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Jul 19, 2006 01:49 PM


Urban bistro opened yesterday; the menu looks thrown together. Has anyone been? Overpriced like his other venture; Aurora? Is this a sign of Avner's success or demise?

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  1. Haven't been; but as Avner's involved, I plan to visit every other restaurant in town first.

    1 Reply
    1. Don't know if you've seen it yet, but D Magazine just selected him as the best chef in Dallas.

      Lord help us!

      7 Replies
      1. re: Kirk

        Good Lord. Just read Ruth Reichl's Garlic and Sapphires, and have so much respect for her for visiting and reviewing restaurants as "one of us."

        Do we have any anonymous reviewers in this area? I firmly believe that's why my experiences are so different from those I read about. What I'm getting is the real thing--what they're getting is very, very special treatment.

        I remember making eye contact with Avner at Aurora, and he just stared me down, nothing remotely friendly or welcoming about it, and food and service to match.

        You can bet your boots that D Magazine has never had the Everyman experience at Aurora.

        1. re: foiegras

          I don't recall seeing any photos of Mark Stuertz in print. I don't think he's totally unknown to restauranteurs, but at least he's not putting his image up in print, online, on TV, etc., like some others.

          I guess I'll be the lone dissenting voice on this thread, vis-a-vis Samuel. Despite the fact that his menus rarely align with my personal tastes, I think he's a talented chef. Almost every meal I've had at Aurora has been solid. That doesn't mean his restaurant is a great value. It doesn't mean he's a great businessman. It doesn't mean he's a great person to work for. But if the question is whether the guy has a palate and an ability to translate his ideas to the plate, I have to say, Yeah, he does. And a lot of Dallas chefs are lacking in one or both of those categories.

          Haven't been to his new place, but am certainly willing to give it a try (and, until then, the benefit of the doubt).


          1. re: Scott

            So, would you agree with D that he is the best chef in Dallas?

            1. re: Kirk

              I think he's a reasonable choice for that category. (And, since you're never going to get consensus, that's probably about as good as you can hope for on something like this.)


          2. re: foiegras

            My experience at Aurora was totally different. I'm certainly an "everyman" and was treated wonderfully at Aurora. Food was great, service excellent and "the great one" himself stopped by the table and was very gracious. Yes, it's overpriced, but in my opinion it's worth doing.

            1. re: River Rat

              I am having a credit card issued in the name of River Rat as we speak, so I can have your Everyman experience ;)

              Seriously, it may have been an off night when I was there ... but IMO the most expensive restaurant in Dallas doesn't *get* an off night, not when I'm spending my hard-earned money ;)

              1. re: foiegras

                Or . . . it may have been an off night when I was there. I hope your experience, not mine, was the abberation, but it's hard to tell. Guess I'll have to try again to see!

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          1. i haven't eaten at urban bistro but i recognize on the menu quite a few of the items he served at Cafe Med & Food to Go (the place he had back in 2003, on preston & royal i think it was)... "my mother's salad" for one

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