by Steven Doyle
You have most likely seen the new restaurant at 4218 Lemmon Ave in Dallas, and caved to caution with thoughts of the unfortunate restaurants that preceded Roux Bistro. And there were some unfortunate concepts that occupied that space such as Tallywackers. Or Lolitas. Or how about Cafe Cancun. Some spaces just have a difficult time with their tenants until something truly wonderful comes along, and that is Roux.
Owned by veteran restaurateur and delightful Greek Theodore Koutsogeorgas Roux has a unique niche in the Dallas market. Call him Theo, his surname might be a bit of trouble for some. And you will see him roam the floor, attending each guest with aplomb. He has been doing this since his days at Goldfinger. I recall Theo from his management work at Beau Nash, and the gentleman has owned his fair share of delightful restaurants, and still owns the Greek spot at Collin Creek.
The Roux menu can be a bit overwhelming, which often is not always a pleasure, but with each moment as you begin to gaze upon the one page power-packed with breathtaking selections you will most likely smile. You will think you came in for the gumbo, and there is one on the menu, however you will want to save your valuable belly real estate for something more like the selection of beautiful oysters that grace the menu. Blue Points, Wellfleets, and Sweet Jesus’ all expertly shucked, and believe us when we say that is an art form.
We began our meal with a combination of two appetizers that were beautifully plated as a piece of art rather a dining experience. Consider both the calamari steaks and the octopus. They are grilled, not fried, with a lovely marinade that leaves them spoon tender and a joy to taste. A true joy.
Fettuccine Fra Diablo
There is plenty of seafood on the menu which is plenty fine by us. Crab claws, crab cakes, lumb crab, jumbo shrimp, lobster tails and more all define the appetizer selections. You could spend your dinner entirely on that little section and be perfectly pleased. But there’s more.
There is a selection of tacos, burgers and sandwiches including po boys and a lobster roll that we will need to go back for on a totally separate assignment. And a soft shell slider – soft shells are just now in season and delightfully crisped by the chef for your amusement.
We enjoyed our house-made pasta dish, the Fettuccine Fra Diablo which was heaped with shrimp, mussels, crab and basil all seasoned with a light-handed tomato cream sauce. The chef knows what he is doing and we blessed him for that.
Selection was difficult with choices such as Lobster Thermidor, Pan Grilled Branzino, Rainbow Trout and Dover Sole. It was a Chilean Sea Bass kind of day and what an excellent choice it was. Ours was made with a sautee of spinach, onions, various mushrooms and basil with a slightly lemony beurre blanc. Winner. Do you ever get order envy from a restaurant? Perhaps your dining mate ordered better? This did not happen and everyone was pleased and sneaked sweet bites from the other plates with an approving nod and a smile. Roux is just one of those finds.
The wine list is good, it can see some excellence from where its perched. The bar is actually a perfect place to sit for a happy hour with an excellent view of Lemmon to watch the bustle of aggravation. A tiny bit of a schadenfreude experience while you taste your flute of late afternoon bubbles. The cocktail program was not in place during our visits and needs some work. Stick with beer, wine or a simple mix of your favorite booze for now until that is all eked out.
Check out Roux and support one of our truly fantastic restaurateurs, you will be happy you did.