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Star chef to bring ‘creative direction’ to The Movie Lounge

story by Michael Tilley
mtilley@thecitywire.com

Blythe Beck, a popular Dallas-based chef who stars in a “Naughty” national television show, is soon coming to Fort Smith to provide “creative direction” for the culinary crew at The Movie Lounge.

News of Beck’s limited stay – three to six months – in Fort Smith was first mentioned by Beck on her Facebook page and then picked up by arts and entertainment websites in the Dallas-Fort Worth area.

“This is a limited time engagement but I am so excited that I will get to see you all again and cook for you. Plus I am getting to work with an amazing staff, owner, and all new crew!! Dallas is my home but Ft. Smith is my new adventure,” noted Beck’s Facebook posting that was included in this story at CravedDFW.

Dwight and Lynn Curry, the brother and sister ownership team at The Movie Lounge, said they began looking at options in November following the departure of their full-time executive chef.

The Movie Lounge, located at 7601 Rogers Ave. in Fort Smith, contains a restaurant, bar, movie theater and meeting space. Epic Events, the meeting space area within The Movie Lounge, has more than 8,000-square-feet of space that can seat up to 350.

“We knew that our culinary team was strong ... they have more than enough talent to stand on their own. Not only can they prepare our menu, but they were creating some delicious features for us as well. So, before we hired another full-time Executive Chef, we wanted to give Blythe a call and visit with her about the possibility of working with us as a Creative Chef,” Dwight Curry noted in an e-mail interview.

The Curry’s had become friends with Beck through their involvement in the hotel and restaurant business. The initial conversation with Beck was just to seek guidance, but it morphed into a deeper involvement.

“We were thrilled to learn that Blythe was not only interested in helping, but that our timing was perfect as she just left the Palomar to develop her upcoming TV show; she is also currently working with two other restaurants, both in Dallas, helping them create and develop menus,” Dwight Curry explained.

Beck’s resume includes work at high-end Dallas metro restaurants like Hector’s on Henderson, The Mansion and, most recently, Central 214 inside The Palomar Hotel. She also is the star of “The Naughty Kitchen with Chef Blythe Beck,” a show on the Oxygen network. Her “naughty philosophy” is based on “pink, positivity and love.”

“I think Naughty is about showing up everyday in the world just the way you are,” Beck notes at her website. “I think everyday that you move through the world it is our privilege and gift to love on each other, leave things better than we found them and always find the pink, positive lining in every situation.”

Beck, in her interview with CravedDFW, said she was eager to help the Curry’s.

“I am still working on another project but this opportunity is one I could not pass up. This is the most beautiful space and kitchen I have ever seen. I am going to go consultant at a restaurant that has an amazing owner, crew and staff, they just need direction. It is the most opulent and abundant place I have ever seen and I could not say no,” Beck said.

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Beck will continue to work with The Movie Lounge even after her temporary stay ends, according to Dwight Curry.

“With Blythe's proximity to Fort Smith, we can continue our relationship with her after this time with us via regular visits here and by sending some of our team to Dallas. The idea is that our kitchen will function the way that many other ‘name’ chefs do when they have multiple restaurant locations, creating new menus and training local teams to execute them,” he explained.

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