I can hear the ground rumbling under the Hotel Joule. Word from the underground says Tristan Simon and Tim Headington are dividing the assets. Simon will take Hibiscus and Fireside Pies. Headington will take the hotel business. Press release could come any minute or I could have egg on my face and apologies to make by nightfall. Developing.
Update: Well, color me stupid. Leslie Brenner reports:
Headington Companies, which owns the Joule Hotel and the Lumen Hotel, has announced that Consilient Restaurant Holdings will no longer operate or manage any aspects of those properties, including the restaurants. That means that CBD Provisions and the Front Room will no longer be run by Consilient.
Headington still maintains, according to a press release offered exclusively to the Dallas Morning News, “a significant financial investment in Consilient Restaurant Holdings with founder Tristan Simon at the helm.”
Update 6:06PM: I just spoke with Tristan Simon. He sheds a bright light on the situation. “Consilient has been operating as a service provider, and nothing more, to The Joule Hotel and The Lumen Hotel, which are owned entirely by Headington Companies,” Simon says. “Ultimately, we couldn’t find a business structure for the hotel relationship, including management of CBD Provisions, that worked for both Headington and Consilient and decided to focus our the relationship on Consilient’s independent restaurant business, which is expanding significantly.” Consilient’s independent restaurant business includes The Porch, Hibiscus, Fireside Pies, Victor Tangos, and AF+ B. Consilient is also opening Thirteen Pies, an offshoot of Fireside Pies, and American Food and Beverage, an offshoot of AF+B, in Atlanta (fall 2014) and Houston (spring 2015).
There will be no immediate employee changes in the hotel restaurants since they have been employees of the hotels, not Consilient, all along. Michael Sindoni will remain Executive Chef of CBD Provisions. The Front Room will continue to operate with Executive Chef Tim Bevins. And chefs Greg Bussey and Matt Ford will continue to work at The Joule while it’s determined whether the Grasslands project will proceed.
Simon’s matter-of-fact tone on the phone gave me the feeling that he didn’t think this was really big news. However, the situation took a nasty turn on Saturday night when a local blogger hatched the news Simon had been ousted from Consilient without checking with Simon to see if it was a fact. The “news” caused employees to wonder about their jobs. Their announcement today was basically damage control. I think it’s highly un
mlikely the blogger will be invited to Simon’s Christmas party.