The end of 2013 inches closer, bringing with it the beginning of the new year, thoughts of life and death, openings and closings. Earlier we celebrated the most noteworthy restaurant openings of 2013. Now let us take a moment of silence to reflect on those we lost. The biggest closings of the year were surprising, disappointing or just, well, complicated.
Rosemont During the eight months it was open, restaurateur Tracy Miller's Rosemont (waffles pictured above) received mixed reviews, though there was optimism that it would grow into its own. Sadly that wasn't the case, and the joint dedicated to casual and elegant breakfasts closed its doors and its fish sandwiches to make way for Alligator Cafe.
Tried and True The Tried and True is an example of the way everything about a restaurant can be perfect on paper but still lack some ineffable quality that brings together all of its elements. The name reflected the reliability of its concept, the tried-and-trueness of burgers and whiskey, but even that solid formula couldn't keep it going.
Private|Social After chef Tiffany Derry left a year ago, Private|Social went through an identity crisis, unveiling a super-modern menu that didn't score with critics or diners. After that the pendulum swung in the other direction with an almost sarcastic über-Texas menu, which wasn't enough to save it.
BEE: Best Enchiladas Ever At the very, very end of last year, the home of the self- (and Cheap Bastard-) proclaimed best enchiladas ever closed for business. BEE was the latest venture by Monica Greene of Monica's Aca Y Alla, but the enchiladeria folded like a corn tortilla , making way for Zoli's NY Pizza Tavern.
Mextopia Before Mudsmith and Truck Yard and Trader Joe's all moved in, Richard Avila's Mextopia tried to make its stand in Lower Greenville. The 2010 winner of the Observer's Readers' Pick for Best New Restaurant, it closed in January.
Tacos La Banqueta A godsend for fans of crisp and flavorful organ meat, La Banqueta is a slowly expanding taco empire under the rule of Mexico City native Alberto Neri. Just before La Banqueta was named one of Dallas' 50 Most Interesting Restaurants, its original location in East Dallas, considered the best in the chain, shut down.
Restaurant AVA In early April news broke that Randall Copeland, the chef of Rockwall's Restaurant AVA, died. AVA was known for its menu based around locally produced and sustainable ingredients, long before those became faddish buzzwords. Copeland was so integral to the restaurant that two days later, after one last dinner for friends and family, AVA closed.
Mockingbird Taproom/Boca Chica//Townhouse Kitchen and Bar As part of corporate downsizing, Restaurants-America Inc. shut down three of its Dallas restaurants in rapid succession this summer. Mockingbird Taproom at Mockingbird Station, Townhouse Kitchen and Bar in the Galleria and Boca Chica at The Shops at Park Lane all went dark within three months (Townhouse and Boca Chica actually closed on the same day).
Charlie Palmer at The Joule In the midst of renovations at the super fancy Joule Hotel, the super fancy restaurant Charlie Palmer closed, making way for CBD Provisions. Initially the hotel planned to change Charlie Palmer into some manner of steak house but ultimately they decided to just kill it.
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Snuffer's Restaurant & Bar on Greenville Avenue The Snuffer's chain no longer belongs to its owner, Pat Snuffer, but to the Firebird Restaurant Group. The original Snuffer's location is now shut down, and Snuffer the person is in the process of turning it into another burger-and-cheddar-fries-driven restaurant with the rest of his name: Pat's Burger & Cheddar Fries.