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Dallas’ 5 Biggest Dining Stories of 2017

Viral weirdness, Craiglist gold, and a critic’s departure top this year’s list

This Cadillac barbecue smoker changed the game in 2017
Amy McCarthy is a reporter at, focusing on pop culture, policy and labor, and only the weirdest online trends.

In so many ways, 2017 was a wild year. As far as Dallas dining is concerned, the scene saw an influx of trends from across the country (like poke) and a ton of exciting new eateries. 2017 also brought a ton of major (and occasionally bizarre) news stories, ranging from viral Whataburger odes to the appointment of a Dallas restaurateur to the Trump administration.

As this year (finally) wraps up, take a look back at the 10 biggest Dallas dining stories from 2017.

Somebody Buy This Ridiculous Cadillac DeVille Barbecue Smoker


At the low, low price of $1800, this barbecue smoker creatively constructed from the frame of a 1988 Cadillac DeVille is arguably the city’s most inventive pit. It offered the capacity to smoke 1,300 pounds of meat at a time, and even came with its very own trailer hitch for portable smoked meats parties. Sadly, some lucky Craigslist user has already snapped this treasure up, so it’s no longer on the market.

Le Bilboquet Owner Speaks Out About Donald Trump Jr.’s ‘Offensive’ Obama Cake

Donald Trump Jr./Instagram

For whatever reason, Donald Trump Jr. decided to celebrate his 40th birthday at Dallas’ Le Bilboquet. While there, he snapped selfies with Texas senator (and former Trump rival) Ted Cruz and showed off an offensive cookie cake that ostensibly featured the face of President Obama. Internet outrage ensued, Le Bilboquet’s owner apologized and condemned the cake, furious that Trump had used his restaurant as a “platform to spread hatred.” With any luck, this debacle will keep Donald Trump Jr. away from Dallas forever.

Leslie Brenner Resigns Her Post As Dallas Morning News Food Critic

Courtesy Rebees

After eight tumultuous years as the city’s most influential restaurant critic, Leslie Brenner resigned her post at the Dallas Morning News. Brenner took a job at Rebees, the hospitality company owned by Tristan Simon that will open a number of new eateries in 2018. The Morning News still has not hired a permanent replacement for Brenner.

Diners Say Rats Fell From the Ceiling at a Dallas Chipotle

Chipotle Stock Plunges 14 Percent To 5-Year Low After Weak Earnings Report Photo by Scott Olson/Getty Images

Yikes. On a July afternoon, actual rats fell from the sky in the dining room of a West End Chipotle. The outpost eventually shuttered, citing major structural issues in the building in which it was housed.

DFW Man’s Hilariously Soulful Ode To Whataburger’s Honey Butter Chicken Biscuit Goes Viral


McKinney pastor Fred Thomas penned the track of the year in “Something About This Biscuit,” an ode to Whataburger’s beloved Honey Butter Chicken Biscuit. Since it was uploaded to Facebook in February, the video has racked up more than 8 million views and earned a place in the heart of every Texan.