Reed Hearon, who got his chops as chef at Denver’s Rattlesnake Club and as a sous chef at Santa Fe’s renowned Coyote Café, is a believer in the virtues of Southwestern cooking. Authentic Texan that he is (his great-great-grandfather owned one of Austin’s first general stores), Hearon has long dreamed of coming back to the Lone Star State to open a restaurant. “We’re calling it either contemporary Western or contemporary roadhouse,” he says of the planned fare at the Goodnight Bar and Grill. Hearon has already perfected, among other items, a chocolate-mad hatter’s dream for the menu. This dessert may look like a hat but is actually a sumptuous gâteau composed of a light chocolate génoise, a creamy ganache mixed with powdered almond praline, and dark, rich chocolate cookies.

Reed Hearon’s Chocolate Sombrero—Recipe