The owners of SNACK, the subject of this week's review, have some work on their hands. Jon Stevens and Avner Samuel have had the doors open at their latest restaurant for eight weeks now and there are still signs the owners are trying to figure out the best way to make use of the space.
While researching the review I talked to Stevens, who admitted that even though he's opened a pair of very successful NOSH restaurants in Highland Park and Plano, there's still a learning curve with every new footprint.
SNACK was initially billed as more of a bar than a restaurant. Stevens hoped to draw from the same customers that can be seen getting sauced on the front porch of Hacienda on Henderson Avenue and other nearby bars in the neighborhood, slather them with top-shelf cocktails and then offer the occasional small plate for snacking. But customers have been opting more for a dine-and-dash than a drink-dine-and-lounge type of evening. And they're asking for bigger plates.
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What was once a list of specials, one dish for each day of the week, has been added permanently to the menu enticing customers to sit down and stay a while. But from what I saw across three visits most people don't linger very long. Hacienda on Henderson, Capitol Pub, and J Black's were filled with customers as I walked out of SNACK most nights. And NHS Tavern is expected to open after an extended remodel in just two weeks, which will only add to the competition.