8 Reasons To Visit The New Cane Rosso At The Star in Frisco

On July 31st, Cane Rosso will open their newest location at The Star in Frisco.

If you’re unfamiliar with the Neapolitan pizza brand, allow me to give you a brief rundown before we start our list of reasons you need to be there.

Since opening the original location in Deep Ellum, Cane Rosso has been on more media channels than I could possibly name, but just for starters they’ve been crowned Best Pizza in Dallas for multiple years by multiple publications, have been featured on The Food Network’s “Diners, Drive-ins, and Dives”,  Eater’s 38 Essential Pizzerias in the Nation, plus many more accolades I’m sure they’d be happy to fill you in on.

Founded by former corporate exec Jay Jerrier, who was inspired by his honeymoon trip to Italy to open a Neapolitan pizza concept, Cane Rosso has grown quickly to 9 locations throughout Texas, and they’ve even ventured into animal rescue via Cane Rosso Rescue.
Cane Rosso serves authentic, wood-fired Neapolitan pizzas, pasta, sandwiches, and salads. The kitchen is led by Naples-native Dino Santonicola,  Executive Chef and Master Pizzaiolo.

Here I leave you 8 reasons to visit the new Cane Rosso at The Star in Frisco:

1. The Star Pizza. This cross between pizza and calzone is found exclusively at the Frisco location. Stuffed with Ricotta and fresh Mozzarella, then topped with heirloom tomatoes, pepperoni, and arugula, you can totally tell your trainer it’s a salad and I won’t tell a soul.

2. The one of a kind Stefano Ferrara-designed pizza oven in the shape of a football helmet. Shipped all the way from Italy, so you know it’s gonna be legit.

3. To try their other new menu items found exclusively at the Star: Cane Rosso’s wings and fried Calzones.

4. If you haven’t been before to Cane Rosso, or if you’re a stickler for an actual printed menu item, you might need to go just to experience The Honey Bastard. Listed on one of my 100 best bites in DFW in 2016 and heck, every year, this not-so-secret off-menu pie offers the perfect level of sass and sweetness to quench my frequent pizza hunger. Seriously. My favorite pizza in life. Bucket list this pizza. Maybe if you promise them you’ll write a nice yelp review they’ll make one in the shape of a star for you too. #mediaperks

5. Bathroom art like you’ve never seen. Talented Dallas artist Clay Stinnett creates masterpieces for all of the CR locations. This one’s taken it to a whole new level.

6. Their sibling dessert hot spot – Cow Tipping Creamery is located right next door. If you aren’t tempted enough by CR’s delicious dessert pizzas, mosey on over to Cow Tipping Creamery for soft serve stackers you simply can’t refuse.

7. Sporty patio views for days. You can see the turf of the Cowboys’ outdoor practice facilities. The ultimate in people watching…

 

8. To see The Star in Frisco if you haven’t yet! Walk around and see all of the exciting things to come, rub elbows with people I’d probably never recognize. Whatever floats your boat. It’s all happening at the Star.

 

3685 The Star Blvd Suite 200
Frisco, TX

*While my meal at Cane Rosso was complimentary, as always, all opinions remain my own.

Brunch, Reimagined at UP Inspired Kitchen

UP Inspired Kitchen wants to elevate your daytime dining game with healthy, chef driven breakfast, brunch, and lunch.

Located in the new section of the Shops at Starwood in Frisco, the new fast-casual concept is bringing a ton of California flair to Texas, right alongside our new Toyota neighbors (welcome, btw, y’all).

What you’ll find on the menu at UP are dishes you don’t have to feel guilty about, plus some fun “cheat day” options (for people like me, Hallelujah!).

Founded by Mike Luther and his wife Rachel (Rae) Phillips-Luther, their mission at UP is to “inspire you to feel your best so you can be your best”. Mike runs the day to day operations at the restaurant and his passion is evident when you meaet him. The inspiration for their restaurant was to provide a place with a healthy, flavor-filled menu, that any family member can enjoy. Explains Rachel, “Our family is our world. UP was inspired by our family’s values: heart, health, and happiness. We offer better for you food served in a lively atmosphere, and our guests tell us they leave inspired to do more. We hope UP Inspired Kitchen makes it easy for the North Dallas community to eat well, feel great and live fully. Every day we have an opportunity to be a happier version of ourselves and UP makes it easy to make that a reality.”

Zucchini Salad – that pulled chicken is delicious and juicy

The menu at UP was a collaboration with Todd Duplechan, an award winning Austin-based chef who is passionate about clean, responsibly-sourced, low glycemic recipes that leave you feeling good after you finish your meal. You’ll find classics with a healthy twist, like their Biscuits ‘n Groovy – a gluten-free dish featuring a tasty corn and Serrano muffin topped with a cage-free egg and cauliflower gravy that really had me fooled. Believe me, I go into all healthy situations a skeptic, and what they’re making here at UP really does taste GOOD.

Biscuits ‘n Groovy

UP  caters to those following a Whole 30, Paleo or gluten free diet with a variety of vegetarian, vegan and gluten-free entrees and a kid’s menu.

Veggie Toast (also shown in cover photo)

If you’re like me and interested mostly in the “cheat day” entrees, you can’t go wrong with the Breakfast Burger, UP cakes, French Toast, Huevos UPcheros, or Short Rib Grilled Cheese. I can’t wait to return and try them all! And look, it still comes with a healthy side, so stop judging me.

To wash down your feel good meal, choose from Buda Juice, Holy Kombucha (it’s on tap), Limitless Coffee, Manny’s Cortado, and local brews also on tap. UP’s full espresso bar additionally serves Bulletproof Coffee. When fully indulging, do not miss the Mimosa Sampler , which comes with a bottle of champagne, two fresh juices, and kombucha.

UP is open daily from 7a.m. – 3 p.m., and seats guests in the dining room, coffee bar (powered with numerous outlets) and exterior patio (which features a small playhouse for the littles). For more information visit.

UP Inspired Kitchen
the Shops at Starwood
5285 North Dallas Parkway Suite 400
Frisco, TX 75034

 

New Menu + Gaming Booths at @nerdvana Frisco

Frisco is a happening place to be, if you’re into the restaurant scene. What was once was a haven for mostly huge national chains now has exciting new openings (both mom and pop joints and nationally recognized chef-driven) announced almost daily. Enter @nerdvana.food + spirits, which opened a few months back (read my full write-up of @nerdvana in Plano Magazine). After several months of being open for business and real life market research, they made a few adaptations that fit better with their demographic, namely, 12 new family-friendly booths with gaming consoles, the addition of kids menus, extended brunch hours, and revamped brunch and dinner menus.

The drink menu is still large and filled with a variety of alcoholic beverages, so no need to panic, your favorite cocktail is still there.

On my visit to see the new renovations and taste some new menu items, I sipped on The Eldrid, made with Dripping Springs Texas vodka, elderflower liqueur, fresh squeezed lime juice, fresh thyme, raspberry puree, topped with soda and served over ice. A refreshing cocktail, would be perfect for sipping on their outdoor patio.

drink at Nerdvana spirits frisco
The Eldrid

I also sampled the Sgt. Baker: Knob Creek bourbon, robust maple syrup, fresh squeezed orange juice, lemon, orange bitters, topped with soda, and served over ice. If you love a good strong cocktail, this one is for you. Love that this spot has several different whiskey/bourbon-based concoctions.

Nerdvana Frisco cocktail
Sgt. Baker

One of their newest starters are the Ultimate Potato Wedges (think cheese fries, all grown up). These are roasted fingerling potatoes piled high with melted cheddar, bacon, grilled jalapeños and green onions, served with choice of BBQ sauce or salsa and sour cream (hint: all of Chefs sauces are made in house and fantastic. Maybe ask for both.).

appetizers at Nerdvana Frisco Eat in Frisco
Ultimate Potato Wedges
The Brick Chicken came highly recommended by several people, and I’ve been recommending it ever since. This dish is half a chicken, deboned, then soaked in an original rosemary lemon garlic marinade before being seared under a hot brick.  Then it’s served over garlic mashed potatoes and sautéed broccolini and topped with Chef Mike’s signature (and again, a delicious sauce) lemon thyme beurre blanc.
Entrees at Nerdvana Frisco Eat in Frisco
Brick Chicken
The Stroganoff caught my eye because it’s made with prime beef filet mignon. Thus, The Velvet Rope in the title. They sautéed fresh wild mushrooms and white onion plus their homemade sauce and freshly made noodles, and there you have the VIP of comfort foods.
Entrees and new menu items at Nerdvana Frisco Eat in Frisco
House-made Velvet Rope Beef Stroganoff

I truly believe in what Chef Mike Junio and his team are doing here, and his use of only the freshest and best ingredients in every dish. Go in, grab a video game controller, order some fun-inspired food and drinks, and stay awhile at @nerdvana.food+spirits.

Gaming at Nerdvana Frisco
Brand new kid-friendly gaming booths
5757 Main street #112
Frisco, TX
   214.618.9732

 

Texadelphia: Home of the Original “Texas Cheesesteak”

Philly Cheese Fries. Order these. 

If there’s one thing I’ve learned about Texans in my 9 years here, it’s this: they love them some Texas. With that in mind, Texadelphia had an obligation to bring a twang of Texas pride to the beloved Philadelphia Cheesesteak.

The Cheesesteak is one of my weaknesses. One of my favorite lunches is a piping hot cheesesteak with gooey cheese and some spicy peppers, served on a perfect hearth-baked Amoroso roll. So naturally, I was a skeptic when I first visited Texadelphia. But I’m happy to report that after only a brief hiatus, they’ve continued serving their tasty Texas twist on the cheesesteak on those must-have rolls.

Texadelphia got its start in 1981 in Austin (Texas, of course) and has always kept in the forefront of their restaurant a dedication to high quality, fresh ingredients. Each cheesesteak is made to order. They make all of their sauces in house, so if you love sauces as much as I do, this place is your playground. They pay attention to their customers. In short, what they’re doing is simple, and they’re doing it well.

The menu at Texadelphia features Original Texas Cheesesteaks, scratch made queso, guacamole, and salsa in addition to their other homemade Signature Sauces (see photo at the end). They also serve salads, deli sandwiches, and burgers. Their cheesesteaks and sandwiches comes served with tortilla chips and salsa. I highly recommend The Texican, which comes with your choice of beef or chicken (I always choose beef for a sandwich like this) plus grilled onions, mozzarella, and jalapeños, plus a side of queso for dipping. Yes. This is how they’ve won me over. Cheesesteak + Queso = Perfect lunch. 
Other popular choices are The Founder’s Favorite (this one adds mushrooms and the house mustard blend) and the South Philly. Plenty of options here, y’all.
You know I had to photograph their Sauces signage 
If you’re looking to cater an office lunch, picnic, party, or office event, look no further. You can contact your closest location for all the catering details to set up your Texas Cheesesteak, Deli Sandwich, Salad Tray or Box Lunch delivery.
All Texadelphia restaurants are locally owned and operated. Texadelphia currently has 12 locations, all in Texas and (sigh)Oklahoma (See, I’ve learned a thing or two from Texans). 

 

PDQ Now Serving Angus Beef

In Alabama, where I was born and raised, I’ve always known the letters PDQ to stand for “pretty darned quick”. That’s initially what I this new (to Texas) restaurant’s name meant when they opened their Frisco location, a couple years ago. I learned quickly that this was not the case. PDQ (the restaurant) stands for People Dedicated to Quality, and I’m excited to share with you about their latest quality menu items, made with 100 percent natural, never frozen, angus beef.

But first, a little about the brand I’ve come to really enjoy over the last couple of years.

Nick Reader and Bob Basham opened their first PDQ in Tampa, Florida in 2011. Nick and Bob’s journey to open PDQ originally began in 2009 when Bob, looking for new inspiration teamed up with Nick, who wanted to open a fast food spot that he could feel good about serving his children. They found just that in a mom and pop restaurant in North Carolina named Tenders. They struck a deal, and the rest is history. 

The brand now has more than 50 locations nationwide and are quickly becoming a household name. The food speaks for itself, and sets PDQ apart with their focus on quality and production of delicious fresh chicken tenders, salads, sandwiches, and shakes. They’ve focused on these menu items for 6 years now, so I was kind of surprised to learn they were adding a whole new protein to their stores. I knew the company’s dedication to quick food, freshness, and hospitality, but I was pleasantly surprised they’re not stopping there. Continuous innovation and new menu items keep PDQ current and always give you something new to come back and try. In fact, there aren’t many “fast food” concepts I would cover on my blog, but PDQ stands apart as one I am proud to recommend. The food is all prepared fresh to order (patience please) and the team is happy to customize the items to your liking.  

Some of my favorite “off the beaten path” fast food menu items have been the Grilled Turkey Breast Sandwich (it’s like Thanksgiving on a bun), apple slices with a seriously addictive toffee dip, and zucchini fries. Plus they introduced me to Cheerwine, a North Carolina soda staple that is a cherry flavored carbonated treat. Last year they added a new Honey Butter Chicken Sandwich to their menu, and just as everything else, it impressed. So naturally, when the kind people with PDQ invited me in to sample the latest addition, I expected good things. 
As you saw on the cover photo (that Bacon Double Cheeseburger, tho!), the new burgers are handsome to look at (and drool over). You’ll be happy to discover the taste lives up to the beauty. The burger is juicy and exactly the top quality you come to expect from Angus beef. You can also order a regular cheeseburger (seen above, no bacon) if you’re not into pork.
 
The Fiesta Taco Salad is a great option for those looking to dine a tad lighter. Homemade taco meat served atop mixed greens with fresh sliced avocado, cheddar and jack cheeses, black beans, tomatoes, tortilla strips, and a zesty Peppercorn Ranch dressing, this is sure to please.
Side dish alert: a nearly biweekly afternoon snack of mine are PDQ‘s zucchini fries. A wise reader once recommended them with the ranch dressing, and I haven’t looked back. (I also looooove the Buffalo Bleu Sauce for my tenders. And maybe with a spoon. Don’t judge.) You can order them as a an appetizer and share with friends, there’s plenty in a serving.

Rest easy knowing that each and every sauce, tender, burger, and fry at PDQ is made fresh in store with the utmust attention to quality and freshness. Any store that lets me see their kitchen and entire operation from top to bottom is absolutely okay with me. No frozen mess here…just real ingredients and welcoming people.

PDQ has North Texas locations in Frisco, Plano and Murphy.
Check the website to find your nearest location.

Aiya Asian Cuisine Now Open: A First Look

Aiya opened its doors after over a year of anticipation by passersby. We snuck in today for a first glimpse.  

 Everyone knows this building has undergone a MASSIVE overhaul over the last months, to say the least.

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The inside is very welcoming. Staff and owners willing to help and mention several times to please speak up if there is any need for improvement in any way. It’s good to see that kind of interest in an owner.

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For this first glimpse, an order of Crab Rangoon and General Tso’s Chicken were ordered.

The sauces shown with the Crab Rangoon are a traditional Hot Mustard Sauce and a light Lemon Sweet & Sour Sauce. I like mixing the two for a sweet and spicy punch.  The Rangoon were perfectly fried, and super-stuffed with cream cheese filling.

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The General Tso’s Chicken came with fried rice and a Cantonese Spring Roll. The chicken was cooked well and the sauce was flavorful. I cut up the peppers into bite-sized pieces and it brought the spice level up to the notch I was expecting in the sauce.

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Overall, I think Aiya is off to a solid start. Definitely a notch above any other Asian restaurants in that part of Frisco. Check it out and let us know what you think!

Fede Trattoria Brings White Tablecloth Italian to Frisco

Sorry for the dim photos…
But. I have exciting news for you Frisco.

Fede Trattoria went above and beyond last night in taking care of and feeding us. Since I hadn’t been able to find a menu yet online, I really didn’t have a clue what I was walking into. I was pretty surprised to find a valet parking stand out front, something we don’t see a whole lot of a Frisco restaurants just yet.

I have to admit upon walking in I felt underdressed in my denim shirt and gray pants, but after looking around I saw other people dressed casually as well.

The restaurant is truly a transformed departure from former tenant Blue’s pub.

White tablecloths, fiery red walls, a maitre’d with a delightful accent who pulls out your chair and places your napkin on your lap, and superb service from start to finish.

fedeT-inside

The calamari appetizer was made with thick and juicy calamari steaks and served with an aioli for dipping.

FedeT-calamari

Complimentary house salad was tossed in a flavorful vinaigrette.

FedeT-salad

The lobster ravioli tasted fresh and light.

FedeT-lobsterravioli

The special of the evening that drew me in for an immediate visit was their fritta del mar. Tons of mussels, clams, and shrimp served in a creamy saffron and lobster risotto.

FedeT-special

Fede Trattoria is a much needed fine dining option with fair pricing.