On the corner of Meadows and the Central Expressway, in the same plaza as Tom Thumb, a neat and tidy Tex-Mex restaurant opened at the end of last year. You might think the last thing Dallas needs is yet another Tex Mex restaurant, but open the door and you'll find plenty of evidence to the contrary. On a recent workday during lunch, the dining room was so packed the staff had a hard time keeping up.
Manager Gabriel Pompa worked the floor, greeting and seating customers, his button-down shirt an eye-popping pink. When he wasn't playing host, he wielded a pestle the size of a Gatorade bottle, making tableside guacamole.
Faux candles flickered from the walls that framed diners from nearby offices, visions of post-lunch naps dancing in their bellies. They chatted casually while scooping oniony salsa with sturdy yellow tortilla chips and nuzzled smart phones to fill the silences. One man turned his booth into an office -- laptop out displaying spreadsheets with his ear pressed to a cell phone while his tacos went cold. Every table was full but somehow the dinning room was still quiet.
Lunch specials run $7 or so -- this is Tex-Mex law. I started with brisket tacos that sat under the heat lamp too long. While I waited the lettuce wilted, and my avocado salad was lost. There was no gravy, and the tacos were small, but they were exactly what I was looking for, and left me enough room to try a second lunch special, just because. The enchiladas were draped in a sour cream sauce that was thick, with a lot of tang, but it was those beans that really got my attention. Thick, chunky, with a smoky bacon flavor, they were beans you actually wanted to mop up.
Based on these plates, Gabriela & Sofia's doesn't offer much more than your standard Tex-Mex restaurant, but if your cube is nearby, the restaurant is bound to end up on your rotation if it hasn't already.
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Gabriela & Sofia's Tex-Mex 10455 North Central Expy., No. 117, (214) 647-1033