Mark Maguire, founder of Maguire's Regional Cuisine in North Dallas, is dressing down. Not changing from button-downs to Kid Rock pop-top tank tops, but from North Dallas to Uptown. Maguire calls his shift Maguire's "M" Grill & Tap, a casual departure set to open in early November in the space formerly occupied by Arcodoro/Pomodoro. Maguire says "M" will focus on "chef-driven" staples like pork chops, meat loaf, Philly cheese-steak sandwiches, wings, po' boys and a variety of burgers. "The menu is going to definitely be scaled back," Maguire insists. "We aren't going to serve pretentious food with the most exotic ingredients from the farthest reaches of the planet with names no one can pronounce." Maybe Maguire has never tried to say "Philly cheese steak" after chasing rye, for which there will be ample room at "M," a venue featuring a robust beverage program with specialty drinks, 15 draft beers and 40 wines by the glass. Partnered with his brother Chris and Maguire's chef Cherif Brahmi, Maguire says he's eyeing South Lake for another Maguire's location.
Star Canyon/AquaKnox/Routh Street Café founder Stephan Pyles has just inked a deal to develop a restaurant in Hotel ZaZa, the "urban lifestyle hotel" coming together on McKinney Avenue under the direction of Oklahoma City developer Charles S. Givens. It's called Dragonfly. (Hmm. The last restaurant we remember with that name was a trap on Greenville Avenue.) The deal calls for Pyles to create the culinary direction for the restaurant and bar, select the executive chef and oversee the development of the hotel catering menus. But the 144-seat Dragonfly will not only have the vaunted Pyles touch, it will also have a wine room and terrace dining overlooking an "urban oasis," which is maybe where the "lifestyle" part will be inserted...Jan Zwerver, former partner and general manager at Mustang Café in Irving, just opened Sonoma Grill & Wine Bar in Flower Mound, a town with liquor laws that can produce alcohol-free hangovers. It's not so much that Zwerver can't live up to his wine-bar moniker; he can with all of that private club rigmarole. It's just that local laws stipulate he has to buy his wines from local retailers instead of tapping the deep wine inventories of wholesalers, and that potentially limits his ability to build a wine library. True to the name, Zwerver has a 240-bottle wine list with half from Sonoma County, California. Bottlings from other California locales, plus France, Australia, Italy and Chile, fill in the gaps. Wines are paired with New American cuisine by chef Abraham Castillo (Chamberlain's, Breadwinners, Popolos).