Juan Jaramillo is back in the saddle.
Years after he led the kitchen at Reata, Jaramillo has struck steakhouse success again with his new Iron Spurs Bar & Grill in tiny Sansom Park.
Taking over the old Williams Ranch House, Jaramillo and Iron Spurs are drawing turn-away weekend crowds for inexpensive garlic-butter steaks, seafood, salads and weekend breakfasts.
This is the Jacksboro Highway, not Sundance Square. So steaks cost $12 to $20, topping out with an 8-ounce tenderloin at $26.
One recent night, the garlic-butter rib-eye ($18.99) was better than any at some fake chain "roadhouse."
The family-friendly menu offers everything from a $7 soup-and-sandwich combo to a huge chicken-fried steak or chicken platter ($9-$10), all served in an atmosphere that is more country cafe than cowboy steak palace.
But don't think Iron Spurs is like a Dixie House with steaks. Jaramillo surprises with dishes like the grilled shrimp appetizer with serrano-cheese grits, or the coconut shrimp with serrano coleslaw and habanero sauce.
Stepping up from his lakeside restaurant, Scampi's Cove, he has blended flavors of Southwestern "cowboy cuisine" with basic bar-and-grill items.
Reata customers won't find much that's familiar, but there are hints of his past workplace in the chicken-fried steak, the carne asada platter and the banana pudding.
Iron Spurs adds an entire seafood menu, including a tortilla-crusted salmon and grilled or fried shrimp, catfish or tilapia with homemade jalapeño gravy or diablo sauce.
In fact, just about everything comes with either habanero or jalapeño sauces or dressings.
On weekends, Iron Spurs' brunch opens at 8 a.m. with omelets, pancakes or an $11.95 rib-eye-and-eggs platter.
Iron Spurs is open for lunch and dinner daily; 5532 Jacksboro Highway (Texas 199), Sansom Park, 817-624-2664.
With the power of the Outback Steakhouse chain behind it, Bonefish Grill needs no introduction.
But the Southlake location of the Florida-based chain is more than just another seafood restaurant.
The wood grill adds flavor to the lobster tail and Kobe beef burgers, or even to a basic grilled tilapia sandwich ($11).
Don't miss the spicy-creamy "Bang Bang" shrimp or chicken appetizer ($5 on Wednesdays), or the rum-coconut pie.
Bonefish Grill is open only for dinner weekdays and Saturdays, but opens early Sundays for brunch. 1201 E. Southlake Blvd., on the Carroll Avenue corner in front of Central Market; 817-421-3263; www.bonefishgrill.com.
Some quick updates:
A Mellow Mushroom Pizza Bakers will come to downtown Mansfield at 100 E. Broad St.
A new Portofino Italian Grill, apparently not owned by the same family as a former Arlington Portofino, will open at 6115 Camp Bowie Blvd.
Work has begun on the new Twisted Root Hamburger Co. in Bedford, replacing a 7-Eleven at 2820 Central Drive.
Much-traveled chef Sage Sakiri's next restaurant will be Tribeca Bistro, the latest to occupy a space at 62 Main St. in Colleyville's Italian-themed village shops.
TruFire Kitchen from Dallas will replace Jack's Porch in Southlake Town Square.
Bud Kennedy's Eats Beat appears Wednesdays in Life & Arts and Fridays in DFW.com Weekend. 817-390-7538
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