Big news for acclaimed Oak Cliff seafood restaurant Driftwood: Chef Omar Flores and co-owner Jonn Baudoin are both parting ways with the restaurant.
According to Teresa Gubbins at CultureMap, Flores is leaving to focus on Casa Rubia and will be replaced by Kyle McClelland, who's returning to Dallas from Brooklyn. Meanwhile, SideDish reports that Baudoin is selling his share of the restaurant to Driftwood co-founder Sal Jafar II to focus on Casa Rubia as well as another upcoming Trinity Groves venture called Sugar Skull Cafe.
Jafar recently founded a new hospitality group called Misery Loves Co. with cocktail wizard Michael Martensen; said group will now manage Driftwood in addition to working on a new One Arts Plaza restaurant called Proof & Pantry.
Flores and Baudoin found instant success with their second restaurant venture Casa Rubia, which opened at Trinity Groves back in November and was recently named one of the best new restaurants in Texas by Texas Monthly as well as a semifinalist for a James Beard award. Morning News critic Leslie Brenner publicly ruminated on Flores' ability to run both kitchens recently, questioning whether or not he'd be able to maintain four-star standards at Driftwood while spending most of his time at Casa Rubia; now, of course that task will fall on the shoulders of new chef McClelland.