Fog City Diner closes
Though the purchase has yet to be consummated, Fog City Diner shut down this past Sunday because of mass staff resignations in anticipation of a takeover by Truluck's Steak and Stone Crab in Addison. A spokesman for Truluck's says that the deal has closed and that the restaurant will be converted to Truluck's by mid-July. But Fog City managing partner Jay Schimmel counters that the money is not yet in the bank. He adds that if the funds have not been transferred by the June 1 purchase deadline, the restaurant will be renovated and re-opened in mid-June as Fog City Diner. San Francisco Bay Area-based Real Restaurants Inc. currently owns the restaurant.
In an effort to smooth over its sometimes bumpy service, Fish recently tapped former Mansion on Turtle Creek captain Louis Gougazelli as matre d'. Gougazelli has had stints as general manager at Joey's and as manager at Sipango, Mediterraneo, and Popolos. He joins Steven Occhipinti, who was recently appointed general manager of the highly acclaimed seafood restaurant after serving as manager and matre d' at Il Sorrento, Popolos, Del Frisco's, and Mi Piaci. Among Occhipinti's first moves as general manager was the institution of daily waitstaff lineups where he inspects shoes, socks, aprons, and fingernails.
After more than three years of location problems and complications with city parking ordinances, Ivanhoe,Texas-based Homestead Vineyards & Winery finally opened its metroplex tasting room in Grapevine this past weekend. Homestead has made a reputation for itself among Texas wineries for its Muscat Canelli, Chardonnay, and Cabernet Sauvignon. The winery also produces Merlot, Fume Blanc, blush, and generic red and white wines. Established in 1983 and producing some 3,000 cases annually, Homestead settled in the historic 1895 Dave Lucas House one block off Main Street for its new tasting room. Dry laws blocked the winery from opening a retail sales tasting room in its home jurisdiction of Ivanhoe. Known as a magnet for Texas winery tasting rooms, Grapevine created a special vintage district in 1993 permitting wineries to open tasting rooms and offer consumer tastings and wine sales right on the winery premises, a practice prohibited in much of Texas. Since passage of the ordinance, La Buena Vida Vineyards, Delaney Vineyards, La Bodega Winery, and now Homestead have all opened tasting rooms in the city.
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