North-American Food and Cooking

  • Blogs

    October 15, 2014

    Dinnertime at El Fenix Is Tex-Mex Heaven

    Follow the Cheap Bastard as she scours the city, looking for a good -- or at least non-lethal -- lunch for less than 10 bucks. Grandpa and grandma double-date count: 4 Praline count: 7 One could go to El Fenix at lunch. But it's much more fun to go for Old Lady Dinnertime (OLD). It's in the 4:50-5 ... More >>

  • Blogs

    October 1, 2014

    Komali Chef Abraham Salum Knows What Dallas Wants, Knows It Will Change Next Week

    When we talk about the burgeoning culinary scene that exists in Dallas today, it's sometimes easy to forget about the chefs who spent years trying to convince us that great food was worth a little extra cash. Abraham Salum's eponymous restaurant Salum has been a fixture of the Dallas food community ... More >>

  • Dining

    August 28, 2014

    Tex-Meh at Mesero

    Mico Rodriguez's latest gives Preston Hollow some much-needed Tex-Mex but fails to delight.

  • Blogs

    June 17, 2014

    Where to Find Pupusas in Dallas

    Pupusas are the unsung heroes of Latin cuisine. Their crisped exteriors may not entice like a taco filled with pork, pineapple, and cilantro, but this humble exterior belies a rich and meaty filling that is nothing short of magical. Corn masa is shaped into a pocket, filled with meats, cheese, and o ... More >>

  • Blogs

    June 10, 2014

    Chef Julio Peraza on How Komali Is Helping Dallas Learn to Love Real Mexican Food

    To say that Mexican food in Texas is in a period of transformation is a serious understatement. Tex-Mex restaurants that were inspired much more by Tejanos in Texas may have once been more popular than traditional interior Mexican dishes, but chefs like Nico Sanchez at Meso Maya and Abraham Salum of ... More >>

  • Blogs

    May 30, 2014

    Where to Find Poutine in Dallas

    Food trends come and go, but for the last few years poutine has been cropping up on menus across the country. Poutine originated as a lowly diner food for drunk Canadians in the 1950s, but chefs are adding their own upscale twists to the dish as it becomes one of the hottest food trends on American ... More >>

  • Blogs

    May 8, 2014

    Quiz: Am I in a Kickass Taqueria?

    All week at City of Ate, we celebrate the magic of the taco. Check back for more interviews, essays and maybe a list or two. Or maybe four? There are many great taquerias in Dallas. There are also many taco poseurs. Weeding out the bad places from the good ones is part of the fun of taco adventurin ... More >>

  • Blogs

    May 6, 2014

    The Favorite Tacos of Dallas' Chefs

    All week at City of Ate, we celebrate the magic of the taco. Check back for more interviews, essays and maybe a list or two. Or maybe four? In this week of all things tacos at the City of Ate, we queried local chefs on their favorite spots to land some tacos. Here's what they had to say: Oliver Si ... More >>

  • Blogs

    May 5, 2014

    Meso Maya Chef Nico Sanchez on Dropping the Tex and Making Tortillas by Hand

    All week at City of Ate, we celebrate the magic of the taco. Check back for more interviews, essays and maybe a list or two. Or maybe four? Dallas is famously flooded with goopy Velveeta queso and sour cream enchiladas, and certain corridors are lined with taquerias. But sit-down restaurants servin ... More >>

  • Blogs

    May 5, 2014

    An Ode to Elotes, the Street Taco's BFF

    Street tacos are glorious in and of themselves, but there is something equally delicious being served out of carts in front of taquerias across the city: elotes. In Mexico, this side dish and popular street food is typically served on the cob, but most versions you'll find in Dallas are served in st ... More >>

  • Calendar

    May 1, 2014
  • Blogs

    April 1, 2014

    Underground Dallas Chef David Anthony Temple: "Our Food is Better Than Yours"

    For someone who's never helmed a fine dining restaurant in Dallas, David Anthony Temple has a lot of opinions about the city's food and restaurants. Cooking under the nom de guerre Chef DAT, Temple has been hosting underground pop-up dinners across the city for the last four and a half years, and di ... More >>

  • Dining

    December 19, 2013

    In Deep Ellum, Alligator Cafe Has That Special Sauce

    And we're not (just) talking about the Voodoo.

  • Blogs

    October 4, 2013

    How to Talk to Your Friends When Your Friends Want to Eat Tex-Mex Again

    I realize that the following assertion will likely result in my being doused in hot lard and dusted in the crumbled tortilla chips, but it must be said: Eating Tex-Mex can be a serious drag. Please, Dallas, just put down the pig fat and hear me out. You should know that I wrote this guide at my ed ... More >>

  • Blogs

    August 20, 2013

    First Look at Campuzano Mexican Food

    On Wednesday evening, a new "Mexican" restaurant quietly opened within walking distance from Dallas Observer HQ. We'd watched with curiosity as the building at 2618 Oak Lawn Ave. made the transition from the former brick, beige and bland law offices of Robert S. Gregg to the new, stylized wooden fa√ ... More >>

  • News

    June 6, 2013
  • Blogs

    May 28, 2013

    Peak and Elm Caves: Chips and Salsa Now Served at the Tex-Mex Restaurant

    When Peak and Elm Cocina, the Tex-Mex restaurant on the outskirts of Deep Ellum, opened earlier this year, owner Jesse Moreno Sr. made a shocking announcement. Despite the menu featuring enchiladas, fajitas and other classics, the restaurant would not be serving gratis chips and salsa. See also: - ... More >>

  • Blogs

    May 9, 2013

    Finding Chicken Tacos That Don't Suck: Harder Than You Think

    Yesterday I was back at La Banqueta for lunch. While I was waiting for my plate of suadero tacos, I chatted with a few guys who'd stopped in to give the place a try. One of the gentlemen had obviously fallen in love with La Banqueta's delicious street tacos previously, and talked his officemates int ... More >>

  • Blogs

    February 11, 2013

    Six Restaurants for a Proper Fat Tuesday

    The Free Man Cajun Café in Deep Ellum is a small, dark, shotgun bar and restaurant with marginal lighting that keeps things dim, which is certainly a prerequisite for any proper New Orleans-ish bar. So, if you're going for a truly comparable experience, this is your place. Three Quarters Fast Jazz ... More >>

  • Blogs

    February 6, 2013

    El Ranchito's Beef Fajitas Beat Out Dallas' Popular Tex-Mex Mainstays

    Mia's, Rafa's, Desperados, Matt's, El Fenix -- certainly I haven't eaten all the beef fajitas in Dallas, but I've eaten quite a few versions. I've been looking for perfectly cooked skirt steak, and most renditions I've had have been extremely tough and dry. See also: - Tasting the Worst Fajitas Eve ... More >>

  • Blogs

    December 21, 2012

    For the Love of Deep Fried Little Debbie: This Week in Dallas Dining

    Hello? Is anyone out there? Is this thing on? It's quiet around the Observer today. The cubes are empty and everyone is tweeting about wrestling with TWA, Greyhound and other modes of transportation. I think the holidays are in full swing, and I'm excited to jump into the fray myself, but first the ... More >>

  • Dining

    December 20, 2012

    Soleo Steps Up

    Owners Maria and Roberto Velasquez started with a taco cart. Now they're in Preston Hollow.

  • Blogs

    December 20, 2012

    The Christmas Tamale Tradition: Grandma's Was Always Best

    The moment I realized that food comes from animals was during one of my family's tamale making sessions. I was about 4 or 5 and after waking from a nap I wandered down the hallway of the temporary trailer my grandparents were living in while they awaited the completion of their house on the family r ... More >>

  • Blogs

    December 20, 2012

    Dining Critic John Kessler Says Mi Cocina's Tex-Mex Doesn't Travel Very Well

    Certainly if there's one food genre Dallasites would defend to the bottom of a bowl of queso, it's Tex-Mex. My blog post that lists my nine favorite spots for sour cream enchiladas and beans drew scores of comments overnight. Most either professed a support of my picks, or demanding I be removed fro ... More >>

  • Blogs

    December 19, 2012

    An Englishman Reviews the Whole Christmas Tamale Thing

    Apparently you guys celebrate Christmas by eating tamales. No, me neither. I've no idea what you're doing. What screams Christmas about a tamale? I suppose you could take this reductionist argument to any Christmas food (what's Christmassy about slaughtering a turkey and then roasting it, or, as s ... More >>

  • Dining

    November 8, 2012

    Velvet Taco's Not-So-Taqueria

    Taco purists don't love this Henderson Avenue restaurant, but that doesn't stop the hungry masses.

  • Dining

    August 2, 2012

    Komali's Safe Bet

    An almost authentic restaurant panders to the local palate.

  • Blogs

    June 15, 2012

    Why Did Alice Cross the Road? To Get to Taqueria Mezquite.

    Times I kicked myself for every time I've eaten at Ojeda's in my life instead of eating across the damned street at Taqueria Mezquite: 126,229 Credit card machine count: 0 Taqueria Mezquite is across the street from Ojeda's. And you want it in your face. The murals on the outside say "Taqueria Mezq ... More >>

  • Blogs

    June 5, 2012

    Rock And Roll Tacos Opens The New Kitchen at La Grange

    Rock and Roll Tacos, previoulsy just a food truck, has completed their non-hostile take over of the kitchen and dining room at La Grange in Deep Ellum. The owners of La Grange wanted out of the kitchen (admitedly not their specialty) and the owner of Rock and Roll Tacos wanted a non-mobile kitchen w ... More >>

  • News

    April 5, 2012
  • Blogs

    March 5, 2012

    At El Padrino, Meatless Monday Means Meatless Tortas, and That, Oddly Enough, is a Good Thing

    After last week's vegan pho fiasco, I wasn't too jazzed about another meatless meal, but reading Scott's V-Spot review inspired me, and I was encouraged to seek out tasty vegetarian options once again. El Padrino means "godfather", and that awesome name was enough to get me to stop here rather than ... More >>

  • Dining

    February 23, 2012

    The Great Dallas Brisket Taco Hunt

    Five brisket tacos at five places in five hours: It's more meat -- and more fun -- than it seems.

  • Blogs

    January 10, 2012

    Meatless Monday Is Harder Than I Thought

    Ed. note: Along with our booze correspondent, food critic Scott Reitz is trying his mouth at going meatless on Mondays. They'll occasionally relay their experiences. So far Scott sucks at it. It sounded soooooooo easy. Drop meat on Mondays -- it'll help save the world and shit. And it's only one da ... More >>

  • Blogs

    January 10, 2012

    Despite Recent Closings, Cuquita's is Holding On by Serving Simple Food

    Cuquita's doesn't look like much from the outside. Just another strip mall Mexican place, right? I paid the restaurant a visit the other day on the recommendation of a friend. I wanted an excuse to eat outside the loop, and Cuquita's, on Josey Lane in Farmer's Branch, promised traditional garb and ... More >>

  • Blogs

    December 30, 2011

    Avila's Off-Menu Shrimp Tacos: An Appreciation

    Catherine Downes​On Thursday afternoon, a blackboard out front of Avila's Mexican Restaurant boasted -- in bright pink and blue chalk -- an enchilada lunch special. After being seated, and having chips and salsa thrust at me, I nearly ordered the enchiladas, but was swayed when I noticed anoth ... More >>

  • Blogs

    December 22, 2011

    El Pambazo Brings the Goods, Leaving You Muy Lleno

    ​ Each week, Justin Bitner goes hunting for DFW's most interesting sandwiches. Have a sandwich suggestion? Leave it in the comments and he'll check it out. Venue: Tortas La Hechizera Sandwich: El Pambazo ($5.69) Bread: Bolillo well-soaked in scarlet enchilada sauce Toppings: Chorizo, fried ... More >>

  • Dining

    December 15, 2011

    Meso Maya's Hands of God

    Behold, the truly hand-made tortilla.

  • Blogs

    December 9, 2011

    Raul's Corral: Tex-Mex and Giant Animal Statues. What More Do You Need to Know?

    ​Each week, the Cheap Bastard goes looking for a new place to eat a meal for less than nine million dollars. This week, she haunts Raul's Corral, 200 Corinth St., 214-428-4500. Her mind wasn't blown by the food, but it was kind of nicely felt up. Times I wondered if I'd seen this place in a m ... More >>

  • Blogs

    December 8, 2011

    The Phones Are Open and Dallas' Tamale Purveyors Are Ready For Your Order

    Flickr​Don't be the pinche gringo who jacks up your Christmas Eve celebration. It's tamale ordering time, and while some places make a few extra bazillion to sell to all the assholes who don't call ahead, others are more than willing to send you home tamale-less if you don't pick up the phone. ... More >>

  • Blogs

    November 25, 2011

    La Victoria: Man With 4 out of 32 Teeth Agrees -- It's "Yeeeeeees"

    Alice Laussade​Each week, the Cheap Bastard goes looking for a new place to eat a meal for less than nine million dollars. This week, she finds the man of her dreams at La Victoria, 1605 N Haskell Ave., 214-827-0101. Dinosaur toy guarding the barbed wire fence count: 1 Times I've driven past ... More >>

  • Blogs

    November 8, 2011

    Fried Chicken and Enchiladas: It's What We Do, According to Food and Wine and Serious Eats

    Delicious fried chicken as submitted by Bubba's Cooks Country​Dallas' food has gotten attention from all corners of the internet recently. Food and Wine put together a slideshow that compiles the country's 30 best renditions of fried chicken. Local favorite Bubba's Cooks Country is listed amon ... More >>

  • Blogs

    September 29, 2011

    Chef Nico Sanchez Interview, Part 2: On Getting Back to Basics with Authentic Mexican Food

    Chef Nico Sanchez of Meso Maya​Yesterday Chef Nico Sanchez of Meso Maya told City of Ate a bit about his background. In part two of our interview, we learn his thoughts on the Dallas food scene, particularly Tex-Mex, and the simple art of actually Mexican Mexican food. What are your three fa ... More >>

  • Blogs

    September 26, 2011

    A First Look at Meso Maya, the Latest Addition to Dallas' Actually-Mexican-Mex Scene

    Lauren Drewes DanielsCarne Asada at Meso Maya​Meso Maya, the new Mexican restaurant at Preston and Forrest, describes its food as an "adventure into the roots of regional Mexican food." Don't let that scare you off, though. No, the plates aren't covered in melted orange cheese, but I think we ... More >>

  • Blogs

    September 23, 2011

    The Free Man Cajun Cafe Brings Cajun Food, with a Side of Jazz, to Deep Ellum

    Lauren Drewes DanielsCranberry wheat bread pudding at The Free Man.​The other day I drove past The Free Man Cajun Cafe & Lounge in Deep Ellum, where Sol's Taco Lounge used to be at 2626 Commerce, and later Googled them to see what the buzz was. One reviewer wrote that they had the best bread ... More >>

  • Blogs

    September 21, 2011

    Wild Salsa Helps Dallas Wean Itself Off Tex-Mex With, You Know, Mexican Mexican

    ​Oh Tex Mex, must you be such a gut bomb? The heavy cream sauces, beans laden with lard and cheese cheese cheese. I've eaten at a few local spots, and while the selection in Dallas is undoubtedly better than other cities, it's still Tex-Mex. It's still a little boring. I like the flavors. I ... More >>

  • Blogs

    August 12, 2011

    Velvet Taco Is Open For Business, the Purity in Your Taco-Loving Heart Be Damned

    Chicken and Texas burger tacos​The hours are somewhat mushy, but this weekend things should be in full swing at the new Velvet Taco (3012 North Henderson), and the "open really late" line stamped on their black and yellow sign will finally ring true. This ain't no Texas taco. The menu details ... More >>

  • Dining

    June 30, 2011

    Cool & Hot Tacos Brings the Fire and Ice

    Delicious, trashy stand could be heaven, except that it let Alice in.

  • Dining

    June 16, 2011
  • Blogs

    June 7, 2011

    Free (FREE!) Food at Café Brazil Today

    Cafe BrazilHuevos Rancheros​Do y'ever do something nice just for the sake of doing something nice? No? Well luckily, the good people at Lower Greenville's Caf√© Brazil do, as today, they'll be treating any and all patrons to a FREE entr√©e from 7 a.m. to 4 p.m. During that glorious nine-hour ... More >>

  • Blogs

    May 5, 2011

    Five Tortillerias That Trump Tequila

    ​Today, we celebrate the victory of Mexican armed forces over the French. The event is usually honored with copious amounts of sour margaritas and bad Tex-Mex food. Take, for example, the Bob Armstrong Queso-eating contest at Mattito's Uptown. Not all must be sour day-glo beverages and paperw ... More >>

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