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Dallas College's Annual Bits and Bites is Back at the Dallas Arboretum

Hungry supporters line up at a previous Bits and Bites event at the arboretum in support of Dallas College's culinary arts program.
Hungry supporters line up at a previous Bits and Bites event at the arboretum in support of Dallas College's culinary arts program. Courtesy of Dallas College
The annual fundraiser for Dallas College’s culinary arts program, Bits and Bites, returns to the Dallas Arboretum on April 3.

The food and wine fundraising event plans to serve 18,000 plates of food made by 35 of the best chefs in Dallas. Alongside the chefs will be students from Dallas College’s high school and college programs.

“The event exemplifies the Dallas College commitment to connect students to experiences and
careers in the exciting culinary and hospitality industry,” said Steve DeShazo, senior director of workforce and career connected learning at Dallas College, in a press release. “Due to workforce shifts during the pandemic there has never been a better time to professionalize your career in this industry.”

More than half the chefs for the event are alumni, most notably Nikki Phinyawatana and Thuy Carroll. Phinyawanta attended culinary school at Dallas College’s El Centro campus in 2003-2004 and is the founder and CEO of the award-winning Asian Mint restaurants. Carroll has been featured on TV baking shows, local magazine articles and operates a boutique cottage baking business in Dallas called Buster’s Bakeshop.

“I enjoy meeting people who have the same mentality as me of supporting a school that gives back to the community,” Phinywatana said in the release. “I enjoy meeting the students who are so excited; it’s the biggest food event they are involved with.”

Some dishes to be on the lookout for include Phinyawantana’s Bangkok bowl (a Thai noodle salad) and Carroll’s lemon pound cake, “Toast Points,” served with a cream cheese mousse and blueberry “caviar.” Other chefs in attendance will include Observer favorites Dunia Borgia (La Duni Baking Studio), Ruben Núñez (Petra and the Beast), John Tesar (Knife) and Michael Wyatt (Full City Rooster).

The fundraiser will run from 5 to 8 p.m. April 3 at the Dallas Arboretum. Regular tickets are $75, with VIP tickets available for $500 or $1,000 that offer an elevated, small-plate experience among other perks.
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Chance Townsend is the Dallas Observer's food intern for spring 2022. He's a grad student at UNT, and his favorite time of the day is unlimited mimosa brunch. If he's not writing about food then he's probably in the kitchen cooking it.