Restaurants / Openings

Michelin-Starred Chef Danny Grant Will Open Two High-Design Restaurants With a View at The National

Monarch and Kessaku Are Set to Debut in Downtown Dallas Next Spring

BY // 12.02.20

Two-time Michelin-starred chef Danny Grant is bringing his talents to downtown Dallas’ The National, a careful renovation of George Dahl’s 1965 modernist masterpiece that’s been touted as the largest adaptive reuse project in Texas’ history. The new restaurants, Monarch and Kessaku, are scheduled to open in the spring 2021 on the 49th and 50th floors of the building, which also houses the new Thompson Dallas hotel.

Hospitality group What If Syndicate, which chef Grant, David Pisor, and Jim Lasky run together, is known for churning out award-winning dining destinations such as Maple & Ash (Chicago and Scottsdale) and Etta (Chicago). And though their new concept Monarch, a wood-fired, modern Italian restaurant, has been in the works for years, it didn’t find a home until the team connected with Shawn Todd of Todd Interests, which is responsible for the redevelopment of The National.

“I’m excited to be a part of the Dallas community,” Grant, a New York-native, tells PaperCity. “And to be doing something completely new.”

Monarch The National Restaurants
Monarch will be a modern Italian restaurant that serves handmade pastas, steak, and seafood at The National.

Monarch will be the larger of the two restaurants, situated on the 49th floor. The space features a wood-fired oven in front of the kitchen, as well as a shellfish tank containing fresh scallops, prawns, or King Crab from around the world — whatever suits the season, says Grant. The Monarch menu will offer a modern take on Italian classics like homemade pastas, steak, and grilled seafood.

Grant teamed up with chef Hari Chan for Japanese restaurant Kessaku, and describes it as a careful balance of traditional and modern. “We play off of each other,” adds Grant. A jewel box of a restaurant, the 50th-floor spot will offer sake, sushi, and cocktails with a killer view.

Kessaku The National Restaurants
Kessaku will be a luxury sushi restaurant at The National.

“The excitement goes beyond the dining experience. There’s much for guests to explore,” Grant says of the expansive two-level space, designed by interior design firm Simeone Deary and Heidi Lightner Architects. Connected by a grand stairwell (and a towering wine cellar), a variety of private dining rooms and well-layered, intimate lounge areas allow each visit to feel unique. “It’s like a place you’d find in a private London club,” he adds. “A cozy spot you can be excited to go to and show off.”

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