Barfly catcher Frankie Carabetta seems to have a Big Apple fetish. Sure he has Industry Bar in Addison and Knox Street Pub on Knox. But he just opened a McKinney Avenue watering venture called Tribeca, named after the famed New York neighborhood. This after his Manhattan Bar & Lounge on Routh Street drowned in the drink. "I was gettin' a bad crowd in there," Carabetta says of the shuttering. Transit-worker union organizers perhaps. Carabetta says he plans to tweak Manhattan and reopen it in February as "a sophisticated Knox Street pub" with beer signs, plasma TVs, pizza and a thunk-outside-the-box moniker: Central Park.
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Maybe we're ripe for wine chains. Patrick Colombo, founder of Ferré and Crú wine bar, seems to think so. He's poised to open his first Crú outide of Texas in Denver's Larimer Square. This marks the fourth Crú, adding to the Texas batch in Dallas, Plano and The Woodlands. Why is Colombo breeding a Crú bunch while leaving Ferré to dangle as a single berry? "It's an uncrowded market," he explains. "There's only a handful of individual wine bars out there."... Tracy Moore-Rathbun and Lynae Fearing, wives of two well-known Dallas chefs (Kent and Dean), are harboring restaurant development thoughts. "It's like we're putting on our shoes for a marathon," explains Rathbun. "We're just in the putting-on-the-shoes part."...Former Star Canyon partner Michael Cox, who has been general manager of the Plano Central Market for the last four years, has slipped down south to take over the Dallas Central Market. This comes as Plano Central Market chef Matthew Dunn has enlisted with Stephan Pyles in his new Arts District restaurant. "Those guys have always followed him," says Cox of the Pyles' former kitchen cohorts. "I think that's how any great chef is. He's always going to carry his people around."...Wineries are exploding in Texas, up to 109 from barely 90 a couple of months ago. New entrants include Vintner's Cellar of North Texas in Plano, one of those reality winemaker shops where you can make your own, and Three Dudes Winery in San Marcos. Then there is Red Caboose Winery, a project launched by Dallas architect Gary McKibben whose firm Johnson-McKibben is specializing in winery design. Located in Meridian, Red Caboose will bottle Cabernet, Tempranillo, Viognier and Sémillon. And instead of coal or diesel fuel, Red Caboose runs on wind turbines, photovoltaic power cells and geothermal cooling and heating systems, whereby a series of four-inch, 250-foot-deep wells are bored into the earth to serve as heat sinks for circulated water and glycol. This Texas wine is green by intention.