So, in 1994, Pyles opened Star Canyon, a place that positively shouted Texas, right down to the terra-cotta tiles, barbed-wire accents, and open hearth, which was straight out of the mammoth ranches of the Old West. Pyles unleashed his inner cowboy, creating one of his signature entrees: the cowboy rib eye, a 24-ounce bone-in mesquite-grilled steak, topped with a Medusa's tangle of crisp-fried, chile-dusted onion rings. He also invented the tamale tart: a soft shell of corn masa, flavored with red bell peppers and ancho chiles, filled with a savory roasted garlic custard; on top of it all sits a mound of crabmeat infused with the sting of serrano chiles. Bold tasting and long on swagger, it telegraphs Texas's bounty. It was here, too, that he created Heaven and Hell, a dessert of truly Texan proportions composed of alternating layers of angel's food and devil's food cake separated by creamy peanut butter mousse and enrobed in chocolate ganache.