Au revoir my friend
Popular Austin chef closes Brentwood diner in midst of tumultuous year
This year has been tumultuous for chef Philip Speer. In February, he suddenly shuttered his recovery minded food truck My Name is Joe. Now, according to Austin 360, his French-inspired diner, Bonhomie, has also called it a day after a little over a year in business.
The Brentwood neighborhood restaurant closed May 20 after Sunday evening service. The restaurant had been widely acclaimed by both local and national critics for its inventive menu featuring a mix of bistro classics like salade Lyonnaise and all-American burgers. It was perhaps best known for the pomme rösti, giant hashbrowns topped with everything from foie gras to caviar.
Speer did not share with Austin 360 the reason for the closure, but did say he was proud of what he was able to accomplish at Bonhomie. CultureMap has reached out to Speer for further comment.
The closure does not mean that Austin has seen the last of Speer. The chef is currently at work on new concept at the corner of Fifth and Colorado streets. The lot, which most recently housed a rotating fleet of food trucks, has been cleared out for construction of a restaurant and cocktail bar with a garden patio.
Although few details are known about the upcoming concept, it will be developed in conjunction with William Bar, owner of the nearby Garage cocktail bar and a partner in My Name is Joe.
Speer will also continue his philanthropic work aimed at helping those in alcohol and substance recovery. My Name is Joe partially benefited Smithville’s Comfort Cafe, a donation-based eatery that helps fund the Serenity Star Recovery center.
At the time of the food truck’s closure, Speer told CultureMap that he has not ruled out a brick-and-mortar with a similar mission. It’s unclear if the upcoming downtown concept will be just that.