Restaurants / Openings

Reborn Hotel Adds Another Top Chef to its Starry Restaurant Roster

Downtown Dallas’ Foodie Renaissance is Here

BY // 09.07.17

Downtown Dallas is on the cusp of a foodie renaissance. New arrivals like Mirador, City Hall Bistro, and Bruno Davaillon’s forthcoming Bullion certainly add interest to the neighborhood; but the long-awaited reopening of The Statler will make an even bigger impact on the downtown dining scene.

The iconic hotel and residences is returning this fall after 16 years of vacancy and a $220 million renovation. In addition to 159 guest rooms and 219 luxury condos, The Statler will include six new restaurants and bars.

Earlier this summer, the hotel tapped renowned local chef Graham Dodds as culinary director to oversee all kitchen operations throughout The Statler.

Now, another celebrated Dallas chef has joined the hotel’s team.  Chef Angela Hernandez is leaving her post as chef de cuisine at Top Knot to lead the kitchen at Fine China, The Statler’s new Pan Asian restaurant and cocktail bar.

Hernandez has experience at some of Texas’ most innovative and acclaimed Asian restaurants. Before her time at Top Knot, she worked as sous chef at Uchiko in Austin. Both restaurants are part of Hai Hospitality, which also operates Uchi.

“I am absolutely thrilled to have Angela heading up Fine China,” Dodds said in a statement. “She is immensely talented and so enthusiastic. I can’t wait to see the magic she brings to this project.”

Hernandez honed her culinary skills in kitchens in Los Angeles and New York City, where she worked under the infamous chef Gordon Ramsay at the London Hotel. Though she has extensive knowledge of Asian cuisine, the chef is excited to build upon her skills and experiment more with Chinese cooking. She hints that there may be a Chinese BBQ program on offer.

“From my background it’s been a lot of French, a lot of Japanese, and I’m half Korean, so I’ve grown up around that type of cuisine. But this is something that I’m very excited to [dive into],” Hernandez says.

“I think Chinese food is at a really interesting point right now in the industry. It’s becoming more progressive and open to interpretation.”

Fine China will serve lunch and dinner, and the cocktail bar will feature sake, Japanese whiskies, and high tea.

Hernandez says fans of Top Knot may recognize her personality on the menu, but she’s ready create something totally new.  “We’re excited about this concept. It’s going to be a fun restaurant for the city,” she promises.

Fine China will be one of the last restaurants to open at The Statler late this fall.

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