New Restaurant Action

Downtown Dallas tycoon dreams up new restaurants for Design District

Downtown Dallas tycoon dreams up new restaurants for Design District

The Joule Lobby
Tim Headington will transport some of that Joule Dallas magic to the Design District. The Joule/Facebook

Because colonizing downtown Dallas with hotels, shops, and restaurants is not enough, developer Tim Headington (The Joule, Forty Five Ten on Main) has two new restaurants in the works, this time in the Design District.

Headington Companies will open two new eateries inside a 10,000-square-foot complex designed by Seattle-based Olson Kundig: Wheelhouse, a modern gastropub, and Sassetta, an Italian restaurant.

The company describes Wheelhouse as being inspired by the modern American gastropub, with an urban atmosphere. It plans to be open for lunch and dinner, with a menu that pays homage to bar culture, with distinctive takes on contemporary pub fare.

Design will be a mix of stylized industrial elements that include guillotine-style floor-to-ceiling windows that are mechanically operated.

Sassetta is both a picturesque village in Tuscany and the name of a 15th-century painter. In Dallas, it will be a multidimensional Italian restaurant that draws on a range of Cal-Italian flavors. The menu will reinterpret Italian dishes, including a pizza program, which they already feel certain will be "among the best in town."

The dining room will be relaxed yet elegant, with a mix of contemporary design with nostalgic, whimsical finishes. The goal: to function like an all-day cafe for those looking to linger.

The two concepts will sit side-by-side in the Decorative Center at Oak Lawn and Hi Line, with a breezeway cutting in between, where they can host seasonal vendors to create a more pedestrian-friendly environment and send customers into the showrooms that are open to the public.

There are also tentative plans for a grab-and-go spot called Go Go, which would sell coffee, baked good, entrées, and more. It's forecast to open in early 2017.

These are in addition to a new restaurant and lounge called Mirador, opening on the fourth floor of the new Forty Five Ten on Main, to be operated by The Joule.

Mirador figured prominently in the store's recent opening party on December 8-9, serving passed fare and a Casa Dragones bar serving tequila.

Bites by Joule executive chef Junior Borges included a caviar station with crème fraîche, pickled shallots, and potato chips; baklava bites; brisket dumplings, shrimp and lobster dumplings, and chive dumplings; and a raw bar and sushi station with lobster rolls and mochi cakes.

The restaurants will join Raised Palate, the restaurant group that includes The Porch and Victor Tangos, which Headington acquired from founder Tristan Simon. It previously included Hibiscus, which closed in September, and Thirteen Pies, the Fort Worth pizzeria which has rejoined the Fireside Pies family, now owned by the Chalak Mitra Group, which also own Genghis Grill.

Headington was part of a group of investors that in 2014 bought a large parcel of property in the Dallas Design District, which runs 33 acres and includes more than a dozen properties along Hi Line Drive, Oak Lawn Avenue, and Stemmons Freeway.

He's also made a series of acquisitions of land along Ross, Field and Griffin in downtown Dallas, with an eye toward creating a mixed-use development.