Stephan Pyles chose the various artists not only for their Texas roots, but also for their diversity in mediums to bring forth images from and around Texas.
The influences from his hit restaurant Star Canyon can be seen throughout the dining room. He has refurbished the original Star Canyon chandelier that sits once again above table 30. The towns in Texas were branded once again by the original artist Susan Browder and now adorn the wall right next to “The Shed” — a pine wood pavilion topped with a pergola with picnic tables below inspired by Pyles’ childhood trips to the lake with his aunt. The branded Texas towns were arranged so when read from left to right they unravel a short story of sorts-three are not towns at all, but last names of Pyles’ protegés-can you pick them out?
A focal point of the dining room is the raised ceiling that houses a wide open Texas sky above the steel and driftwood tree by Gary Buckner of Stash Design that will change from daytime to nighttime over the course of the evening. Buckner also designed a glowing metal mesh rattlesnake which changes colors from tongue to tail above a serpentine banquette.
The numerous small but important touches are peppered throughout the dining room. His collection of famous and infamous Texan characters are immortalized in hand stamped leather belt straps on the restroom doors.
Inside both bathrooms, there is a sexy surprise awaiting by local photographer Brandon Ramsey.
The Chicharrón pig by Sisa Jasper in front of the expo line is a salute to the importance of pork in the Texas culinary tradition.
Abstract relief sculptures of charging horses by Stephan’s friend and steel artist Santiago Pena sit above the exhibition kitchen. Twenty longhorns, in stampeding motion, are hung in suspension over the long Margarita and Taco bar. About half the horns, most 100 years old, are a gift from Mable Stanley, Stephan’s “other mother”
A band of back-lit, etched-glass, horny toads by Chef Pyles’ friend and glass artist Polly Gessell, swarm in stampeding motion on one of the Austin stone columns buy the bar.
Also above the Taco bar is a painting of cuddly mother and calf by Sherry Alexander.