Editor's note: Every two weeks, we will pair a performing arts event in North Texas with a nearby restaurant, so you can make a night of your arts going. The restaurant reviews are written by Kelly Kirkendoll, a longtime North Texas public relations guru and food blogger who has the Kitchen Gone Rogue blog, where she writes about the local dining scene and shares recipes and other tips. Look for this column every other Thursday.
by Scott Zenreich
Zenreich, an actor and playwright whose work has been seen across North Texas stages and elsewhere, wrote this comedy about a young couple in Boston who open a sweets shop making the best cannoli in the city. But it's next to an established restauranteur who has his own ideas. Directed by Rhonda Boutté and featuring Clay Wheeler, Ana Hagedorn, Jeremy Schwartz, Spencer Roberts, and William Bartell in the cast, Pastry King is part of the AT&T Performing Arts Center's Elevator Project.
Runs through May 5
Sixth Floor Studio Theatre at the Wyly Theatre
Purchase tickets here
Sift + Pour, Dallas
Address: 2401 Victory Park Lane in Dallas
Sunday to Thursday, 11 a.m. to 9 p.m.
Friday and Saturday, 11 a.m. to 10 p.m.
Parking: street parking or park around the corner at the Victory Park Tower Garage (get your ticket validated!)
Distance from the show venue: about 1 mile away
For this week’s feature, we’re turning it into “Dessert and a Show” and pairing a newly opened Dallas bakery called Sift + Pour with the new play Pastry King. You can eat dessert for dinner and/or opt for one of their fresh savory crepes.
Sift + Pour is an independent, locally owned bakery and coffee shop located in the Victory Park area of Dallas. It offers freshly baked mini cupcakes, brownies, cookies, cake pops, macarons, Rice Krispies treats, cheesecake, banana bread and made-to-order sweet and savory crepes, plus espressos and teas. Soon, they'll also offer wine and beer.
When I visited, I sampled as many pastries as I could handle … and here’s the lowdown on them.
I have only five words of description here: these cookies are accurately named.
Ok, that was six. Either way, this concoction of sugar, flour, butter, dough, oats, nuts and a salty pretzel on top will make you wake up the next day wishing you had ordered a few (or a whole dozen) of Sift + Pour’s crack cookies to take home with you.
Rice Krispies Treats
Two Rice Krispies treat options were available when I visited — a traditional one with half of it dipped in a thin layer of icing with sprinkles and a chocolate peanut butter one. I ordered the traditional one, and then sampled a small bite of the chocolate peanut butter. Neither were overly sweet, like some versions can be, and both were tasty. My favorite was the chocolate peanut butter one.
The s'mores brownie was the most decadent treat I ordered, and while it was sweet (and oh-sooooo-good!), it wasn't too rich or sickly sweet like I was afraid it would be. The combo of crunchy crust topped with a generous portion of gooey chocolate brownie topped by a toasted marshmallow layer was definitely something I would order again!
I also sampled a small bite of the cheesecake, which is one of Sift + Pour's signature items. The taste and texture and were both spot-on, and I wished I could have eaten a whole piece. If you're a cheesecake lover, you can't go wrong with this treat.
I Don't Like Macarons (???)
I skipped the macarons altogether. I'm just not a fan. But then the owner challenged me. My head was already spinning from too much sugar, and I had already eaten more dairy than I should have, but, she was confident, and I couldn’t turn down a taste challenge ...
Skeptical, I took a little bite. Then another ... and closed my eyes in appreciation and foodie joy. Apparently, I didn't like the macarons I've tried in the past (too sweet and tasted like food dye).
But I DO like the macarons at Sift + Pour.
At least, I liked the lemon one. In fact, I LOVED it. Buttercream covered in a thin layer of fresh, house made lemon curd, sandwiched between two delicate cookies .... wow. It was my favorite thing there. Who would have guessed!? Definitely not me.
Vegan Banana Bread
The vegan chocolate chip banana bread (dairy-free, egg-free + gluten-free) is delicious and not too sweet. If you LOVE super sweet banana bread, this one won't be your cup of tea. However, if you like the lower sugar variety (like me), you'll enjoy it.
Gluten-Free and Vegan Options
Before I visited, I reached out to ask if they offered any vegan or dairy-free options. Yes — the chocolate chip banana bread! I didn't ask about gluten-free ... and it wasn't until I sampled about six items that I realized the majority of the items in the bakery are gluten-free (note: the cookies, cake pops and mini cupcakes are not, although there may be a couple exceptions you can ask about). Instead of shouting gluten-free from the rooftops, the bakery has a small "GF" in the bottom right of the gluten-free items' labels. Most people who visit will never know they're eating something gluten-free ... because their pastries don't taste "gluten-free." And those who do have a gluten issue will be thrilled to find this bakery!
Sift + Pour also offers both sweet and savory crepes (with gluten-free crepes available upon request). Sweet options range from crepes filled with Nutella, Nutella and banana, peanut butter and jam, "fluffernut," apple crisp, "chunky monkey" and more. Savory options include everything from a simple egg and cheese crepe to the "grazing goat" (a crepe filled with sautéed spinach, caramelized onions, sun-dried tomatoes and goat cheese) to the "royal club" (filled with roasted chicken, applewood smoked bacon, fresh spinach, avocado and cheddar cheese).
I had zero room left in my stomach to try any crepes after I had sampled so many desserts, but I plan to try them next time I visit.
Espresso and Tea
The "Pour" part of Sift + Pour includes a myriad of coffee and espresso choices plus about a dozen tea options. I ordered my favorite — an Americano. It was a generous portion, hot and delicious.
» View more pictures from Sift + Pour by clicking the slideshow icon in the floating menu at the lower left of your screen
» You can also read Kelly's review of Sift + Pour on her blog, Kitchen Gone Rogue, which has additional photos.