For most of the 19th century the most common ill-luck superstition was 13 at a table: If 13 people sat down together at a table, one would die within a year. So what happens if 13 people sit down at a table in a restaurant called 13? Does the solar system hiss and collapse into Las Vegas, or do the thirteens cancel each other out and everyone wins Powerball? It's called Trecé--or Spanish for 13--playing off the building's address (4513 Travis St.). But the restaurant that former Sfuzzi Chief Executive Officer Robert Colombo (brother of Ferré's Patrick Colombo) is carving out of the former Sipango space with pro golfer and tequila aficionado Tommy Armour III and former Sfuzzi partner Billy Solomon isn't about numbers. It's about beverages. All of the drinks will be made from fresh-squeezed juices. The restaurant, scheduled to open in June, is anchored by a tequila bar pouring more than 150 tequilas--one of the largest collections in the United States--some of which will be dispensed frozen through a tap. Headed by soon-to-be former Mansion on Turtle Creek sous chef Amador Mora, the food will be upscale Mexican, à la Rick Bayless' Frontera Grill in Chicago. Trecé's street stamp is a glassed-in patio with gas lanterns and an outdoor lounge with a fireplace. To create Trecé, Colombo has completely bored out Sipango and inverted the layout, planting the restaurant where the lounge was while installing Trecé's bar in Sipango's moribund dining room. He's also plastering over the used brick. "Everybody says, 'Why are you taking away the brick walls?'" says Colombo, who says the look is dated. "It reminds me so much of the Sfuzzi days years ago; we had all of that faux brick wall." To secure the space, Colombo had to convince Sipango founder Ron Corcoran to relinquish his grip on the nine years remaining on the Sipango lease. "That was his baby for a while," Colombo says. "At some point in time, you say, 'OK, I'm movin' on.'" Colombo is installing a second-level VIP lounge called the Rio Room.
Brian Perry, who was most recently general manager of Del Frisco's in North Dallas, is now general manager of Bice Ristorante, the new Crescent Court version of the Tuscan-ish restaurant that sprung out of Milan in 1926 and is now spread over the globe. Perry was with Del Frisco's for the past two and a half years following his 19 1/2 years at The Palm in the West End. Bice opens for business this week... Justin Beam, who managed the beverage programs for the M Crowd restaurants (Mercury Grill, Mi Cocina, Taco Diner) is now beverage manager for Craft as well as the Living Room Bar and the Pool Bar, all in the W Dallas Victory Hotel.