Oak Cliff Restaurant Redo

Veteran Oak Cliff restaurant braces for dramatic overhaul under new ownership

Veteran Oak Cliff restaurant braces for overhaul under new ownership

S'mores at Tillman's Roadhouse in Dallas
One of the best known dishes at Tillman's Roadhouse was its s'mores. Tillman's Roadhouse/Facebook

After 24 years, longtime Bishop Arts restaurant Tillman's Roadhouse has changed hands and will undergo a comprehensive revamp within the next 60 to 90 days. According to a release, a new culinary team and executive staff will accompany "a refurbished structure, an innovative ambiance renovation, and a fresh new menu." Sounds delicious.

The new team consists of chef Jeffrey Kollinger and his brother Ross Kollinger, of Carrollton-based Spice of Life Catering and Innovative Hospitality Group, who purchased Tillman's from Dallas-based event planner Todd Fiscus and Sara Tillman, original co-owner and wife of the late Ricky Tillman.

"We are excited about this next chapter for Tillman’s Roadhouse," Jeffrey Kollinger says in a release. "This renovation will preserve the iconic footprint that Sara, Ricky, and Todd created in Bishop Arts, and allow us to expand into new concepts and inventive state-of-the-art cuisine."

Leading the culinary team will be executive chef Michael Morabito, who has more than 30 years of culinary experience, including tenures at the Rosewood Mansion on Turtle Creek, Colonial Country Club in Fort Worth, and a tutelage with Arnauld Briand of Lyon, France.

Morabito says he's confident that they will offer the best dining experience in Bishop Arts. "Dallas has fallen in love with Jeffrey's original catering dishes, and under his vision, our culinary team has been working steadfast to design a world-class menu," he says.

Items have already been added to the weekend brunch menu. Throughout the transition, patrons can expect to see adjustments in the menu selections, new weekday specials, and changes to the look and feel of Tillman's. A complete relaunch and grand reopening is tentatively scheduled for mid-fall.

Sara and Ricky Tillman were trailblazers when they opened Tillman's Corner in Bishop Arts in 1992, when it was still an area that made some visitors nervous. After Ricky died, Sara partnered with Fiscus and gave the restaurant a massive update: changing its name to Tillman's Roadhouse and executing a major redesign. They opened a branch in Fort Worth in 2009, and then replaced it in 2015 with a hybrid market-restaurant called Fort Worth Market + Table. That closed in June 2016.