Le Cirque Finds New Life in Dallas This June
In 2017, New York City's seminal French restaurant closed its doors, after a 43-year run. Le Cirque, founded by Sirio Maccioni and taken over by his son, Mauro Maccioni, was a fine-dining institution that set the standard for haute cuisine well into the 21st century, with some of the biggest names in food coming out of its kitchen, including Daniel Boulud, Jacques Torres, and Geoffrey Zakarian. Alas, the rent was too damn high, which is a very New York story, but its legacy will live on—in a very tangible way.
On June 9, after a late-May soft-opening, Le Cirque will find new life in a somewhat unexpected city—Dallas—after roughly two years in the works, as the restaurant Circo. Le Cirques have also opened in Las Vegas, Dubai, New Delhi, Mumbai and Bangalore. At the Dallas location of Circo, the restaurant will occupy two floors of 22-story building on McKinney Avenue.
The restaurant will resemble Le Cirque in many ways, it seems. Chef Alfio Longo, who has worked at several Le Cirque and Circo locations, will helm the kitchen, and iconic dishes found at the original Le Cirque will appear on the menu, including lobster salad, Ravioli Mamma Egi, Trofie Pasta al Pesto, and crème brulée.There will be old-school tableside preparations of tartare and fish entrées, as well as "a white-gloved doorman and monkey-themed appointments reflecting the brand’s circus motif," according to a statement from the restaurant.
The Maccioni family closed the New York location of Osteria del Circo—otherwise known as Circo—in 2017, which marked another significant transition for the franchise. But perhaps branching outside of New York's notoriously brutal restaurant landscape is the wisest strategic move, and perhaps the novelty of finding Le Cirque outside of NYC will add to its appeal.
According to a rep for the restaurant, there are still plans for both the Le Cirque and Circo locations in New York to reopen on the Upper East Side in New York, and a new Le Cirque is planned to open in Beverly Hills. For the New York Le Cirque, a lease is currently being negotiated, and they are looking for the other two locations.