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Star Dallas Chef John Tesar Teases Potential Expansion Into Orange County

He may be eyeing space in Laguna Beach for the return of his restaurant Spoon

Top Chef - Season 14
John Tesar cooking
Photo by: Paul Cheney/Bravo/NBCU Photo Bank via Getty Images
Farley Elliott is the Senior Editor at Eater LA and the author of Los Angeles Street Food: A History From Tamaleros to Taco Trucks. He covers restaurants in every form, from breaking news to the culture, people, and history that surrounds LA's dining landscape.

Orange County’s hot dining scene could be in line for a big new name soon, as it seems star Dallas chef John Tesar is considering putting a restaurant in Laguna Beach. And not just any restaurant — this would be a redo of his shuttered seafood hit Spoon.

Tesar is best known today for his upscale Dallas steakhouse Knife, where his cooking has routinely landed him in the James Beard conversation. He’s also become a national figure over the years for his run on Top Chef, and a very public, very ugly feud with Dallas’s then-longtime restaurant critic Leslie Brenner.

Before much of that, Tesar was known as a force in the local Dallas scene thanks to his seafood restaurant Spoon, which shuttered after a few years despite, he says, still being financially viable. Since then he’s been hosting occasional Spoon pop-up dinners, and routinely teases a return of the restaurant on social media.

His latest musing about the fate of Spoon happened on Facebook, where he posted yesterday:

Spoon is Coming back ... but sorry Dallas I am opening it in Laguna Beach California #DanaPoint ... May 2018

Reached for comment, reps for Tesar say that may be a bit premature — he and his business partner are indeed looking for a lease in that area, but they say nothing is final or in any way confirmed. Tesar has been known to be a bit bombastic over the years, so consider this one tenuous at least until the sign is actually up over the door.