The flagship restaurant at Klyde Warren Park in downtown Dallas has been felled by the coronavirus: Savor, an upscale gastropub that opened in 2013, has been shuttered, and will be replaced in 2021 by a concept still to be decided.
Kit Sawers, president of Klyde Warren Park, confirms that Savor and Relish, its companion burger stand, will close on August 23.
"Like so many resturants around the country, they're closing due to the economic impact of COVID-19," she says.
John Muse, a member of the Woodall Rogers Park Foundation, created Savor in partnership with chef John Coleman, formerly of The Ritz-Carlton Hotel in Dallas. Muse also oversees the park's pavilion.
When Savor opened in 2013, we called it "a chrome-and-glass stunner" whose outer shell made of glass guaranteed floor-to-ceiling views of the park. The food & beverage program featured shareable dishes and wines on tap. Favorite dishes included deviled eggs and flatbreads.
While the park has been a hit, restaurants have not. Lark on the Park, the first restaurant to open near the park, closed in 2018, with owner Shannon Wynne stating that "nobody knew what to expect from Park visitors" when they opened in 2013. He replaced it with Miriam, a Mexican restaurant, in 2019.
Savor was a tenant at KWP, and part of its revenue is earmarked to help support the park's operation which relies on events, sponsorships, and the food operators onsite, which also include the food trucks that park there every day.
"It's really critical for the park to have a restaurant partner that generates funding," Sawers says.
Sawers says they're using the opportunity to rethink the concept and have hired a restaurant broker to help figure it out. They'll consider national and local operators, she says, but they'll definitely go for something more casual.
"Over the years, we've heard feedback that visitors would love a place where they feel comfortable coming in T-shirts from the park and being able to walk right in," she says.
In the interm, they'll use the space as a rental venue.
"When Savor first opened, we all took a risk, and now people are attached to the park and have strong opinions," Sawers says. "We're eager to turn this over to guests and ask them what they want there."