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Written by Lori Moffatt

 Mpherson23Now that the dust has settled from the 4th annual Austin Food & Wine Festival, which took place at Auditorium Shores and Republic of Texas Park in late April, I’m thinking about all the things I learned and how to apply them to my everyday life.


Around lunchtime on Galveston Island, there are few places I’d rather be than bellied up to the long, communal table at Maceo’s Spice & Import Company, elbow-to-elbow with amiable strangers, waiting for my muffaletta sandwich to come out of the kitchen.


Lori Moffatt speaks with restaurateur Carmelo Mauro, whose Carmelo’s restaurant in the capital city dates to 1985, about his career path, life in Texas, and what inspired him to bring an accordionist into the fold.

modertartSummer is around the corner, and for travelers seeking a combination of outdoors fun and big-city attractions, Fort Worth may be the ultimate getaway.


Billy the Kid, one of America’s most notorious gunslingers and Wild West frontier outlaws, was shot dead in New Mexico in 1881 by Lincoln County sheriff Pat Garrett. Or was he?

dino3Our recent story on archeological sites in Texas (January 2015) included some information about the Bosque Heritage Museum in Clifton and its depiction of the area’s Horn Shelter Man, whose 11,000-year-old remains were found alongside those of a child in a cave not far from the Bosque riverbed.


Over lunch with some new friends from Laredo last spring, I learned of an event in the Gateway City that piqued my interest—the annual International Sister Cities Festival, which brings nearly 200 Mexican artisans to Laredo to sell their wares and show off their traditions. “It’s a big shopping party and my favorite event of the year,” one friend confided.


It’s one o’clock on a sunny Saturday in January, and I’ve come to San Antonio for the day to learn more about mezcal, that delicious agave spirit that’s the mysterious older cousin to tequila. It’s all part of the 4th annual San Antonio Cocktail Conference, a charity-driven, four-day party that presents more than 50 drink-related seminars to the trade and general public.

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“I spent a good part of my adolescence at the truck stop café, spending time with Tammy Wynette on the jukebox and gum-smacking waitresses, the fry cook in a floppy hat with a cigarette hanging out of his mouth.”—Chef Stephan Pyles


In our third installment of Cuisine Confidential, Lori Moffatt visits with Houston’s “Enchilada Queen,” restaurateur Sylvia Casares, about the importance of fat and salt, the benefits of a good billboard, lemon-based margaritas, and where to get great enchiladas in Brownsville.

MarshallSparklesOn the Northeast Texas town of Marshall—where I’m closer to the borders of Louisiana, Arkansas, and Oklahoma than the state capital of Austin—strangers call me “darlin’” and “honey,” and sometimes even “sugar.” And I like it.


After a couple of terrific meals at Laredo’s El Capataz, Lori Moffatt visits with chef and owner Roberto Gonzalez to learn about his influences, his challenges, why he left a renowned Manhattan restaurant to return to the border, and what he likes to do for fun when he’s not making culinary waves in his hometown city of Laredo.

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