John Tesar
Chef, Restaurateur, and Author of Knife

Never one to shy away from controversy or the limelight, renowned chef John Tesar’s life choices are just as daring and bold as his cuisine. The four-time James Beard “Best Southwest Chef” semifinalist and Top Chef contestant specializes in modern American cuisine prepared with authentic European techniques, served up to his customers at his Dallas-based steakhouse Knife. John’s no-nonsense personality and sharp culinary perspective have garnered high-profile acclaim throughout his 20+ year career including national nods from Esquire (named to “Best New Restaurants” for two consecutive years), Food & WineNew York magazine, the New York Times, appearances on The Today Show and The Early Show, and winning the inaugural season of the Food Network’s Extreme Chef.


John Tesar opened Knife, located at the Highland Dallas hotel, to critical acclaim in May 2014. A reinvention of the steakhouse experience, the chef-driven restaurant features all-natural born and raised Texas beef, pork, and lamb in dry-aged prime cuts and specialty cuts. Named one of Eater National’s “Most Anticipated Openings,” Esquire magazine’s “Best New Restaurants,” Zagat’s “Hottest New Restaurants,” Maxim’s “America’s Best Steakhouse Specialties,” D Magazine’s “Best Steakhouse in Dallas” 2015 and 2016 and featured on Esquire Network’s “Restaurant Revolution,” Knife is John’s revolutionary steakhouse vision realized.


John received classical French training at La Varenne Ecole de Cuisine in Paris. An iconoclastic celebrity of the food world, he came up as a chef in New York City at 13 Barrow St, 44 & Hell’s Kitchen, Vine, and even cooked alongside Anthony Bourdain at the Supper Club. He eventually traded New York for Las Vegas to work with Chef Rick Moonen at RM Seafood. By 2007, John embarked on another major move to then up-and-coming culinary hotspot Dallas to take the helm at the Rosewood Mansion on Turtle Creek; there he would earn two five-star reviews.


With a steadfast focus on the future, John recently announced he is currently developing a television show and plans to expand Knife steakhouses nationwide. His first book was Knife: Steakhouse Meals at Home.

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KnifeTexas Steakhouse Meals at Home
Flatiron Books

No one cooks a steak like legendary chef John Tesar. In his first ever cookbook, Knife reveals Chef Tesar’s secrets to cooking the purest, beefiest, most delicious steak you’ve ever tasted. Infused with the flavor of Texas and Tesar’s culinary genius, Knife goes “Back to the Pan,” and shows you the method for cooking the perfect steak.

The Personal Story of the King of Steak
The Birth of American Food
The Science of Food: Fallacies & Myths of the Beef Business

Check out John on CBS’s The Dish and get access to exclusive recipes.

Read about John’s friendly rivalry with Katsuji Tanabe

Read about the expansion of Knife and John’s plans to open a burger restaurant in Plano

Read the Dallas Observer’s write up on John

Read a Dallas Morning News interview with John about his book Knife

Watch as John shares a recipe from Knife with Bravo TV

Listen to John on the Coarse Grind Podcast

Check out the Knife website

Watch John teach the audience to fry a perfect steak on Home & Family.

Learn more about John on his website and follow him on Twitter.

Advance praise for Knife: "I've had some phenomenal meals at Knife. Tesar really knows how to cook a steak, and this great book shows you how he does it!"
— Aaron Franklin, author of The New York Times bestseller, Franklin Barbecue

"John Tesar is a true-beef artisan and this book is a fantastic window into his world of explosive flavor."
– Adam Perry Lang, Chef/Owner APL Restaurant and Author of Serious Barbecue, BBQ 25, and Charred & Scruffed

Knife: Texas Steakhouse Meals at Home is a stunning tribute to steak and the intricacies of cooking cuts properly.”
D Magazine

"For those serious about upping their steak game, chef John Tesar's debut cookbook offers a crash course. [...] His 'back to the pan' method is a game changer."
The Dallas Morning News

"A meaty new instruction manual on how to sear up the world’s best steaks."
Eater Dallas