All work, and no fun makes this chef a dull person. So with this in mind, we head out for a little different fun, finding ourselves in Deep Ellum — a booming entertainment district in Dallas. In this district sits a new establishment called the Bottled Blonde, an Italian style fair mixed with a beer garden., located at 505 N Good Latimer Expy, in Dallas.


The establishment offers domestic and specialty beer. The place is set up for fun; multiple TVs for sports and events, a huge covered patio with different games and activities and relaxing sitting areas with fire pits to get cozy near.


It cannot be all fun, so we slide a little bit of work in by ordering a few items off the menu to try out. (I lie it is still fun.) The pizza rolls were a tasty starter item. Then, I tried the antipasti platter, which consisted of oven baked flat bread served with tomato jam, olives, cheeses and cured meats.


The dish was fantastico, or extremely tasty for those of us who speak Texan. If you are looking for a bit of an adventure and something different in your night life, I highly recommend trying the Bottled Blonde. For the ones thinking that Deep Ellum is a bit of a drive, yes, it is an hour drive. However, the establishment is well worth the commute. Just plan a Friday night out with your significant other or a few friends, and hop on Highway 75 South.


For the ones who prefer to stay in, here is a little something to try on your own.


Beer cheese dip


· 2 Tbsp unsalted butter


· 3 Tbsp. all-purpose flour


· 3/4 cup milk, divided


· 1/2 cup beer (a lager or an ale — your preference)


· 1 tsp. Dijon mustard


· 1/4 tsp. garlic powder


· 1/4 tsp. salt


· 1/8 tsp. cayenne pepper (plus more for garnish)


· 3 cups shredded extra sharp cheddar cheese


1. In a medium sauce pan over medium heat, melt the butter. Whisk in the flour.


2. Take the pan off of the heat, and whisk in 2 tablespoons of the milk until smooth. Then, whisk in 2 more tablespoons. Add 1/4 cup of the milk, and whisk that until smooth followed by the final 1/4 cup of milk.


3. Stir in the beer, Dijon, garlic powder, salt and cayenne. Return the pan to medium heat, and stir until thick and bubbling - about 2-3 minutes. Remove from heat.


4. Add the cheese, one big handful at a time, whisking after each addition to melt it in. Taste and add more garlic, salt and cayenne, if desired. Garnish with a pinch more of cayenne.