Downtown Dining News
Pro football player to open restaurant venue in Dallas Hard Rock Cafe space
There's a high-profile restaurant with celebrity athlete ties coming to Dallas' Victory Park area: Called 9NINE Kitchen & Lounge, it's a new venture from football player Matthew Judon, a four-time Pro Bowl linebacker, set to open in the former Hard Rock Cafe space at 2211 N. Houston St.
The Hard Rock Cafe closed in 2019. According to a release, 9NINE will open in early March.
The release says that 9NINE Kitchen & Lounge hopes to guarantee a feel-good experience, tailored for young professionals and "those ingrained in the city's dynamic entertainment culture."
Judon is partnered with Robert Morris, Managing Partner responsible for day-to-day operations; and Shamar Willis, a Dallas native with experience in the music industry who is their Chief Marketing Officer and will oversee the entertainment component.
Their goals are lofty: to redefine the hospitality landscape in Dallas with core values that include compassionate accountability, a passion for serving, honest communication, diverse cultural experiences, and an unwavering dedication to providing quality dining and entertainment, with a commitment to excellence and a passion for creating a unique dining and entertainment experience.
Hopefully the food will be good, too.
The release does not have menu details but promises it will be diverse and innovative, delivering an unparalleled culinary experience.
The name 'NINE' stands for something:
- Niche Community
- Innovative Menu
- Nightlife Experience
- Elevated Entertainment
Old-timers might also remember that there was once upon a time a restaurant called N9NE, a glamorous steakhouse founded by the Chicago-based team of Michael Morton and Scott DeGraff, that opened in 2008 as part of the debut lineup when Victory Park first opened. What are the odds?
In a statement, Judon says, "I’ve had the opportunity to travel the world and experience some of the best food and entertainment across the globe. Those experiences inspired this venture. The 9NINE Kitchen & Lounge team is committed to creating an environment for professionals and entertainers in Dallas that can't be duplicated."