dining4With each new menu — and he does a full overhaul at least three times a year — Andre Natera, exec chef at Pyramid inside the Fairmont Hotel, shows more polish. He’s in the season of his default skills with fall, serving up the kind of warm, autumnal dishes that breed feelings of hominess and comfort, which is not a bad thing if you’re staying at a hotel. The new menu, launched less than two weeks ago, has no weak spots — not in the delicious duck two ways (pictured below), where fatty medallions of breast and a confit ravioli dance atop a bed of lentils, nor in miso-glazed foie gras, punctuated by sweet dabs of apple gelee. Natera’s style is simple but not simplistic — it is approachable while still being inventive. (He’s ably aided by a dessert menu that’s worth a visit on its own.)

Restaurants inside hotels often have trouble generating traffic among locals; Pyramid is one that warrants a visit, even if you return home to your own bed at night.dining5

While Five Sixty is technically attached to the Hyatt, its position at the top of Reunion Tower — and its provenance as a creation of Wolfgang Puck — imbue it with an added cache. That didn’t help, though, when the Asian-theme resto attempted an American-style brunch a while back.

Consider, then, the dim sum offering, which starts this Sunday, Brunch 2.0. Here; bacon and eggs (pictured above) take the form of a thick slab of pork marinated in a duck-fat confit, crowned with sunny-side-up quail eggs. There are other, familiar items on the menu, such as the fried “purses” of lobster-shrimp spring rolls, but with 23 items to choose from, don’t feel you have to limit yourself. There are enough options here for a typical gay brunch with a very atypical profile.

— A.W.J.

This article appeared in the Dallas Voice print edition October 5, 2012.