5 Things to Know About Stephan Pyles’ Flora Street Café

ZAGAT – June 7, 2016

After closing his eponymous restaurant this spring, chef Stephan Pyles has opened his latest culinary destination, Flora Street Café, in the heart of the Dallas Arts District on the ground floor of KPMG Plaza at HALL Arts. Here are five things to know before you go:

1. It boasts a culinary dream team. To bring his culinary vision to life, James Beard award-winner Stephan Pyles (above center) brought in chef de cuisine Peter Barlow (above left) from Chattanooga, TN, where he most recently worked as chef de cuisine at celebrated Easy Bistro and Bar. Ricardo “Ricchi” Sanchez (above right) is on board as executive pastry chef, a position he held at Nobu Las Vegas before his move back to his home state of Texas.

2. The space is filled with art. The interiors of Flora Street Café were designed with the concept of “food as theater” by Jim Rimelspach of Wilson Associates with lighting by Craig Roberts Associates. Among the many art installations is the focal wall (pictured above behind the culinary team), which is a three-dimensional silk tapestry by fiber artist Tim Harding meant to evoke stage curtains. Yet the real see-to-believe piece is the Shylight from Amsterdam’s Studio Drift. The kinetic, mostly silk sculpture illuminates as it descends from the ceiling in 10-minute intervals.

3. The food presentation is next-level. Pyles is known for his elevated take on Southwestern dishes, but the sophisticated presentations of his new creations are works of art to rival pieces hanging in the nearby museums. A prime example is his lobster tamale pie (pictured above). Served in elegant cut glass, the savory sensation may look like dessert, but once you crack through the ancho “glass” on top, you’ll find morsels of lobster and wild paddlefish caviar mingling with creamy, housemade corn masa.

4. There’s a seven-course tasting menu. For culinary adventurers, there’s a delightful tasting menu that takes diners through a diverse selection of five savory dishes that don’t appear on the regular menu, along with two desserts. Better still, there’s the promise of “chef’s surprises” throughout the experience. Full dinner and tasting menu attached.

5. Reservations are already hard to come by. The restaurant is only open for dinner service right now and Friday and Saturday reservations are already booked through at least July 1. Early-in-the-week tables will be a little easier to snag, but popping in when the restaurant opens at 4 PM and grabbing a seat at the bar is a best bet for lighter menu offerings.

The details: The 5,000-sq.-ft. restaurant features an exhibition kitchen and has seating for 76, which includes a 20-seat lounge and a private dining area that seats 24. Current hours are Monday–Thursday, 5:30–10:30 PM; Friday and Saturday, 5:30–11 PM. Closed Sunday. Lunch service launching in the coming weeks. Valet service available: $5 lunch, $10 dinner.