For anyone tired of overpriced fried chicken, you're headed toward a delicious year. In 2017, Dallas diners will get to try a new Chinese-American restaurant, a French brasserie and an Argentine steakhouse, among other international delights.
Step outside your comfort zone and forget about Southern comfort food. Check out the most exciting restaurants expected to open in Dallas in 2017.
Seafood restaurant Water Grill has made the bold move to open its first Texas location in the beefiest part of Dallas. In its sliver of Uptown, there are more than six steakhouses, including the new, relocated Del Frisco's Double Eagle Steak House across the street. At Water Grill, you could order a steak, yadda yadda. But the allure here is its flown-in-daily seafood. Much is from California, and some will come from the gulf, says CEO Sam King.
"We're hoping landlocked Dallas likes this kind of thing," King says.
Glance at the oyster bar and you'll see fishmongers busily shucking -- a gourmand's form of dinner theater. The patio is perfectly Dallas, with comfy seating and a retractable roof that makes outdoor dining possible in any weather. Near the glassed-in kitchen, live lobsters laze around in large tanks. Give 'em a wave; soon, they'll be dinner.
- Open now at 1920 McKinney Ave., Dallas.
Those who follow the Dallas dining scene closely would be smart to watch chef Nilton "Junior" Borges. He helped Uchi earn five stars in its first year in Dallas, then he moved on to a temporary gig helping out Dallas darling chef Matt McCallister of FT33. Today, you can find Borges overseeing the Joule hotel's culinary adventures, which includes its latest restaurant, Mirador.
Located on the fourth floor of luxury retailer Forty Five Ten's new store across from the Joule in downtown Dallas, Mirador is a stylish spot to eat and drink. It might cater to the ladies-who-lunch set, though Joule execs hope it's also a spot for business lunches or downtown Dallas visitors. "It's supposed to be fun," too, Borges says; customers need not dress in their finest. Dishes, created in collaboration between Borges and Mirador chef Josh Sutcliff, include a farro bowl, tuna crudo, a lobster roll and chicken paillard. Light, simple and approachable is the aim here.
- Open now at 1615 Main St., Dallas, inside Forty Five Ten.
Sexy: That's the intended atmosphere at Circo, a French-Italian restaurant, lounge, spa and pool from the famed New York City Le Cirque brand. Le Cirque founder Sirio Maccioni is one of the grandfathers of fine dining in the U.S., and he has expanded his Michelin-starred restaurant in NYC to include locations in Bangalore and Mumbai in India and at the Bellagio casino in Las Vegas. Circo in Dallas aims to be a high-end restaurant "where you can also have fun," says Lauren Santagati, CEO of WhiteRoc Hospitality Group.
Guests will choose their own adventures at this 25,000-square-foot stunner: Dine in the restaurant or lounge at the pools.
The restaurant will have a Las Vegas feel, Santagati says. (And here's one cool twinge of Dallas: Hand-written letters from Jackie Kennedy to the Maccionis will hang on the wall. The Kennedys were friends with the Le Cirque owners.) The Dallas restaurant will serve classic Le Cirque recipes such as lobster salad, Mama Egi's ravioli with butter and sage, and crème brûlée -- which Le Cirque helped make famous in the '80s, Saveur notes. Plates could cost up to $65 each.
The pool and lounge areas, called Circo Beach Club, will serve a revised Circo menu. One pool will be glass-bottomed, visible from outside if guests gaze up. The other pool will be 8 inches deep, just enough for guests to get their ankles wet while they dine on tables and chairs placed in the water. Guests who want to leave the spa-like pool area and go to the restaurant will be able to change in the locker room, where there'll be a Champagne bar. Why doesn't every locker room have one of those?
- Expected to open in the spring at 2619 McKinney Ave., Dallas, inside the One Uptown building.
Harlowe MXM is a twofer: Harlowe is a restaurant and MXM is a bar. Both will be at South Malcolm X Boulevard and Main Street, hence the M-X-M name, in what's considered the epicenter of Deep Ellum. The restaurant, a sibling to Henry's Majestic in Uptown Dallas, will serve American food with an emphasis on woodfire cooking. It, like Henry's Majestic, will focus on a few must-have items, says co-owner Andrew Popp: "a good burger, a good sandwich and good fish." Owners plan to show off some of the original elements of the Deep Ellum building such as the graffiti on a brick wall inside the bar. The restaurant and bar will share a rooftop that totals about 5,000 square feet.
At MXM, Popp says, customers can expect a new theme every three to six months. It might open as a martini bar, then get reinvented as a tiki bar or a wine bar. Dallas bar guys Alex Fletcher and Josh Uecker will help with the themes. "I can't really give too much away as far as what the first theme will be," Popp says, "but it will be something exciting for Dallas, and something that is constantly evolving and changing."
- Expected to open in the spring at 2823 Main St., Dallas.
Pin Bullion near the top of the list of the most anticipated restaurant openings in Dallas in 2017 from one of Dallas' most revered chefs. Bruno Davaillon, the French chef who most recently ran the show at the Rosewood Mansion on Turtle Creek, made the bold move to leave one of Dallas' most famous restaurants to open his own. Bullion will be a contemporary French brasserie. "I want to put French back where it's supposed to be," Davaillon told Dallas Morning News restaurant critic Leslie Brenner in an exclusive interview in October. He plans to serve "French food the way I would eat it" at a downtown Dallas address that's getting a serious makeover. Expect dinner to cost about $75 per person, drinks included.
- Expected to open in April at 400 S. Record St., Dallas.
The owners of Henderson Avenue hot spot Gemma plan to open a new restaurant called Sachet in the Shops of Highland Park. The theme is the Mediterranean Sea, so that means food inspired by cuisines in Spain, France, Italy, Greece and North Africa, co-owner Allison Yoder tells restaurant critic Brenner. Yoder, a sommelier, is joined in the project by her chef husband Stephen Rogers. They plan to serve pastas, pizzas and seafood, with an emphasis on vegetables.
- Expected to open in early summer at 4270 Oak Lawn Ave., Dallas, in the Shops of Highland Park.
One of the biggest food-news stories of 2016 was when fine-dining restaurant Stephan Pyles closed in downtown Dallas. (Chef Stephan Pyles then opened his Flora Street Cafe a few blocks away, in the Dallas Arts District.) Information is still hush-hush about the restaurant going in the former Stephan Pyles spot, but we do know it'll be an Argentine steakhouse with a focus on steaks and family-style food. Corrientes 348 restaurants already exist in Brazil, and restaurateurs Alda Boiani and Sidiclei Demartini have decided to expand the concept to the U.S.
This Dallas restaurant is expected to seat 300 people and serve lunch and dinner. Its downtown location could make it a destination for business lunches or events as it will have three private dining rooms.
- Expected to open in the summer at 1807 Ross Ave., Dallas.
As-yet-unnamed Chinese-American restaurant
First, the surprising news: Remedy, a restaurant on Greenville Avenue's most successful block, closed on New Year's Eve. In its place, owner Elias Pope (who also operates neighboring HG Sply Co. and Standard Service in Rockwall), plans to open a Chinese-American restaurant with culinary director Danyele McPherson and former Victor Tangos chef Kirstyn Brewer. The menu is still in the development stage, but Brewer plans to do inventive dim sum, she told Brenner in a December interview. The stark change from upscale soda shop Remedy to unnamed modern Chinese restaurant has the potential to be interesting and influential on Lowest Greenville.
- Expected to open in the summer at 2010 Greenville Ave., Dallas.
The family behind fine-dining restaurant Oak in the Dallas Design District plans to open an Asian-inspired restaurant called Shodo on Turtle Creek Boulevard. It will have a "sushi component," owner Richard Ellman hints. Ellman and wife Tiffanee operate a host of other restaurants around Dallas-Fort Worth: Pakpao Thai (two in Dallas, one in Plano), El Bolero Cocina Mexicana (one, for now, in Dallas) and the Royale Magnificent Burgers (in Plano).
The Turtle Creek address was once set to be an Italian restaurant in conjunction with Dallas chef John Tesar. When Tesar parted ways with the Ellmans' restaurant company, Gravy 51 (as the restaurant was to be called), was scrapped. Shodo will be in a building across the street from the tony Rosewood Mansion on Turtle Creek. Richard Ellman says his restaurant is "not going to be an intimidatingly special-occasion spot." More to come on this one.
- Expected to open in early fall at 2911 Turtle Creek Blvd., Dallas, inside the Park Place on Turtle Creek building.
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