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Chef and Knife Owner John Tesar Talks Meals at Home

Anyone familiar with the Dallas food scene knows the name "John Tesar."

He’s done his fair share of helming restaurants. He began his Dallas career at the infamous Mansion on Turtle Creek and since that time he has wowed the Dallas crowd with tasty morsels.

These days his restaurant Knife, located at the Highland Dallas on Central Expressway and Mockingbird Lane, is his baby. He recently created something else exciting: a book called Knife: Texas Steakhouse Meals at Home.

Tesar says the book has been a real blessing for many reasons.

“One reason was the support I’ve received from Flatiron Books,” he explains. “We worked really hard on it and I think that shows. Josh Ozersky passed away before he could write it, but Jordan Mackay is an incredibly skilled writer and really understood my voice and story. It’s a book of content and I hope that people pick it up to see for themselves. It’s more than just a book on steak.”

The book took 18 months to complete, and Tesar says to him the best part of the book project was telling the stories.

“It was sitting with Jordan and telling him my stories, and then actually being able to appreciate his talent to capture my voice. When I read the book, I thought it was myself talking but just through an editor.”

While steak is clearly the thing at Knife, Tesar is also interested in healthy eating and what that means in his world, too.

From a clean eating perspective overall, he explains, “Everybody knows it’s all about my relationship with 44 Farms and Heartbrand Beef. They both have the same feed program and they don’t use antibiotics or any chemicals. The feed program is very special and what we’ve learned is that the feed program is what’s serving us so well in the dry aging process.”

In fact, Tesar is so happy with his meat supplier he says he hopes there will be another book in the works soon about his involvement with clean eating at Knife.

“Hopefully [it will be] another book about dry aging with a professor from Texas Tech and Jordan Mackay. It’s a collaboration of dry aging.”

While this is Tesar’s first book, he has had his hand in other cookbooks with recipes. "But this is my first real cookbook,” he adds.

So now, with that first book under his belt, what was his favorite part of Knife?

“That is being able to tell people the real story of who I am and where I came from in the first chapter of the book,” Tesar says. "This book is the culmination of so many dreams, aspirations and days and nights of hard work. I'm so overjoyed I first got to share it with all my Dallas friends, who have supported me unconditionally in my adopted city that I now call home.”

In addition to Knife: Texas Steakhouse Meals at Home, fans will be seeing a lot more of Tesar and Knife in the near future. Knife, the restaurant, will be expanding to Willowbend Mall in Plano in early 2018. Rumor is there are some new locations in the works outside of Texas, as well.

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Wednesday, 26 July 2017