First Look

Written By The Seasons is Now Open in the Bishop Arts District

Written By the Seasons is a standalone spot across from Paradiso.
Written By the Seasons is a standalone spot across from Paradiso. Lauren Drewes Daniels
The Bishop Arts District can have such a wonderful and genuine energy: a neighborhood vibe with a bit of quirky and just enough tourists to be a compliment but not overwhelming. However, the secret is out about this Oak Cliff neighborhood. The very places that helped to create this feeling are being replaced by apartments. So soak it up.

All this is to say that a new spot has opened. For more than a year this stand-alone building south of Paradiso was under construction; finally, Written By The Seasons is now bustling with customers and plates of food. We’d already eaten when we came across it Sunday evening, so settled for a drink and dessert at the bar.

Large doors were open Sunday, creating one large open-air space. Tables spill out from the dining room onto a large patio, which is lovely in nice weather. The kitchen has windows, which allows passersby to take a peek at the hustle and bustle inside.

This spot is owned by the same group that owns nearby Tribal All Day Cafe, a health-food paradise serving organic juices, smoothies, superfood, power foods — fodder for champions. So, the seasonally inspired vegetable-heavy restaurant feels like a natural venture here. The name of the restaurant should tell you a bit about the menu: the offerings will change with the seasons.
click to enlarge Beetrita anyone? - LAUREN DREWES DANIELS
Beetrita anyone?
Lauren Drewes Daniels
The menu is a nice one-pager kept pretty simple with information on where food is from. There are four starters: smoked pecans, local bread, garden focaccia and a three-cheese board ($7-$19). The salad and small plate section is vegetable-heavy with a variety of different treatments applied; you can get your vegetables fried tempura style, with kimchi, ginger chili, wood-fired, roasted or braised.


Roasted figs with walnuts, upland cress, burrata and a saba sauce is $17. The bartender recommended the toasted pumpkin with sage and pecans ($10).

There are eight mains on the menu: free-range chicken, 44 Farms steak, kimchi fried cauliflower, banana leaf mahi-mahi, a seafood stew, seared dayboat scallops, salmon and roasted pork.

The beverage menu has two seasonal drinks, three classics (dirty martini, gimlet and Old Fashioned) four beers from the Manhattan Project along with four others beers. They have a full bar and the bartender will guide you through a wine selection. We didn’t try the Beetrita, made with tequila, beet, apple lime and ginger but would love to hear from someone who has.

Written By the Seasons, 380 Melba St., 4:30-9:30 p.m. Wednesday - Saturday, 4-9 p.m. Sunday. Closed Monday and Tuesday.
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Lauren Drewes Daniels is the Dallas Observer's food editor. She started writing about local restaurants, chefs, beer and kouign-amanns in 2011. She's driven through two dirt devils and is certain they were both some type of cosmic force.