By Amy McCarthy
By Scott Reitz
By Scott Reitz
By Lauren Drewes Daniels
By Alice Laussade
By City of Ate
As does the décor. Guest makes grand use of pedestrian materials. Light fixtures are formed from pressed paper. Tabletops are covered with pressed paper too, as is the menu. Colors are warm and earthy, yet vivid. Guest calls these splashes "a modern interpretation on Mexican colonial--reminiscent of a Mexican hacienda." Detailing, such as light fixtures and those paper sheathes, are handmade and imported from San Miguel de Allende, locking in the pedigree.
Other things are straight from Texas. Grilled Texas quail is slathered with thick queso fresco. The bird tosses a slightly livery flavor at the mid-palate, and the meat is tough. Plus the sauce treatment didn't perceptibly complement the ensemble; maybe it's too Texas.
But a fish special consisting of pan-fried trout blanketed in an avocado-tomatillo-butter sauce is compelling. The seasoning is subtle yet effective while the meat is moist and flakes under modest pressure. Then there's the grilled Angus flat-iron steak saddled to a chile relleno. The chile relleno was a bit dismal, soggy as it was near the base from the sluice flow of tomatillo sauce.
No matter. The firm strips of flat-iron flesh are rosy, rich and juicy. Which just goes to show ya: Everything in Dallas can be reduced, sifted and boiled down to tasty steer flanks. And at Café San Miguel, the journey to the meat through the piscatorial detours is compelling. 1907 N. Henderson Ave., 214-370-9815. Open for lunch 11 a.m.-2 p.m. Tuesday-Saturday. Open for dinner 6 p.m.-midnight Tuesday-Saturday. $$$