Photo Cred 📸: It’ll Do profile pic on FB compliments of Soul-O
Leon Bridges threw down his Birthday Party at It’ll Do Club last night, and DJ Sober provided the dance music. While I’m not necessarily a “club” guy, It’ll Do is a divey disco that often has great acts roll through. James Murphy of LCD sound system DJ’d a night there while the band was on hiatus, and Soul Clap once dropped a hell of a set there that was very memorable. If you wanna dance the night away with chest vibrating bass and a light up dance floor without all the ego that usually comes with all that, It’ll Do is the place for you. It was a fun party and after midnight Leon broke out the guitar and sang a few songs for us. I’ll never forget the first time I got to see him perform. Lee Harveys had a fun night where all kinds of local musicians were rotating in and out. Roomsounds Guys, The Texas Gents, and Leon sang a couple songs. I knew that moment he was something special. His look, his sound, and even his humility. He’s just an all around cool dude. I couldn’t be happier for him and all his successes. More to come from him I’m sure. Last time I saw him perform prior to this was at the Granada for Neil Fest, where great local musicians from the last thirty years performed Neil Young covers. Big stars and up and comers alike. Leon dropped in for a surprise song with great acts like Norah Jones, Bozz Scaggs, The Flatlanders, Shaky Graves, Paul Cauthen and many more. I got to actually chill with Leon at Sundown next door and talk to the guy for over twenty minutes. Five minutes in I told him “I know you’re a busy man, so I’ll let you go.” He said “Are you kicking me out? I’m gonna go grab a drink and come back.” And he did! Super cool guy, always friendly seeming unchanged by his fame and success. I’m proud to have him represent Dallas (and Ft Worth) as a local musician that’s made it big.
If you want to see a poor quality video of us singing happy Birthday to him and a him returning the favor by singing and playing “I’m Coming Home” along with a few others check it here.
And the rest here
The Observer too some good pics of the action too http://www.dallasobserver.com/slideshow/leon-bridges-celebrates-his-birthday-at-itll-do-9642114/69
The Adolphus Hotel added City Hall Bistro this week. It was a lovely dinner. Straight in the front doors and up to the right passed the lobby bar, a hip, not overly swanky, white subway tile clad restaurant greeted us with some friendly hostesses and later our attentive and welcoming server Caleb. We were seated at a long communal table but didn’t feel wedged in next to table mates as there was a seat between us on both sides of the table. I stuck with tea, but the wine list had some appealing entries that my girlfriend and best bud Alex of Regalis TX indulged in. The one that caught my eye most was a bottle semi-sparkling orange wine. I’ve been ordering “orange” wine any time I see it available. Not made from oranges, they are fermented from white grapes pressed skin on, and aged on the skins for at least a few days. Some I’ve seen as long as two weeks. It brings a satisfying tannic astringency to a white wine that is hazy from the prolonged skin contact hence the “hazy orange” appearance. Unfortunately wines by the bottle were unavailable since they aren’t really open to the public yet. I certainly plan on returning, and trying that semi-sparking offering and maybe something off the cocktail menu, and maybe someday a pint of BrainDead Brew. The wine list had some other interesting choices including geeek wines I was unfamiliar with, that my fellow diners enjoyed. Wine “by the glass” was served in a carafe with nearly two glasses in it. This place seems to really be offering a fair price and good value across the board.
While this menu clearly has a Mediterranean influence, I wouldn’t classify it as such. We started off with a charcuterie board with various well chosen offerings from Regalis TX, along with pickled ramp mostarda and house made chorizo. A great start to any meal. Then we went on to black truffle couscous, duck confit on Lebanese savory pan cake (kinda sweet potato Gua Bao-esque), shaved asparagus that brought more awesomeness than I was expecting, sardines, and eventually Valencian Paella. All we’re great. While the sardines didn’t really sing for me, we cleaned all the other plates. I would have liked the paella to be served a little hotter, and maybe with a second half of grilled lemon, as one didn’t quite give us the acid we wanted. The shrimp or prawns were cooked perfectly and served head on for the brain suckers out there of which I am one. Also, plenty of gently charred rice at the bottom of the pan was fun to share with the three of us.
I am very happy to see the Downtown dining scene growing so fast. The Joule is crushing it, and the Adolphus is ready to re-enter the ring with this City Hall Bistro and the upcoming super high end French Room. I’m a firm believer that urban density is very important to Dallas earning its place along side the greatest cityies of the US and the world. We are very spread out her in North Texas. Why wouldn’t we be? We have plenty of space, however as a Dallas advocate I have to extol the virtues of urban density. It leads to increased walkabaility, a more vibrant downtown with more people on the streets supporting local retail, not just food and drink places. With uptown to the North, Greenville/Henderson district, to the North East, Deep Ellum to the East, maybe eventually Cedars to the south, and Trinity Groves to the West. Even Harwood District is starting to establish itself as independent of “Uptown”. Downtown still is the missing piece to this puzzle that can help unify the city I think. I’m cities like San Francisco or Denver or New York the idea of walking two miles (or public transport) doesn’t even make be blink. Here, it just doesn’t happen. Great food in great restaurants in great hotels Downtown makes me happy and optimistic of our direction as a city.
All in all another great couple days. Tomorrow, Community Beer Company dinner at Uchi. Give em a call, might be a couple tickets left. Thanks again for your time, as always feedback is welcome. As well as suggested future topics.
Dallas Kicks Ass