Last May, Jason Maddy left Oak. His departure was quick and remained unreported until Crave DFW broke the news. Then the rest of the Dallas fooderati went ape shit. No specific reason has been given for the departure, but co-owner Tiffanee Ellman confirms today that Maddy was terminated.
Since Maddy left, Thomas Gray moved up to the executive chef position while owners Richard and Tiffanee Ellman worked to find a replacement. Today they've announced Richard Gras would be taking over the kitchen at the popular Design District restaurant.
Gras comes to Dallas by way of Florida, where he has held the title of chef du cuisine at three hotel and resort restaurants. The latest was Jean George's J&G Grill, and before that he worked in two Ritz-Carlton hotels.
Gras is expected to start at Oak July 15. "Oak's mantra of simplistic elegance matches my approach to cuisine, and I am looking forward to being a part of a visionary and dynamic team that shares my ambitious goals," Gras said in the news release. Considering the praise showered on his predecessor, he has big shoes to fill.