SIMPLY CHIC: At Abraham Salum’s namesake restaurant, creative executives dine on dishes like grilled wahoo (below). photography by Doug Davis
 
WHY SALUM: If you’re looking for an interior designer to redo your corner office, the Dallas Design District would seem a logical place to start. Instead, try lunch at Salum. Chef/owner Abraham Salum dazzled Dallas’ top creatives at Parigi—an Oak Lawn stalwart—for years before going out on his own in 2005. Parigi has always been popular with designers, ad executives, and the like, and chef Salum’s comforting yet haute cuisine was a large part of that draw. Naturally, the crowds followed him to his new Uptown restaurant, making it an instant hit. Designer Julio Quinones transformed the drab shopping-strip spot into a chic destination with its gold tones, white leather banquettes, and glam yet contemporary decor. Salum’s open kitchen adds a splash of drama to the serene scene, making it a perfect place for entertaining guests, hush-hush transactions, or casual people-watching.

WHAT TO EAT: Much like the work of the designers that frequent his restaurant, Chef Salum’s creations are stylish but never overdone. Starters are as simple as country pate and baked goat cheese with roasted elephant garlic. Or you can opt for something more sinful like fried green tomatoes stuffed with crab and roasted red pepper remoulade. Lighter fare includes a savory spin on the classic Caprese salad, on which you can substitute pesto for balsamic vinegar, and sandwiches like Ahi tuna ciabatta and the grilled shrimp wrap with tomato relish. Heartier appetites with a creative bent will enjoy Salum’s build-your-own burger option, featuring ingredients such as marinated portobellos, Brie, and saffron aioli. Traditional entrees are an enticing lot, from the delicate prosciutto-wrapped black cod with white wine butter pan sauce to a clever spin on boring chicken. This one is pecan-crusted, served over a pumpkin croquette, and drizzled with balsamic demiglace. And though it’s hardly white dress shirt appropriate, the spaghetti and meatballs with spicy bacon marinara is worth the dry-cleaning bill.

WHERE TO SIT: The small dining room seats only 85 so wherever you dine, you’ll always be a part of Salum’s see-and-be-seen scene. For a more private affair, avoid the communal spirit of the banquettes and ask for a window perch. The natural light is just right for sharing color swatches and business talk.

SALUM
4152 Cole Avenue.
214-252-9604

THE FOOD:
Stylishly uncomplicated New American cuisine

THE COST:
$$ (Average lunch entree price: $13)

WHO’S THERE:
Dallas’s creative class

WI-FI: No

FULL BAR: Yes