Dallas restaurateur Nick Badovinus opened Brass Ram — his ninth restaurant — in mid-November. The polished steakhouse has retro sensibilities and an intimate supper club feel, loaded with rich leather, wood and brick textures. It is located in downtown Dallas’ developing East Quarter on top of his National Anthem restaurant, which opened in fall 2021.
The bar at Brass Ram
Brass Ram’s menu features steaks, slow-roasted prime rib, a tomahawk pork chop, a French dip, French onion soup, scallops and roasted halibut. The wine list is extensive, and the cocktail menu features a martini section with four different preparations of the classic drink.
Dakar NOLA – New Orleans
After operating a pop-up concept since 2020, chef Serigne Mbaye opened Dakar NOLA on Nov. 23, serving a Senegalese tasting menu in a permanent space on Magazine Street. Before opening his new restaurant, the James Beard nominee for 2022 Best Emerging Chef worked at Commander’s Palace in New Orleans, as well as Michelin-starred restaurants in New York and San Francisco.
Chef Serigne Mbaye of Dakar NOLA
Dakar NOLA’s seven-course tasting menu features Senegalese food with a modern twist, often incorporating local ingredients. The menu changes regularly, but sample dishes include jollof rice, black-eyed peas with palm oil and crab, and red snapper with rof (Senegalese herbaceous sauce), parsley oil and onion-mustard sauce. Dinner costs $150 per person, and diners can book private tables or reserve a spot at the restaurant’s 10-seat communal table.
Lady Slipper – Bentonville, Ark.
Modeled after Prohibition-era speakeasies, Lady Slipper opened its doors in the historic Massey Building in downtown Bentonville on Oct. 26. It’s part of the Bentonville-based Ropeswing Hospitality Group, which also includes The Preacher’s Son, Pressroom and Record.
The bar at Lady Slipper
The art-heavy space features a 10-foot-tall portrait by Kehinde Wiley, plus floral compositions and mixed media works. In the kitchen, executive chef Arturo Solis is making plates that range from caviar service with pork rinds and crème fraiche, to a smash burger and steak tartare. Eight signature cocktails are joined by wines, beers, and sherries.
Avra Estiatorio – Miami
The Greek restaurant opened its first location in Manhattan in 2000, and today, it counts two more Manhattan locations and another in Beverly Hills. On Nov. 19, the brand opened its first Miami outpost in Sunny Isles Beach. Avra is a collaboration between restaurateurs Nick Tsoulos, Nick Pashalis and Marc Packer. The restaurant spans 12,000 square feet and has a 330-seat main dining room, plus a patio with oceanfront views.
Whole fish at Avra Estiatorio
Avra’s cuisine is inspired by Greek seaside tavernas, and executive chef José David Díaz’s menu features fresh fish, like branzino, red snapper and wild Dover sole, as well as less common Mediterranean fish like fagri and lithrini. Guests can choose their fish from an ice display and decide how to enjoy it: grilled whole over charcoal, deboned and finished with ladolemono sauce (lemon and olive oil), baked in salt, or served raw as a carpaccio or in a ceviche.
Pizzana – Dallas
Pizzana made its Los Angeles debut in 2017 and recently expanded to Dallas, marking its first location outside of California. The new outpost opened its doors Nov. 15 on bustling Knox Street and serves lunch and dinner seven days a week. The restaurant was conceived by Sprinkles Cupcakes founders, Candace and Charles Nelson, and master pizzaiolo Daniele Uditi,
Cacio e pepe and funghi pizzas at Pizzana
Uditi’s menu features starters like wood-fired broccolini, meatballs and a few salads. The “slow dough” neo-Neapolitan pizzas range from a simple margherita and a funghi pizza to a pie with homemade vodka sauce, smoked fior di latte cheese, smoked capocollo, salsa verde, and Calabrian chilies. There’s also the popular cacio e pepe pizza with two cheeses, Parmesan cream, and cracked black pepper.
Dorian Gray – Atlanta
Named for the Oscar Wilde character, Dorian Gray opened Nov. 25 in Atlanta’s Buckhead neighborhood. The restaurant comes from Serbian-born businessmen Bo Kvrgic and Nem Filipovic, and the cuisine, cocktails and music are meant to evoke European coastal restaurants in cities like St. Tropez, Monaco and Capri.
Duck breast at Dorian Gray
Executive chef Christian Evans worked in upscale hotels and restaurants across Atlanta, including the Ritz-Carlton and The Intercontinental, before landing at Dorian Gray. His menu includes Little Neck clams with leek-and-saffron cream, pan-seared scallops, a whole branzino, black garlic-rubbed Australian lamb, and duck breast with cashews, fennel pollen, ginger-parsnip puree and pickled golden beets.