bribery case in which Anthony “Tony” Robinson, a former chief investigator in the Dallas County district attorney’s office, pled guilty to taking money in exchange for getting a failure-to-register-as-a-sex-offender case dismissed has already cast doubts on the actions of a former first assistant DA (and current candidate for DA himself) Heath Harris, who signed off on the dismissal. Now it appears this case may just be the start of a broader investigation of the DA’s office when Watkins was in charge. Two former U.S. attorneys told the Morning News that the actions of Robinson and Harris violated “decades of protocol dictating how cases are thrown out.”

Eatzi’s Employee Sues Phil Romano. Ichel Cook, an assistant manager at Eatzi’s, says that the restaurateur (owner of Eatzis’ and founder of the Macaroni Grill and Fuddruckers chains) inappropriately grabbed her buttocks during a company meeting in April. She filed a police report and is asking for at least $1 million in her lawsuit.

Former Cowboys Player Convicted of Sex Assault. C.J. Spillman, a former special teams player for Dallas, faces between two and 20 years in prison when he’s sentenced this morning for the 2014 crime.

Grandmother Arrested For Leaving 2-Year-Old in Hot Car. Maritza Charles told police she forgot the girl was in there when she went shopping last week. When she realized what she’d done, she rushed back to the vehicle and found the girl unresponsive.

Grand Prairie Man Wins Lottery. Lance Larkin had the winning numbers in the June 18 lotto drawing. The ticket he bought at a Kroger in Arlington won him $9.8 million after he opted for the lump-sum cash option.

Vote for the Best Food in Dallas

Amateur food critics, this is your week. I’m willing to bet your Instagram is a colorful and curated feed of Dallas’ ever-expanding culinary scene. If so, share your expertise with us for Best of Big D: Food & Drink. Now through May 15, you can weigh in on everything from your favorite taco joint and place to get a solid cup of coffee to the city’s best barbecue and Vietnamese restaurant.

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How Well Do You Know Dallas? Take Our Quiz.

Our April issue, on newsstands and subscribers’ coffee tables right now, features a motherlode of important advice for newcomers navigating life in Dallas. It seemed to us like a good time to publish such a story, considering so many people are moving to North Texas.

But maybe you’re not a newcomer. Maybe you’re a native, or you’ve been here long enough to impersonate a native. Or at least you claim that’s the case. Let us put you to the test with a little pop quiz:

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How You Can Eat Our February Cover

When we were coming up with concepts for our February “Best Breakfasts” cover, our art director, the great Kevin Goodbar, used stock art to dummy up one cover that we showed to Wick. Of course, we planned to shoot the meal ourselves. “Why?” Wick asked. “That breakfast is perfect. Use that picture.” I stammered something about people wanting to eat the actual breakfast. Wick pointed out that when we take pictures of food for the cover, the dishes sometimes don’t resemble what is actually served in the restaurant. Food stylists get involved. All sort of trickery is used to make things look appetizing under bright lights in a studio. So, yeah. We went with the stock photo.

Then a funny thing happened. We started hearing from readers who wanted to eat that now. We confessed. They kept calling. After Kevin and I did a Facebook Livestream about the cover, five restaurants stepped up and said they’d make the breakfast for our hungry readers. Rejoice! SideDish has all the tasty details. And thanks to the restaurateurs who made it happen.

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Pizza Hut Didn’t Pay to Appear in People vs. O.J. Simpson Series

Last night’s installment of the FX miniseries The People vs. O.J. Simpson (recommended) featured a cameo by Plano-based (yes, Plano, again) Pizza Hut.

The episode centers on the famous low-speed chase of Simpson’s Ford Bronco that seemingly our entire nation stopped to watch one evening in June 1994. To illustrate just what a phenomenon the incident was, the writers show how a delivery pizza restaurant has been so inundated by orders from viewers glued to their TVs that it runs out of cheese. This segment is based on the fact that the day of the chase was reportedly Domino’s Pizza’s best day ever.

Yet the restaurant depicted (see the scene above) is Pizza Hut instead. Adweek reports that this wasn’t a case of paid product placement. Which is believable, since it could appear unseemly to promote one’s brand in the midst of a retelling of the most famous double-homicide of the 20th century. The chain merely granted permission for its logos to be used after Domino’s declined.

On another note, I’m gonna need a fact-check on a throwaway line of dialogue. One of the Pizza Hut employees can be heard asking if they’ve still got chicken wings. But, according to this Pizza Hut franchisee, the restaurants didn’t start selling wings until 1995, following Domino’s lead.

I’m sure that’s the only distorted fact in the entire production.

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Where to Get the Breakfast Featured on the February 2016 Cover of D Magazine

The February issue of D Magazine, featuring the “Best Breakfasts in Dallas,” is already in subscribers’ hands and is making its way onto newsstands throughout North Texas. We’ve been inundated by questions from readers dying to know where they can find the tasty meal featured on the cover, which you can see (and be made hungry by) on this post.

This afternoon at 2:30 on our Facebook page, editor Tim Rogers and art director Kevin Goodbar will appear in a live video stream to answer that question. Click over there at the appointed time to see for yourself.

I realize that long a wait seems like an eternity, so entertain yourself meantime by viewing last week’s Facebook video, in which Tim spoke with staff writer Michael J. Mooney about his story in our January “True Crime” issue.

I know, I know — we’re cranking out so much amazing multimedia content, it’s hard to keep up.

UPDATE: It’s all over, folks. And with a twist ending. Watch.

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Dallas 500 Q&A: Tim Love, Lonesome Dove

Tim Love is the chef and owner of beloved restaurants like Lonesome Dove, Queenie’s, and Love Shack. Today his empire has grown to employ more than 350. Love, who’s also the host of CNBC’s “Restaurant Startup” program, just announced an Italian pop-up in Fort Worth called Ufficio. Later this month, he’ll host the first of a four-part dinner series there.

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The 10 Most Popular D Magazine Lists of 2015

You love them even when you love to hate them. Yes, lists — the best this or that or some other thingamajigs — are popular among our online audience, and it’s hard to imagine there ever being a time when that won’t be the case.

Here were the most popular “best” lists on during the past year:

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Our Most Memorable Pictures of 2015

If there’s one thing we can all agree about in this digitally-encoded information age in which we live — when vast libraries featuring the collected wisdom of nearly all of human history are almost always at our finger tips — it’s that words are overrated. They are terribly inefficient tools of communication.

But how much so? Well, someone — maybe Einstein? — long ago ran the numbers and determined that images are equal to 1000x, if x is the value of a word.

With that in mind, we’ve combed through our media library of the last year’s worth of pictures to appear in the pages of D Magazine and have selected our favorites. The resulting gallery (which you can view right here) is worth something in the neighborhood of 23,000 words.

That’s the equivalent of reading a novella — in hours less time. You’re welcome.

Ships Is Sunk, Regardless of Lower Greenville SUP Fight

The neighborhood squall that is brewing around the reopening of Ships looks like it will end up in a homeowners’ shakedown. The bar that had been operating near the intersection of Ross and Greenville Ave. since 1953 closed suddenly over the summer when longtime owner Charlie Red walked away from the establishment. There was rumor that the bar would reopen, and news broke that Twisted Root and Truck Yard proprietor Jason Boso was going to take the helm and keep Ships “as-is with just a minor tweak or two.”

At yesterday’s City Plan Commission meeting, however, it became clear that reopening wouldn’t be so simple.

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