( UPDATE: Jan. 25, 2010 – More here. )
Well, it IS literally freezing out, and it's snowed twice in the last week… but things are coming together at Tei-An's rooftop patio. Construction is complete; furniture coming in; some details remain – but here is a look at the digs so far:
^ It is rather spacious in person. The bar will be at the far left.
^ View from the bar area. The glass double doors access the elevator from the first floor bar at Tei-An. There are some other amenities and nifty features still to come.
^ Looking up; ^ and, your intrepid blog-whore…
We also had our annual Festivus celebration at Tei-An tonight… Teach was insane with the food, here are just a few highlights:
^ Toro Bacon (yes, stupid perfect); ^ Ankimo in Muscadet.
^ The Daily Sashimi (impeccable quality, as usual. Teiichi picked it up at air cargo from Japan 3 hrs before it was in my belly); ^ and perhaps one of the most decadent things I've yet savored: a Full Yellowtail Collar – it's about 18" across. 'Succulent' does not begin to describe… Stay tuned!
We have enjoyed the BBQ before, and last weekend we dropped by a friend's birthday brunch over there – commiserating with the chef types also in attendance and chowing on some serious grub:
^ The handmade Drop Biscuits; ^ and a whole mess of good – featuring the "Heavy-handed" Blueberry & house made Ricotta Cheese Pancakes with Vanilla Poached Apricots and Cream… dang!
I skipped the "Blogger Pre-Opening" event at smashburger a few weeks ago, as I rarely attend those deals. But, I've joined the guys from work for lunch at smashburger twice this week (two days in a row, actually). iPhone pics for this impromptu post:
You order at the counter and the VERY attentive staff brings out the goods, offers additional "sauces," and checks up on you from time to time. The manager is also helpful in slotting customers into vacating booths during the very bustling lunch crush. The name? Well, the deal is that they take a ball of loosely ground fresh Angus and "smash" it down on the grill. It makes for a juicy and pleasingly irregular patty.
^ The Mushroom Swiss with a side of the Haystack Onions (thin and crispy, great with the spicy Horseradish dip; ^ and the Spicy Baja Burger – Pepper Jack, Guac, Chipotle Mayo, Fresh Jalps. I added "Smash Sauce" for my smashfries – Mayo, Mustard, Pickles, Lemon Juice (you know I love me the condiments).
^ Here are the Sweet Potato smashfries and the gory but delicious smashburger with Beefy Chili added. Both the Potato and Sweet Potato smashfries are tossed with Olive Oil, Rosemary and Garlic… nice.
^ As it was frickin' freezing out, Bob found the open-face Lonestar smashburger quite comforting. I guess we lucked out here, the D/FW version of the menu is a bit more interesting than some of the other locations. Cold weather be damned – we had to try the shakes – served old school. I dug my Strawberry Malt.
In the 'skinny burger" category we found these to be really good. They use a seasoning salt on the meat while grilling, though it was a bit heavy handed on the second visit – and I'm not opposed to salty burgers (I adore the Snuffer's variety). Other friends have mentioned having an issue with saltiness at smashburger – you might remind them when ordering – but don't let it stop you from trying this place out.