Chef Bruno Davaillon is looking for love. (Photography by Kevin Marple)

An Open Letter to Chef Bruno Davaillon

Chef Bruno Davaillon is leaving the Rosewood Mansion on Turtle Creek. I am going to convince him to stay in Dallas. Please join me.

Pea custard caviar. (Photography by Kevin Marple)
Pea custard caviar. (Photography by Kevin Marple)

Dear Bruno,

Or should I refer to you as Chef? Yeah, I probably should. I’ll start again.

Dear Chef,

Oh dear. That sounds too lovey dovey. You are dear, but my business here is serious. Let me try this.

Dear Chef Davaillon,

Dude! You can leave the Rosewood Mansion on Turtle Creek, but you canNOT leave Dallas. C’est absurde!

After you moved from Mix in Las Vegas to take over the kitchen at the Mansion in 2009, you raised the culinary bar in Dallas. You may not know this, but you are the only working chef in town who has ever earned a Michelin star, and you don’t even pretend to act like one! You are the Alain Ducasse of Dallas, yet you shun the spotlight and prefer to peel onions over working the room. That’s sick!

I understand the benefits and security of working in a hotel, but Bruno, I mean Chef, you deserve your own restaurant in Dallas. I’m sure you can convince a local investor to build you a temple and let you do your own thing in the kitchen and hire someone else to greet the public. Bring us fine French food! Cook like Ducasse!  Or make hamburgers. I don’t care, just please don’t move away. My French-speaking colleague Eve-Hill Agnus thinks you’re a genius and that’s something coming from her because she’s a genius. D’accord?

We need a glamorous, sassy French restaurant with a menu to transport us far from American comfort food. We’d love an all-French wine list. You can name your restaurant Loire. We know where that is! Or Sancerre. We drink it at the proper temperature! We’ll help you find French servers. If you desire the security of working in a hotel, uncover the hidden gem of what used to be the Pyramid Room at the Fairmont Hotel. We’ll locate that sommelier who wore gaucho pants and cherry picked wine from the top of his ladder! Magnifique! Do this for team Dallas.

If you go back to France, I might understand. You could make a fortune cooking Texas food in Gay Paree’. But I know you aren’t a sell-out guy. You’re a perfectionist with immeasurable integrity. We are your captured audience and willing to bow to your whims, whether it be a simple beef tenderloin with duck-fat fries or elaborate duck with cherry purée, red verjus, pepper, shallots, and a dash of kirsch. Feed our need.

You’ve got six weeks left at the Mansion. Please, allow this shameless plea to simmer in a copper pot for a while before you decide. Pursue your happiness in Dallas. If you build it, we will come.

Call me anytime.

Nancy

 

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