First Look

First Look: Dreamy Sueño Modern Mex-Tex in Richardson

Brochetas modernas
Brochetas modernas Angie Quebedeaux
Local restauranter Julio Pineda, who previously spearheaded Pineda’s Mexican Cuisine, recently opened  Sueño Modern Mex-Tex on West Arapaho Road in Richardson in the space formerly home to Pizza Americana.

Pineda and his father, Aureliano Pineda, who worked at Mi Concina for 20 years, always had a dream of opening a restaurant together. Along with several other family members, they have realized that dream with aptly named Sueño, which is Spanish for "dream."

The space is modern and comfortable. Some diners are dressed up on their way to an event at the Eisemann Center for Performing Arts, while others are in jeans and flip-flops. At dinner the lights are dim and the atmosphere is warm and welcoming, while at brunch there is natural light throughout the place.
click to enlarge The Godfather old fashion - ANGIE QUEBEDEAUX
The Godfather old fashion
Angie Quebedeaux
For cocktails, the house margaritas are a great place to start. A more adventurous option is the flor humo ($12.50), which starts with infused hibiscus Ilegal mezcal mixed with a homemade reduction of hibiscus and serrano agave, strawberry purée and fresh-squeezed lime juice and served with a crème brûlée pineapple.

La viuda ($13) uses Tito’s vodka, elderflower liquor and lime juice in a reduction of raspberry purée. The Godfather old fashion ($13) has orange and angostura bitters, organic agave and Hornitos Cristalino tequila.
click to enlarge Ceviche with citrus-marinated snapper. - ANGIE QUEBEDEAUX
Ceviche with citrus-marinated snapper.
Angie Quebedeaux
For dinner, we started with the ceviche ($13) made with citrus-marinated snapper, tomato relish and avocado. Their salsa Guerro is a thick green salsa, and if you prefer more heat than what they serve with their complimentary chips, you should ask for a side of it. It gave the ceviche enough of a kick without compromising the flavors of the dish.
click to enlarge Birriaquiles and eggs - ANGIE QUEBEDEAUX
Birriaquiles and eggs
Angie Quebedeaux
The birria stacked enchiladas ($16) has layers of homemade corn tortillas, short rib, Jack cheese and guajillo sauce. It is topped with a sunny-side-up egg and served with rice and beans. Thick chunks of short rib are nestled in between the tortilla layers.

The brochetas modernas ($18) are bacon-wrapped white Pacific shrimp, stuffed with Jack cheese and jalapeños (see photo at top). It takes talent to pull off this dish and ensure the bacon is crispy while not overcooking the shrimp.
click to enlarge Birriaquiles and eggs - ANGIE QUEBEDEAUX
Birriaquiles and eggs
Angie Quebedeaux
On the weekends, Sueño offers a separate brunch menu, alongside their regular menu. We added serrano peppers to their queso blanco ($7) for some added heat. For our entrée, we had the birriaquiles ($16), which is made with tortilla strips topped with short rib meat, crema and queso fresco, served with a molcajete consommé broth. We added a sunny side egg on top because it was brunch, after all.

We also tried the chilaquiles ($13), a stack of their homemade tortilla strips topped with roasted chicken and your choice of rojos or mole sauce and topped with a sunny side up egg, crema and queso fresco.

During brunch, their cocktail menu includes options like a bloody maria ($9) with Jimador Serrano tequila, fresh squeezed lime and grapefruit juice and their homemade sangrita mix. The sangrita verde ($9) and the sangrita roja ($9) are both fantastic options if you like savory and spicy cocktails.

They also offer a mimosa flight ($10) with a choice of raspberry, orange and tamarind mimosas. And if you like to drink your desserts, try the carajillo de horchata ($10.50), which is a mix of Liquor 43, Lockwood Bourbon Cream, homemade horchata and a shot of espresso.

Sueño Modern Mex-Tex, 800 W. Arapaho Road (Richardson), Monday - Thursday 4-9 p.m.; Friday 4-10 p.m.; Saturday 11 a.m. - 3 p.m., 5-10 p.m.; Sunday 11 a.m. - 3 p.m., 5-9 p.m.
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Angie Quebedeaux is a freelance food writer for the Observer. A "ragin' Cajun" from Lafayette, she's been in Dallas since 2002. She is an HR director by day and loves to “laissez les bon temps rouler.”