I had the good fortune to dine at Craft Dallas in the W Hotel earlier this week. I was planning on saving the photos and run an au revoir story the week they close their doors in August, but I am thinking I should entice, no, incite you to stop in for a final meal at this wonderful Dallas restaurant.
When I was working at the Observer’s City of Ate I interviewed Chef Jeff Harris who is now at Bolsa in Oak Cliff. Then I was able to check out the kitchen, which is as massive as you might think a hotel kitchen should be. There is something magical to me to experience the backbone of a restaurant up close and I am always personally drawn to the kitchen when accessable.
During the interview with Harris he explained that the restaurant was a bit misunderstood by Dallas. The beautiful dishes are massive and mostly meant to be shared. Steaks are served in giant copper terrines, sliced and served for all to enjoy.
To this day the restaurant takes advantage of local farmers and ranchers when possible. By closing, this will affect people like Tom Spicer who sells the restaurant their wild bunch of mushrooms. Please order this side dish when visiting Craft.
Craft also has a very good variety of unusual oysters available. Restaurants like Central 214 (Graham Dodds) and Boulevardier (Nathan Tate) will fill this gap. Dodds is now flying in some special seafood which we will discuss here next week, and Tate will soon open his doors to the new Bishop Arts restaurant and feature a raw bar with the more esoteric varieties of oysters.
So we bid Craft an early fond adieu, and look to the many new restaurants opening in the area to absorb the excellent staff.
A beautiful shaved winter truffle and crab salad
Pork belly was never so crisp and yet so lush and savory as this dish
Just before ordering the chef’s tasting menu, the table agreed we needed plenty of oyster and this lovely tourchon for the table to share.
Texas quail is prevelant on so many menus in dallas for a good reason. They are so moist and flavorful.
While many hotel restaurants are retoolling and morphing into steakhouses, Craft knew what was for dinner… beef.
Although we sampled many of the hose desserts made from Craft’s wonderful pastry chefs, this assortment of sorbets, both sweet and savory, were a colorful highlight.
I hope to check out Craft at least one more time before they close their doors in August, and trust you will want to as well. Lunch is a fantastic option as is Craft’s brunch.