In Texas, Mexican flavors and techniques infuse local cuisine with a sense of place, and provide a backbone of tradition for chefs like Chris Patrick. At Abacus in Dallas, Patrick’s menu is a nod to the great culinary cultures of the world. At home, he relies on a perfected masa recipe from his mother-in-law, coupled with a slow-cooked, classic barbacoa de brisket in banana leaves. It’s the kind of food that turns a dinner table into a giant magnet, and epitomizes the true soul of Texas dining.

Patrick grew up with his hands in Texas dirt, tending to the garden his mother maintained in their Athens backyard. His grandmother’s style of from-scratch cooking fueled by that garden’s gifts furthered his love of simple, elegant food, which has propelled him into any number of beloved Texas restaurants.

Maybe it’s his laid-back Texas blood—or maybe it’s that he’s a former Eagle Scout who studied music composition—but Patrick’s mindset in the kitchen is cool and collected, with a ferociously organized approach to creative pursuits. At Abacus, he pursues the cuisine of the Pacific Rim; at home, he revels in the Latin traditions of his in-laws.

Artist: Daniel Krall

Texas is where I was born—it’s where I grew up. My family and friends are here, and that support network is a very important part of life.

Chef Chris Patrick

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