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Eats beat: If it’s midsummer, Restaurant Week must be near

Posted 8:20am on Tuesday, Jul. 16, 2013

Restaurant Week is our first harbinger of autumn.

The annual dining benefit kicks off in Aug. 12 with $35 or $45 dinners at more than 100 restaurants. By the time it ends Labor Day, we’re well-fed and ready for fall.

Reservations are open now for lunch or dinner at more than 100 restaurants, including about 30 in Tarrant County, where part of each check goes to the Lena Pope Home children’s agency.

For example, Grace in downtown Fort Worth will serve a three-course, $45 dinner opening with a choice of tomato soup, peach-arugula salad or fried oysters, followed by either a filet with polenta or branzini with squash. Dessert is a choice of carrot cake with rum-soaked raisins or chocolate pudding cake with Henry’s ice cream.

Grace is one of the fine-dining restaurants at the new $45 price point, and will serve the specials Aug. 9-31. For each dinner sold, a $9 gift — 20 percent — goes to Lena Pope Home.

Reata Restaurant keeps the $35 price, offering a three-course dinner with a salad; a choice of a 6-ounce beef tenderloin, pork shank or jalapeño-cilantro-crusted redfish; and creme brulee or chocolate cake.

Reata limits the benefit to one week only, Aug. 12-18. Of the $35, $7 goes to the children’s agency.

Among other menus: the Wild Mushroom Steakhouse in Weatherford goes French with a $35 special. Appetizers include a roasted pear with blue cheese or French onion soup, and one of three entrees —beef tenderloin, salmon with wasabi or coq au vin. For dessert, there’s tarte tatin.

The elegant Cacharel Restaurant in Arlington also stuck to $35, serving a choice of four entrees (peppercorn tuna, mahi-mahi, pecan chicken or tenderloin medallions in peppercorns). The dates are Aug. 12-24.

Yes, Cacharel’s dinner includes an appetizer (rabbit terrine, Caesar, spinach salad or gazpacho) and the restaurant’s fabled chocolate souffle as a dessert, or an option for coconut mousse cake or Bailey’s creme brulee.

In Dallas, the popular Al Biernat’s steakhouse has seven choices, including a Wagyu steak with blue cheese or grilled redfish over sweet corn risotto. The special menu also offers a choice of five appetizers and five desserts.

A few more choices: The local-minded Rosewood Mansion on Turtle Creek has scheduled a selection of entrees: chicken, pork or arctic char.

Stephan Pyles’ $35 menu is centered around either salmon, a short rib or a bacon-wrapped pork tenderloin with horseradish potatoes and pickled Texas blueberries.

The elegant French Room has a $45 menu with salmon, snapper, roast chicken or (for $55) beef tenderloin. Desserts include a Valrhona chocolate dulce de leche Bavarian cream with mango-ginger cake, or a Grand Marnier souffle ($5 extra).

Central Market also has “fourth course” coupons for the opening weekend.

For the complete list of participating restaurants, see dfw.cbslocal.com/krld-restaurant-week/.

Next up: ‘Go Texan’

Coming up first: the Go Texan Restaurant Round-Up, a similar event July 22-28 to promote state agriculture.

The Pappas family restaurants, Hard Eight Bar-B-Q, Cousin’s Bar-B-Q and tiny Potager Cafe are among restaurants offering special Texas-based menus to benefit the Tarrant Area Food Bank.

Grace will serve a goat cheese-stuffed squash blossom, tomato soup, Texas pork shoulder with polenta and blackberry crumble for $49; 817-877-3388, gracefortworth.com.

Bud Kennedy's Eats Beat appears Wednesdays in Life & Arts and Fridays in DFW.com. 817-390-7538 Facebook: Bud Kennedy's Eats Beat Twitter: @EatsBeat Get alerts at RebelMouse.com/eats

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