Oak Cliff Continues to Panic About the Future of El Corazon de Tejas

Is El Corazon de Tejas an endangered Oak Cliff restaurant? Owners say no, but a demolition permit filed with the city has Tex-Mex-lovers worried.
Is El Corazon de Tejas an endangered Oak Cliff restaurant? Owners say no, but a demolition permit filed with the city has Tex-Mex-lovers worried.
Courtesy of El Corazon
  • The questions about El Corazon de Tejas' future continue to fly as conflicting information swirls from all directions. After the Oak Cliff Advocate broke news last week that a developer had filed a replat for the land beneath the Oak Cliff Tex-Mex mainstay, City Councilman Scott Griggs posted this week that El Corazon has filed a demolition permit, which could signal that the historic building is one step closer to potentially becoming a CVS. "I am opposed to a standard construction CVS (the replat was filed by a CVS associated company) that will damage the character of our neighborhood at this location," Griggs wrote on Facebook. "While you can never legislate building and use, I don't know why CVS couldn't adaptively reuse the building as a CVS."

    We reached out last week to both the developer and El Corazon's owners but neither responded. CultureMap did speak to El Corazon's owners, however, and they say say the Tex-Mex restaurant is open "indefinitely" and that the permit was filed as a formality as business owners begin talks with developers. "We have opened the door for negotiating, and we're getting expressions of interest in ownership of the premises," owner John Cuellar told CultureMap. "A demo permit is a step by one of the many parties that have expressed interest in our property. But some developers request that we sign nondisclosure agreements, so I'm not in a position to talk about it."

    In the meantime, Oak Cliff neighborhood groups on Facebook are filled with diners mourning the loss of a place that may or may not be on borrowed time, while others argue that the Cuellar family has every right to jump ship.

  • Family-style seems to be a recurring trend in Dallas dining right now – Small Brewpub's new chef now offers a family-style meal service, and this week, The Rustic announced a new Sunday supper series kicking off on Easter Sunday. For $17.95 per person, groups large and small can grub down on fried chicken, double-cut pork chop, wood-grilled chicken and sides like mashed potatoes, jalapeño spoon bread, white hominy and steamed seasonal veggies. The new supper series kicks off every Sunday at 2 p.m.

  • Design District restaurant Oak has launched a new lunch menu and hired on a new chef de cuisine, according to a press release. Culinary director Jeramie Robison has hired Matthew Gold, with whom he worked at Uchi, as his chef de cuisine. Robison also issued a battle cry of sorts: "At a time when many restaurants are dumbing down menus to address a perceived shift in the market away from fine dining, we are seeking to stay true to our passion for global, contemporary and creative cuisine," Robison said in the release. The new lunch menu will include "items ranging from tomatillo gazpacho and cheddar mornay pretzel knots to spring shrimp orzo and a house-cured rib-eye Reuben." Robison is also working on a new dinner menu and is launching a sushi bar at the restaurant, according to the release.

  • Farmer Brothers, a national coffee supplier and distributor, is about to celebrate the opening of a new headquarters and roasting facility in Northlake, according to a press release. "Farmer Brothers’ new corporate campus encompasses roughly 538,000 square feet," according to the release. "The green bean warehouse has a capacity of 16 million pounds of green coffee storage, and the roasting plant will produce from 24-28 million pounds of coffee at full capacity."

  • North Dallas is about to get a new kolache spot, CultureMap reports. Zamykal Gourmet Kolaches, opening in late spring at 5181 Keller Springs Road, is "a second-generation version of a shop that was previously in Calvert, a small town outside Bryan-College Station," CultureMap writes. "Zamykal was owned by Jody Powers, aka 'the crazy kolache lady,' a native of Fort Worth who earned fame ... for her zany routine of dancing on the sidewalk to lure customers in." Powers died in 2015, but her family is carrying on her legacy with a new kolache shop that will include their family recipes and updated versions with more than 30 sweet flavors.

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