Culture / Restaurants / Openings

Dallas’ New Yellow Submarine Restaurant Turns into a Hot Reservation: Cars, Motorcycles and Elvis — This Chef’s Wild

BY // 04.01.17
photography Rachael Wise

Chef Nick Badovinus could have taken inspiration from The Beatles for his newest restaurant, Town Hearth: The focal point is a bright-yellow submarine plunged into a fish tank in the middle of the dining room.

There’s more: dozens of motorcycle trophies from a Badovinus family friend in Missouri; 64 glittering crystal chandeliers; a silver 1961 MG sports car facing the open kitchen; and Elvis-themed works commissioned by Dallas artist Jeff Scott lining the walls of the private dining room, which seats 10.

The idiosyncratic style and massive menu have made Town Hearth a highly coveted — even rare — dinner reservation since its late-winter opening in the Dallas Design District. On any given night, business tycoons and their Highland Park wives mix with pedigreed young socialites with recognizable names, and design types from the showrooms nearby.

Badovinus also operates Dallas hot spots Neighborhood Services, Montlake Cut, and Off-Site Kitchen. Here at Town Hearth, he delivers an impressive assortment of steaks and seafood.

A raw bar sparkles with fresh oysters, while apps include butter-garlic icy blue mussels, scallops and bacon drizzled in hollandaise, and white shrimp with fra diavolo sauce. Entrées range from gulf black grouper, lamb-shank shepherd’s pie, and a burger with Tillamook cheddar to filet mignon, a divine boneless rib eye, and boneless strip.

An extensive wine list — with more than 100 bottles of red alone — is complemented by a cocktail menu that calls to mind classic rock (There She Goes is composed of limoncello-mint granita and prosecco; Live at Budokan ’78 blends whisky, lemon, and chipotle pineapple water.)

And then there are the sides: Order the $18 dry-aged chili cheese fries. Feeling extravagant? The 1974 Ducati Sport near the front door could be yours for a cool $75,000.

Town Hearth, 1617 Market Center Blvd., 214.761.1617.

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