Catty-corner from The Belmont Hotel in Oak Cliff is vast emptiness. The remnants of the Alamo Hotel were swept away long ago, save the vintage sign along Fort Worth Avenue, which serves as a stark reminder of what were once better times for the area.
That could change next year, though. A large multi-use complex called Sylvan Thirty is being planned for the spot. Unfair Park has followed the project as it traverses city committee meetings, zoning issues and funding. Being boldly presumptuous (and a tad optimistic) that they will hammer out all the details soon, it was announced yesterday that part of this mixed-use development will be a yet-to-be-named "culinary incubator."
Prominent local chef Sharon Hage, who previously owned the highly praised York Street, which closed more than a year ago for personal reasons, will be a "Culinary Curator." In that role, Hage will identify local chefs, bakers and artisans to work in part of the complex. The mission of the incubator concept is to support homegrown, food-related businesses.
Potential participants will have to pay a membership fee to join, which includes a shared commercial kitchen and retail space. Details on the costs haven't been worked out. But the idea is that they share in the expenses of running a business and avoid the often prohibitive costs of going at it alone.
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Cox Farms Market, a Duncanville-based family owned grocery store, is planned to serve as the center's anchor tenant. There are also plans for a local artisan butcher and wine shop, Matador Meat and Wine. The incubator would ideally bring in a variety of other small bakers and chefs.