It seems former Fish restaurant chef and partner Chris Svalesen likes to help those afflicted with a fishing Jones anyway he can. Svalesen says his new restaurant, dubbed Copper River, will be only the third restaurant in the U.S. (the others are in Seattle and Alaska) to serve fresh Copper River salmon year-round. But by the time Copper River opens in the former San Simeon space on McKinney Avenue this October, the commercial fishing season for this particular salmon will be over. It lasts just six weeks, from mid-May through June. So how can Svalesen deliver fresh fish all year long? He's struck an agreement with a noncommercial fisherman to supply his restaurant with some 150 pounds of boneless, skinless Copper River fillets every week. Hey, it's all totally legal, says Svalesen.
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"Authentic, authentic, authentic," chants Vicki Robertson when asked how the new Irish pub that she and her partner Jack Hanrahan are plugging into the old Clive & Stuart's space on McKinney will be different from the rest of Dallas' pub crop. Called O'Dowd's Little Dublin, the pub will be frocked with an interior completely crafted in Dublin, including tile, woodwork, and fixtures clipped from old Irish churches and schools. The interior sections will be shipped to the States in containers and reassembled in the space sometime in October. The menu, beer, even the management staff, will also be the real McCoy. Not bad for a pub birthed from a company called Hanrahan Investments, a Kansas-based firm that operates some eight restaurants and clubs in Kansas, Missouri, and Nebraska, including the first O'Dowd's in Kansas City's Country Club Plaza. Hanrahan plans to open another O'Dowd's in the Metroplex before venturing to St. Louis and other cities.
Front man flip
It's been three months since chef Mark Jensen swapped his toque for management duds. Jensen, who owned the defunct wine bar Mark's on Henderson, is now the manager of Marty's Winebar, a position he lunged at after his short griddle romp at Eastside Grill on Henderson. "I kind of missed the gourmet end of it," he admits. "I was gettin' kind of bored. I'd flipped enough hamburgers, and that's all they wanted over there." But how does this respite satisfy his gourmet yen? At Marty's, Jensen says, he has no influence over the menu, just service and floor management. Still, the position, which he calls lucrative, has its good points. "It's kind of refreshing to be out of the kitchen for a while. But I do kind of miss cooking."