Nick & Sam’s Park Cities is now a full-on steakhouse with a new menu, new name, new focus

The Ohmi beef steaks that Taylor Kearney and Samir Dhurandhar serve at Nick & Sam’s flagship steakhouse in Uptown may be the best steaks in Dallas. They’re from Japan’s Shiga prefecture, sold by the ounce, and all you really need is a four-ounce strip steak to make your spine go tingly and your eyes roll back in your head. The kitchen normally spoons a bit of butter over their prime steaks, but the Ohmi needs nothing more than a sprinkle of sea salt and a crack of black pepper.

At the Nick & Sam’s mothership on Maple Avenue, that Ohmi will set you back $45 an ounce. But the same steaks, seared rare and seasoned the same impeccably correct way, can be had for much less — $30 an ounce — at Nick & Sam’s Park Cities. That’s not all that’s new at the N&S’s near Preston Center. The Grille is now a full-on steakhouse, with a new! improved! name (Nick & Sam’s Park Cities),  a new menu (which more closely matches the downtown mothership) and the creative juices of a new chef team (Kearney and newcomer Scott Townend).

Fish and chips are out; lobster and sea bass and ginourmous boiled shrimp are in. So, too, are roasted quail, whole roasted fish, lobster mac and cheese, and crispy-crunchy onion rings as big as bracelets. As you’d expect, all the usual Allen Brothers’ prime steaks (plus Ohmi beef– the strip loin is pictured above) are on the menu.

I like the changes. The prices are a few points lower than you’ll find at the original N&S, but the ambiance rates higher. So does the creativity of the new menu, which gives Kearney and Townend more room to play. That lobster isn’t just steamed; it’s glazed with a sweet and spicy Kung Pao sauce that sings. The buttery Chilean sea bass is enhanced with a dollop of garlic aoili and a few drops of chile oil.

“We want this place to stay a neighborhood place,” Kearney told me recently.  “It’s a casual steakhouse. You don’t need a collared shirt. And people seem to like the changes. We introduced the new menu two weeks ago and porterhouse steaks and lobster tails are flying out the door.”

(Also, their peanut butter cheesecake is the best damn peanut butter and chocolate dessert in the multiverse. Trust me.)