Ever-rising star and hometown hero Jason Dady is proof that San Antonio is set to become America’s next hot food city. Between showing off his mad skills on the Food Network’s Iron Chef Gauntlet and becoming a semifinalist for the James Beard “Outstanding Restaurateur” award, he still finds time to juggle two Italian restaurants, an ice house, a barbecue market, an oyster bar, a tapas eatery, a food truck, and (whew!) a catering operation. Since he obviously never sleeps, what’s one more restaurant?
Range, his first chophouse concept, opened October 2 in the Houston Street Embassy Suites on the River Walk in the former home of John Besh’s Lüke. Featuring Angus beef sourced from Cameron, Texas’ 44 Farms; Gulf seafood; and Hill Country game, the restaurant is traditional but unstuffy, with a herringbone floor, royal blue tablecloths and banquettes, and large photographs depicting Texas agricultural scenes. Large windows line the two-story space, keeping the darker decor elements from overwhelming the space.
The menu strikes the same balance, offering hearty Texas fare with a few surprises (like a tableside preparation of Japanese shabu-shabu) that will appeal just as much to your country club uncle as your celebrity chef fangirl mom. They’ll both appreciate the craft beer selection, draft margaritas, and roving martini carts — lending the place some old-school sophistication (at least until the third round).
The steak will come in a variety of cuts, including huge porterhouses and tomahawks, served with sides ranging from marble potato confit with bacon jam; beef tartare “parisa” with cheddar, poblano, and jalapeño; and a sweet corn bisque scented with basil. If you’re staying away from red meat, try a pan roasted chicken confit or a breaded Gulf red snapper with a lemon beurre blanc.
Sunday also promises to be a hit with a $55 brunch featuring a fried-chicken and buttermilk biscuit bar and Perrier-Jouët Champagne service. If you want in on the action, you should probably make that reservation now.