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People line up outside the grand opening of an H-E-B grocery store in the evening.
Crowds swarmed the new H-E-B in Frisco.

The Biggest Dallas Food Stories of 2022

New H-E-B stores in the ‘burbs, cell phone bans, and boycotting goof-ups dominated the news

Courtney E. Smith is the editor of Eater Dallas. She's a journalist of 20 years who was born and raised in Texas, with bylines in Pitchfork, Wired, Esquire, Yahoo!, Salon, Refinery29, and more. When she's not writing about food, she co-hosts the podcast Songs My Ex Ruined.

Around these parts, we call it Dallas drama: the stories Eater Dallas readers love to dip into are frequently ones about discord in the world, the hospitality industry, and around food. We don’t blame you. The gossip is hot, and we’ll take a plate if folks are serving it.

There were some bright spots in the city’s top reads this year, too, like chef Tiffany Derry landing a James Beard Award semifinalist spot, all the Major Food Group openings that couldn’t have been hotter, and the long-awaited opening of H-E-B.

Here are the stories Eater Dallas readers couldn’t get enough of in 2022.

10) Carte Blanche Chef Appears to Have Falsified Resume

This story started with a Dallas Morning News report on Casey La Rue allegedly putting unverified work experience at some of the country’s most prominent restaurants on his resume. It was followed by another report when his attorney issued a cease and desist letter to the paper, and La Rue pushed back on the allegations.

Chef Tiffany Derry stands in her chef gear in front of a sign that reeds “Roots Southern Table” in her Dallas restaurant.
Chef Tiffany Derry at Roots Southern Table in Farmer’s Branch.
Kathy Tran

9) Chef Tiffany Derry’s New DFW Restaurant Is a James Beard Award Semifinalist

If you want to know why Tiffany Derry was picked as chef of the year in the 2022 Eater Dallas Awards, this is undoubtedly part of it. Derry would go on to get the furthest of any DFW person or place in this year’s competition, becoming a finalist. She’d also make one of our best plates of the year.

8) Utah’s ‘Dirty Soda’ Craze Will Hit Dallas With the Arrival of Swig

Why was dirty soda so darn popular as a concept? Maybe it was the TikToks, or perhaps we’re just underestimating how far some of y’all will drive to get a flavor-infused soda — cause this place was way off in Fairview.

7) Confessions of an H-E-B Fan in Dallas

We all love and cannot get enough of H-E-B. DFW has long been thirsty for more of these stores — and to eliminate the drive down to Waxahachie or Ennis just to shop at one. So when one finally opened in Frisco, followed quickly by a store in Plano, it was the talk of the town. Your Eater Dallas editor shared some fond H-E-B memories while waiting for the lines to die down.

6) Hillstone in Park Cities Faces Accusation of “Overt Racism” Over Dress Code

After a TikTok video went viral of a former Texan turned Los Angelina shouting out Hillstone for selectively enforcing what he deemed to be a racist dress code, a conversation began about the institutional racism in ambiguous dress codes at restaurants.

A booth table is set with a white tablecloth and china, with green velvet curtains in back and candles lit on the table.
You won’t get a cell phone into Caterina’s, so you better look at this photo.
Kevin Marple

5) Why Chef Tim Love Banned Cell Phones at His New Restaurant

A lot of opinions on our various social channels about this story. Some folks loved the idea and immediately made reservations at Caterina’s, while others thought it was one heck of an overstep. Either way, Love got everyone talking about his restaurant.

4) New York Brunch Institution Sadelle’s Opens in Dallas’s Highland Park Village

One of two openings for Major Food Group included Sadelle’s. It is as good as we were promised and will be on our brunch heatmap for the foreseeable future.

3) Following a Beto O’Rourke Event, Conservatives Boycott the Wrong Big Al’s

It would be a funny story if a locally-owned barbecue joint weren’t getting the wrong end of this misguided stick. The owner of Big Al’s in Dallas had to take to social media to let boycotters know they were targeting the wrong restaurant with their hate campaign and Yelp reviews.

A waiter flakes off a dover piccata, on a large serving dish.
The dover piccata at Carbone Dallas.
Major Food Group

2) Highly Anticipated Carbone Opens in the Dallas Design District

If you’ve waited all year to get a reservation at Carbone Dallas, good news: enough folks finally got in that it’s not entirely impossible to land without knowing somebody. Is it worth the hype? Only you can judge.

1) Are the Folks Behind ‘Yellowstone’ Investing in Fort Worth’s Cattlemen’s Steak House?

And the top story of the year, coming in hot off of being published just this December, is speculation, fueled by a Fort Worth Star-Telegram report and some insight from chef Tim Love, that the Yellowstone universe might have purchased this classic steakhouse in the Stockyards. We’re looking forward to hearing a lot more about it in 2023.

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