Standard Setting

It wasn't long ago that chef Tim Byres was tugged from New York City into Dallas to fiddle with noodles at Tom Tom Noodle House, the casual West Village Asian restaurant developed by Triple R Group. But Byres, who also crafted the menu for Triple R's Nikita, wasn't able to hang onto all those R's, so he bounced around a while, doing a stint at Jeroboam among other things. Now Byres has embarked on the standard chef dream in a nonstandard climate: opening his own restaurant amid one of the city's worst résumé blizzards in recent memory. With his wife, Brianne, and one-time Nikita sous chef Carl Strelecki, Byres is launching Standard 2706, a midscale 100-seat American bistro set to open within the next couple of weeks in the former Deep Ellum Café space. According to Strelecki, who apprenticed under former Riviera chef Tom Fleming at the defunct Lombardi Mare, Byres has had the basic idea for Standard on paper since his days in New York, where he cooked at Thom, a Pan Asian restaurant lodged in a boutique Soho hotel. Both Byres and Strelecki are birthing Standard from their own pockets, which might become the chef standard in this era of shriveled venture capital and spooked investors.

Dallas has not been kind to brewpubs. The list of burped corpses--Moon Under Water, Routh Street Brewery, Yegua Creek Brewing Co. , Hubcap, Breckenridge Brewery, Copper Tank--is enough to scare the head from a lager. Yet TwoRows Restaurant & Brewery seems to thrive among the fizzy carnage. Since opening in Dallas in 1995, the company has planted TwoRows in Houston (1996) and Allen (2002), the latter sans the brewpub part. Now TwoRows is emerging in Addison near Trinity Mills and the Dallas North Tollway--and a big belch of a brewer it will be. Set to open by early September, the 10,000-square-foot restaurant and brewpub will guzzle nearly $4 million in investment capital before it's all done. "It's going to be nice-looking," deadpans managing general partner David Tiner, who has linked with the small chain's partners Robert Ross, Rusty Loeffler and Mike Brotzman for the new restaurant. Tiner, once an assistant manager at TwoRows in the Old Town Shopping Center and general manager of the Houston restaurant, says Addison will have the same food and freshly brewed beers as Dallas but will serve them with high-definition television, which means the Bud Light bubbles will come in ultra sharp.. . Rockfish Seafood Grill has landed Blue Mesa Corporate Executive Chef Bud Boswell as a chef-partner. According to Rockfish President Randy DeWitt, Boswell will run the Plano Rockfish until the company can build him a Rockfish of his very own.


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