Ocean Prime has a great location (the corner of Pearl and Cedar Springs in the heart of the hedge-fund ghetto), possibly the best steakhouse patio in town, and one of the best beef selections in town (including Rosewood and Niman Ranch products). And it has just made it all better. Executive chef Sonny Pache and general manager Walter Hatcher held an event this week to show media some of the additions to the menu.
The emphasis is on fresh local ingredients where feasible and enduringly enjoyable food preparation. Spring visitors should look for changes in all parts of the menu. Seafood-lovers will find blackened Texas redfish with a suitable charged up take on tartar sauce — jalapeño corn tartar, Florida grouper, and ahi tuna (with avocado, mango, cashews, and spicy sesame soy glaze). The latter is one of the best takes on ahi in town.
The steaks change less. Rather, our tasting was an affirmation of the enduring quality of favorite cuts like Kansas City strip and filet mignon. Add the Duroc pork chop onto this list. The meat was richly flavorful and perfectly cooked medium rare. There are lots of strong sides here. Especially recommended are the jalapeño au gratin potatoes, truffle mac and cheese, and creamed spinach. The tater tots are new and proved popular at our table, though I preferred the chophouse corn.
Desserts may require a separate trip to the restaurant. The servings are huge, and they are absolutely irresistible. Carrot cake, standing three inches high, was my favorite, but butter cake and chocolate peanut butter pie got a warm reception as well.
Cocktails must not be forgotten either. The margaritas and the gimlets are good.
Pache spoke about how much his menu had changed since his arrival in 2009. Overall, that reflects the Dallas dining scene as well. Ocean Prime continues to evolve it with new dishes every year.