Openings and Closings

Southern-Flavored Original Ida Claire to Open Among Addison's Chains This Summer

Addison (probably) has more restaurants per capita than any other suburb on the planet, but they generally tend to be of the chain variety. You can’t throw a chicken finger without hitting a Chili’s, TGI Friday’s or even smaller chains such as Yard House, but that doesn’t seem to dissuade hundreds of diners from piling into these restaurants for their Cheezy Blasters every Friday night. Now, Addison is getting a restaurant that is one-of-a-kind, for the first time in a long while.

In a press release sent yesterday, Fork It Over Restaurants announced it would be opening Ida Claire, a “south of ordinary” concept on Belt Line Road later this summer. Not surprisingly, the menu at Ida Claire will focus mostly on Southern dishes, with plenty of global flavors thrown in to shake up classics such as pan-seared trout and lemon meringue pie. Most important, Ida Claire’s menu will prominently feature biscuit sandwiches, which are inherently superior to all other sandwiches. Prepare yourself for a carb coma — Ida Claire promises these biscuits are gonna be big.

The bar program is likely the most exciting part of Ida Claire’s opening, thanks in large part to Addison’s desperate need for better cocktails. The bar at Ida Claire will serve classic cocktails, punch bowls and a variety of mint juleps. In keeping with the craft cocktail trend, the bar plans to make its own bitters and create its own in-house, botanically infused gin. For discerning drinkers north of 635, Ida Claire can’t open soon enough.

The aesthetic will also be deeply Southern, with “antebellum” influences and occasional indulgences in refined tackiness. A vintage Airstream trailer will be parked in the middle of the restaurant’s outdoor garden, available for patrons to reserve for private dinners and parties. If you can’t spring for dinner in a motor home, you can still enjoy the large patio planned in the garden.

Fork It Over Restaurants has already demonstrated its ability to open restaurants that people in Dallas and beyond really love, including Mexican Sugar, Velvet Taco and Whiskey Cake. Ida Claire, assuming that the food and drinks are as good as at the company’s other restaurants, is bringing water to a drought. Outside of Neighborhood Services and a few other spots, there just aren’t many great local restaurants in this part of town.

No word yet on when Ida Claire will open, but a quick peek at the property at 5100 Belt Line Road indicates that the construction is, for the most part, complete. Fork It Over has committed to a “summer 2015” opening. 
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Amy McCarthy