JoJo Part Trios: The Restaurant Takes Shape And Andrew Bell of NOSH Named as Chef
For Poupart, it's been a learning process.
"One thing I've learned from this is to keep my cool," Poupart said, "which is a good lesson for me, particularly given my history in the kitchen [laughs]. It has helped me learn to keep things in balance."
Although it's hard to imagine now, as he slouched back in a booth in jeans and sneakers, Poupart said the pace and stress in kitchens in New York would get to him, "I could be a monster at times. I don't want to be the monster like I used to be in New York [laughs more]. I'm older now and don't do all that anymore."
He has lived and worked in France, New York, LA, so I asked Poupart about his motivation to open a restaurant in Dallas.
"It's a very diverse city," Poupart said. "Dallas diners travel a lot and eat all over the world. Also, it's honestly a very friendly and classy city. As for the dining scene, there are some great local chefs."
With refined tastes and class in mind, Poupart has created an ambitious wine program, which is also a major element in the design and construction of the space at JoJo. Poupart invested in 10 iPads to guide diners through the wine list and will hire a sommelier to oversee the program. Poupart will have a glass or bottle for every budget and a bevy of options.
Wimberg will manage a small bakery in the back that, in addition to making fresh breads and pizza crusts for the restaurant every day, will also dabble in wedding cakes. (They already have an order for late October.) After Poupart opens his other new restaurant at the old Lemon Bar spot in the West Village, they'll move the bakery there for more space.
Aside from the extensive wine program, bakery and everything else going into JoJo, another issue that brings a sparkle to Poupart's eye is the pizza. In August he traveled to Wood Stone test kitchen in Oregon and spent a day in chef heaven trying different recipes and equipment. He's so proud of his new oven, which recently got installed,
they're going to have a customized JoJo Vespa and Smart Car to deliver pizzas to hungry office and house-bound souls.
As the end of construction nears, Poupart sees what's been on paper and in his mind is slowing coming to life.
"I'm so excited," Poupart said. "I look forward to putting all the stress behind me."