It was not your regular Sunday night supper in Round Top. No down-home food here, as The Halles looked East, far East in fact for its inaugural Benjamin Moore Designer Dinner.

Adding energy to this spring at The Halles — PaperCity’s mini version of Texas Design Week in the country — acclaimed AD 100 home-decor talents architect Bobby McAlpine and designer Suzanne Kasler, both in from Atlanta, headlined this evening as guests of honor at The Halles, in advance of their talks and book signings the next day.

With Benjamin Moore, McAlpine, and Kasler on the bill (she, also a Benjamin Moore design ambassador), a bevy of brands stepped up as Texas Proud sponsors: Linda Plant Realtor, ELLIO Fine Art, Elegant Additions and Thorntree.

The Benjamin Moore Designer Dinner also saluted the Colors of Round Top, a concept created by Houston designer Mary Lambrakos in 2021, who was in the design-focused crowd.

A Fare Extraordinaire returned to create its signature showtime dinner, this time manifesting a French-Vietnamese culinary outlook. Cocktail hour fueled by Grey Goose Vodka flowed into the three-course seated-dinner menu designed by A Fare Extraordinaire executive chef Ryan Bouillet: first-course ahi tuna tartare segued into miso-glazed black cod, with the dessert-course finale chocolate-ginger mandarin cake, each dish accompanied by wine pairings. The epicurean food was served amidst a beautiful tablescape devised by AFE, with flowers that bowed to the bucolic beauty of Texas from Houston’s Maxit Flower Design. Singer/songwriter Kristina Murray, in from Nashville — known for her recent album Southern Ambrosia — performed.

An unexpected touch, which paid ode to the global notes of this dinner was the Houston-based dance troupe Lee’s Golden Dragon, which performed a traditional Chinese lion dance, an art form that dates back 2,000 years.

See cinematic moments from the Benjamin Moore Designer Dinner here. Videography by Brian Nguyen, enMotion films.

Adding a visual component, Texas Proud sponsor ELLIO Fine Art curated a show from its stable on view throughout The Halles with works spanning Texas to United States and European talents including painters Yigal Ozeri, LaMonté French, Bruce Brainard, Eric Peters, Leslie Parke and Joan Steinman, and sculpture from Tara Conley, John Christensen, James Perry, Ender Martos and Jeffery Brosk. Houston sculptor Tara Conley — who’s done projects in Round Top for The Farm at Wellville — was in the crowd, to converse with collectors about her lyrical permutations in steel.

The final flourish of this night was also about doing good. A portion of ticket proceeds went to the nonprofit Fayette Community Foundation, which supports local arts, culture, social welfare, mental health, conservation and scholarship in  the Round Top area and surrounding communities of this unique and charming part of rural Texas. 

And the takeaways in the coveted goody box that each guest received as a parting gift: selections from MyDrinkBomb, a Grey Goose Vodka mini bottle, Mon Cheri Macarons, a bag of Vietnamese specialty VNILLA Philanthropic Coffee, perfectly paired with individually boxed Vietnamese Coffee cupcakes from Crave, all which made for a sweet adieu.

RT Seen: Round Top’s first couple, Mayor Mark Massey and Kasey Massey; team Benjamin Moore including Jose Veliz in from the New York area who heads ADR for the iconic paint company, Houston-headquartered Annie Miranda-Sommer, and Dallas-based JanMarie Yancovich; Realtor Linda Plant, seen chatting with Bobby McAlpine; in from Dallas Zoe Bonnette, who’s getting to be a Round Top regular along with Doniphan MooreTanner Moussa, and Michelle Moussa; OKA’s Brenda Houston and Aran Winterbottom; Halles exhibitor, lady of minerals Verona Disdier of Pierre Verona; ELLIO Fine Art’s Trish Matute, Brian FreezeHarwood Taylor, and Abigale Rigamonti; a cache of designers and the design-minded including Casa Branca’s Andrew Uihlein and Georgia McElveenCatherine Giuffre with Emily Carrere (showing at Marburger), Megan Hotze, Austin-based Melinda and John Thomas James, and in from East Hampton, Chesie Breen; and Houston talent, DUAL, who live-painted the fuselage of a plane for show-goers at The Halles, presented by Reeves Art + Design gallery, Houston.