This Way In >>

Jonathan Thompson to lead the kitchen at Jose Andres’ new Zaytinya at The Star in Frisco

<img src=”×182.jpg” class=”alignnone size-medium wp-image-20035″ height=”182″ alt=”” width=”600″/>

Dallas chef Jonathan Thompson has been tapped to lead the kitchen at chef José Andrés’ Zaytinya restaurant, slated to open in early February at The Star in Frisco, a company spokesperson told EscapeHatch this morning. (I shot the images of Zaytinya Frisco (above) on an early December visit.)

Zaytinya Frisco will be Andrés’ first restaurant in Texas and the second location of Zaytinya, which garners praise from both critics and customers at its original Washington,  D.C. mothership. Zaytinya debuted there in 2002.

The menu zigzags across Turkish, Greek and Lebanese cuisines, which means Thompson will be putting out a lot of meze plates and aggressively seasoned dishes (yay for us).

Thompson says he’s been working at the D.C. Zaytinya for the last three months, getting a feel for Andres’ style and cooking. He’s now back in Dallas, readying Zaytinya for its February debut. He’ll no doubt draw on his experience cooking at Samar, Stephen Pyles’ now-closed Med restaurant whose dishes had a similar flair.

“I’m so excited to be opening Zaytinya in Frisco at this amazing location at The Star – an incredible development by the Jones family!” says Andrés in a press release. “I can’t think of a better home for this second location of my mezze restaurant.”

I wouldn’t expect to see Andres working the floor at Zaytinya Frisco, but if you do catch him there, don’t hesitate to engage with him. When I had dinner with him on opening night of his Bazaar Meats at the SLS Las Vegas, our conversation ricocheted from Americans’ love for dry-aged beef (in Spain, Andres told me, an aged steak means beef from an old dairy cow, not from a dry-aging box) to the array of wood-fired grills he had installed at the restaurant to his favorite restaurants in the world.

Great guy. Great chef. And Thompson seems like a great choice to lead Zaytinya Frisco.

Cover photo: Zaytinya Facebook,

Recently Published


Trinity Groves chefs Julian Rodarte and Aubrey Murphy launch Nitro Burger with one of the city’s best $8 burgers ever

Anyone who’s been to Beto & Son in Trinity Groves ...


VIPeek: The Finch at Mockingbird Station opens Monday with a veto-proof menu — and one irresistable entree you’ll only find in London and France

Good stuff. The folks at Milkshake Concepts, the locally grown ...


Restaurateur and seafood expert Jon Alexis, chef Stan Rodrigues score with new Tex-Mex spot, with two other big-deal concepts slated for 2023

Seafood guy Jon Alexis (TJ’s Seafood Market. Malibu Poke) has his ...


The best pecan pies you’ve ever tasted come from this restaurant’s pastry kitchen – and now you can take one home for Thanksgiving

The best… Maybe it’s the chill and the falling leaves, ...


How many nachos can you really eat? Test your limits at El Chingon’s FREE Nacho Day competition this Sunday

Yeah, we get it. You love nachos. So do we. But you’d never ...


West Texas vibes, killer elotes, smoked brisket tacos are winners at this Las Colinas restaurant

Verdict: Muy sabroso Open nearly four years, Las Colinas’ ...


2022 State Fair of Texas wraps up its 24-day run with big numbers. Here’s how many pounds of sugar were used to make all that cotton candy

The State Fair of Texas wrapped up its 24-day 2022 run Sunday with ...


Pete’s Dueling Piano Bar moving from Addison to this Frisco hotspot

Four guys, two pianos, free-flowing cocktails and Neil Diamond’s ...


This Nov. 10 Duckhorn/Certified Angus Beef wine dinner at one of DFW’s top steakhouses should go on your calendar now

One of DFW’s top steakhouses (my story in USA Today) and the ...