Brant Wood (not the Wood in Deep Ellum's Trees) calls a portion of Café Brazil's business day "deep night," the wee-hour stretch when folks commune to work off whatever self-abuse they have inflicted for the evening. "We do as much business deep night as we do during the regular day parts," Wood says. Founded in Lakewood in 1991, the six-unit Café Brazil does all the parts: breakfast, lunch, dinner. It adds deep night at three locations open 24 hours: University Park, Oak Lawn and Deep Ellum on weekends. And Wood is becoming intimately familiar with the Brazil whole. The former chief financial officer of La Madeleine French Bakery and Café just led a buyout of Café Brazil plus The Dallas Baking Company, its wholesale bakery production facility, from owners Beth Weidman and Ernest Belmore (the pair bought it from founder Michael Tate in 1995). Backing Wood in the transaction is the Houston-based Main Street Mezzanine Fund, a private investment firm specializing in small and medium businesses. "We don't want to dramatically change," Wood says, though he did shut off beer and wine sales in the Richardson and Lakewood Café locations, the only units that sold alcohol. Instead, he plans simply to tighten business operations in preparation for expansion: in Dallas-Fort Worth and beyond. Plans call for the number of units to double over the next five years.
Consilient Restaurants founder Tristan Simon sold off the last Genghis Grill restaurant his company owned; the Addison unit was picked up by the Genghis franchisee operating the Northwest Highway-Technology Boulevard location. Consilient now owns just the franchise company. Since taking over the Mongolian grill concept from founder Jeff Sinelli last year, Consilient has expanded the franchise with two restaurants in Denver and units in Lansing, Michigan; Columbus, Ohio; and Nashville, Tennessee. Additional units are set to open this summer in Grand Junction, Colorado, and Grand Rapids, Michigan...Air gourmands: Jim White, former host of the defunct KLRD Restaurant Show, now hosts Making Reservations With Jim White, aired Monday through Thursday at 12:45 p.m. on WRR, Classical 101.1, and Fridays in the noon hour during the Classic Cafe. Darryl Beeson, former KLRD Restaurant Show wine geek currently popping and maybe sniffing corks at the Old Hickory Steakhouse in the Gaylord Texan Resort, hosts a food and wine show Sundays from 3 p.m. to 4 p.m. on KMSR, AM 990... Kelly Hightower (Sipango, Tei Tei Robata bar, The Mansion), new executive chef at Kismet Lounge on Lower Greenville Avenue, is poised to launch Saffron Room, a 30-seat Kismet attachment with Mediterranean Rim/Middle East cuisine, in two weeks.
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