The departure of AF+B, the farm-to-table concept from Raised Palate Restaurants, from Fort Worth’s trendy West 7th neighborhood last year came as a bit of a surprise to some, but it definitely left a vacuum in the area’s up-and-coming dining scene. The building has sat empty since September, but a Fort Worth chef hopes to fill the gap with oven-fired pizzas, sandwiches, and salads.
According to the Fort Worth Star-Telegram, Chef Felipe Armenta will bring Cork & Pig Tavern, a San Angelo-based eatery that focuses on “two common and widely favored comfort foods” – wine and pizza – to the space. Armenta comes from a family of restaurateurs who own restaurants in San Angelo, and he served as executive chef at Hillstone Restaurant Group before opening The Tavern, Pacific Table, and Press Cafe in Fort Worth.
Joining Armenta is Virginia Dalbeck, who survived Gordon Ramsay’s insults on FOX's Hell’s Kitchen and finished as the second season's runner-up. Dalbeck has been serving as executive chef of Cork & Pig Tavern’s outpost in Odessa, Texas, but will make the move to Fort Worth to lead the mini-chain’s newest kitchen.
The menu for the Cork & Pig outpost in San Angelo is largely (of course) focused on pizza and wine, and likely gives diners a good idea of what to expect when this restaurant lands later this year. Look forward to Mexican-inspired chorizo pizza, and “The Pig,” a pork-lover’s dream pie topped with pancetta, Italian sausage, and pepperoni. A relatively global wine list offers plenty of inexpensive bottles and wines by the glass.
No official opening date has been scheduled for Cork & Pig, but its owners tell the Star-Telegram that they anticipate the restaurant will be firing pies by the time summer rolls around.