Food & Drink

A classic, straight up with a twist

Quietly open now opposite SMU, Hotel Lumen's The Front Room: A Park Cities Diner is a glass-heavy 60-seater supported by limestone walls and stainless steel pillars, and dominated by a tile-backed, marble-surrounded bar. Designed by NL Group (the Crüe behind Umlaut and ZaZa), the contemporary-feeling mid-mod interior's rounded off with white, cloth-less tables and high back chairs from design firm BOKA Powell, or, where Al retired after getting worn out by John McClane's shenanigans.Scott Townend (Craft, Ristorante Nicola) is serving updated classics, starting with sandwiches like a shaved prosciutto/tomato confit/gruyere/basil panini, pulled pork tacos, and burgers from the Maytag Blue Cheese to the bunless Naked, a fine opportunity to ply your date with the classic pickup line, "you are what you eat?". Step up to mains including chimichurri'd pork flank steak (w/ shredded potatoes, grilled onions, spinach), Chicken Paillard, and a locally sourced Frito pie (though technically, all Fritos are locally sourced).The booze program will hit you with both classics (Wallbangers, Aviations...) and "modern twists" like the Galliano/dry vermouth de Chambery/Pernod "Pegasus", the "Jalapeno Gingersnap Caipirinha", and the lime vodka/lime sorbet/Licor 43 "SMU Mustang Sally" -- an ode to a program that knows a thing or two about dying hard.Photo by John Beaty