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Run, don’t walk to new Zaytinya, the new Mediterranean restaurant from Michelin-starred chef José Andrés now open in Dallas Cowboys HQ in Frisco


Once you’ve built Michelin-starred restaurants, fed Puerto Rico and Houstonbattled the president and fought hunger, what do you do next? You take your superstar Mediterranean restaurant to Frisco. That’s exactly what chef José Andrés has done, opening a second unit of his runaway Washington, D.C. hit Zaytinya at the Star in Frisco, also home to The Common Table and The Dallas Cowboys World HQ.

With a stunning, high key design from Rockwell Group and a small-plates menu from Andrés and Zaytinya’s concept chef, Michael Costa, the 300-seat restaurant is where you want to be right now. We caught up with Andrés, Costa, Zaytinya’s master sommelier Andy Meyers and Zaytinya Frisco top chef Jonathan Thompson on opening night and came away mightily impressed.

The menu leans heavily toward Turkey, Greece and Lebanon, featuring dishes meant for sharing (and large enough to make that easy). In the hands of Thompson and Costa, hummus arrives impossibly smooth and creamy, perfect for schmearing on fresh pita bread or sopping up a forkful of red pepper harissa. Slow-roasted lamb shoulder, spun over a wood-fired rotisserie for hours, is the stuff of shepherd dreams. Then out came plate after plate of deliciousness:  crispy Brussels sprouts tossed with coriander, barberries and garlic yogurt; crisp-fried spanakopita; cucumber-dill tzatziki; grape leaf dolmades; seared Halloumi cheese with dates, pomegranate seeds, orange segments and mint leaves; grass-fed veal kibbeh; and still more pita. By the time dessert reached us, we had already surrendered to a bottle of GSM from Greece (only $65 on the incredibly affordable wine list) and an earful of stories from Andres, who was on hand for the opening and as gracious a host as I’ve seen.

Zaytinya’s senior director of ops, Stew Newbold, says the restaurant concept is in an expansion phase; the new Frisco location is the second in what may soon grow to a half-dozen across the U.S.

Zatinya Frisco is now open for dinner nightly.

And to all of those die-hard Dallas residents who swear there’s no reason to venture north beyond the I-635 Loop? Find a loophole. Zaytinya will easily secure a place among the best restaurants in DFW, and it’s not even in Dallas proper.

When a guy like Andrés opens a multimillion dollar restaurant in Frisco rather than Dallas, shouldn’t you reconsider your intransigence?

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