Leslie Brenner reviewed Stephan Pyles: She finds most of the food at the Dallas legend's eponymous restaurant "fine but not memorable," and questions whether the chef is neglecting his downtown restaurant in favor of newer addition Stampede 66. Ceviches "didn't have the finesse, nuance or personality" they did when she gave the restaurant four stars back in 2009, and modernist touches like bacon powder add little to the dishes they adorn, making "a convincing argument that molecular gastronomy is just about over." The restaurant's signature peanut butter and chocolate "heaven and hell cake" remains a winner, although service riddled with errors means you may not stick around for the dessert course. Overall, it's a three star review that reads more like a two star. [Eats Blog]
Scott Reitz checked out The Greek: The uninspiring cuisine at this One Arts Plaza restaurant "feels like Greek cruise-ship food," and the usage of commercially baked pita bread shipped in from Canada is frankly rather flabbergasting. Gyros are "are almost good enough to forgive the bad bread," and some entrees seem as though they're pre-prepared, causing Reitz "to wonder if the kitchen is relying on a bit too much prep." It is possible to assemble a satisfying pre-theatre meal, though, by ordering a variety of small plates like tender braised octopus, meatballs that are both "tender and filling," and lamb chops with polenta. [Observer]
Nancy Nichols went to 20 Feet Seafood Joint: Marc Cassel's newest venture, a "BYOB restaurant with no frills," is so bustling it can be hard to score a table after you place your order at the counter, but the food is worth the wait, including a fabulous lobster roll that's "as good a lobster roll as any" Nichols has eaten. Line-caught fish and chips is "hot and juicy," with a pleasantly crisp batter, and even non-seafood lovers will find something to like, from "a delectable falafel that is suitable for vegetarians" to the "top-notch ramen" with a broth that takes two days to make. [D]
Cathy Frisinger scoped out Chop House Steak & Seafood: Chef Kenny Mills' new restaurant is just down the street from his wildly popular Chop House Burgers, and this one seems destined for similar success. The popovers served with lemon-rosemary butter and a revolutionary salad bar featuring everything from roasted Brussels sprouts to kimchee get the meal off to a rollicking start; adventurous appetizers include bone marrow with toast points, sweetbreads, and lengua, plus a disappointing tuna tower. The main attraction, of course, is the hand-cut, trimmed on-site steaks that are grilled over mesquite, making for "a yummy crust"; despite the use of choice rather than prime beef, she "couldn't have asked for a silkier cut of beef" than the "buttery-soft" eight ounce filet for $24. While the food seems carefully thought out, Mills "needs to pour some of that attention into other details, including decor and air-conditioning." [DFW.com]
ELSEWHERE: Colette's Dallas Mexican Food Reviews raved over Javier's; Confection Confessions tried the desserts at Cafe Herrera; SideDish checked out a beer dinner at The Libertine.