Ask biology-major-turned-chef John Peters to describe his close encounters with weird food and he’ll gladly tell you about the lemon ants of the Ecuadorian rain forest: “Kinda crunchy, with a hint of citrus.” Peters realized that he had no interest in science and landed a job in the kitchen at Dallas’s legendary Mansion on Turtle Creek, then worked with Grant Achatz at Trio and Alinea.

Now, as the executive chef at Powerhouse, Peters plans to carve his own niche. With dishes such as slow-roasted chicken thigh with root vegetables—no lemons, no ants—he wants Powerhouse to be “a celebration of theclassic American restaurant.” 215 N. Clinton St.; 312-928-0800.


Photograph: Lisa Predko