Can a local Fort Worth restaurant run by a chef succeed at Alliance Town Center?
The answer is to The Tavernthe cousin of northern Fort Worth, City grill.
Towne Grill, 9365 Rain Lily Trail, is a quasi-twin of The Tavern, chef Felipe Armentais the first restaurant here.
Five miles north of Loop 820, in a shopping vortex of chain restaurants, Towne offers a local owner, a simple menu, weekend brunch and beef from the new Armenta ranch southwest of Fort Worth, near Walnut Springs.
If you live in central Fort Worth and miss the Tavern while it is undergoing renovations – it is slated to reopen in early September at 2755 S. Hulen St. – then Towne Grill is a 15 minute toll drive to north on Interstate 35W.
He has the same pan-fried cornbread, the same large salads with bacon dressing; the same burgers, plates or brunches; and best of all, the same cream pies or lime pies with a cinnamon and pecan graham cracker crust.
If you live in North Fort Worth, the question is how to identify owner-operated restaurants like Towne Grill in the middle of a sea of cookie-cutter corporate chains.
“They’re just getting to know us – they’re so used to these channels,” Armenta said this week.
He’s adjusted the menu, lowering a few prices (platters start at $ 14, up to $ 30 for the smoked prime rib) and offering wagyu beef from his own ranch southwest of Fort Worth, near Walnut Springs. .
“They love meat and potatoes here and I knew it,” said Armenta, also owner of Maria’s Mexican Kitchen, Pacfic Table and Press Cafe in Fort Worth.
“A lot of the beef on our ranch comes here. There is a rumor that we are a restaurant in Fort Worth. … I want to be the neighborhood where people can know they can get a meal made from scratch.
The weekend brunch menu starts at 10 a.m. and includes omelets, egg platters with blueberry sausage, pecan and caramel French toast, or huevos rancheros (all $ 14 to $ 16).
On weekdays, the menu features familiar tavern appetizers, including cast iron skillet cornbread ($ 7) and the most popular appetizer, stuffed eggs ($ 7).
Zuni Roast Chicken Apple, Walnut, and Pecan Salad ($ 16) is familiar at restaurants in downtown Fort Worth, and there’s also a Cobb salad, steak salad, or miso-glazed salmon salad with green tea noodles (all between $ 16 and $ 19).
Armenta serves turkey or veggie burgers ($ 14 with fries) similar to those at Pacific Table or Press Cafe. But note the wagyu cheddar burger or a barbecue cheddar burger with Canadian bacon.
Starters include wagyu meatloaf ($ 21), a steak and chicken-enchilada combo ($ 25), smoked prime rib at $ 30 or the popular Armenta ribs ($ 20) and a pork chop double ($ 24).
The desserts come straight from the Tavern: the key lime pie ($ 9), a cream of the day pie or a large hot fudge sundae.
Towne Grill is open for lunch or brunch and dinner daily; 817-916-0390, townegrilltx.com.
This story was originally published August 25, 2021 at 5.45 am.