Openings and Closings

30 New Dallas Restaurant Openings are Hot in More Ways Than One

Elephant East is now open in the Harwood District.
Elephant East is now open in the Harwood District. Kathy Tran
A few weeks ago, we caught you up on new restaurant openings and a few closures, but news is still comin' in as hot as Nashville chicken sandwiches every day (yes, more of those too). Here’s the latest intel on Dallas restaurants and bars that have opened or closed in the last few weeks, as well as a heads up on a few super hot coming-soon spots.

After almost 25 years, vegetarian and Indian restaurant Cosmic Cafe has closed, and a donation-based yoga studio will open in its place. Hopefully, the bright, eclectic exterior decor will remain, as it’s become somewhat of a waypoint on Oak Lawn Avenue.

Sarah Blaskovich of The Dallas Morning News reports that family-owned Luna’s Tortillas y Hacienda restaurant closed on Oct. 31. Luckily for us, the tortilla factory at the same location remains open and will continue supplying tortillas (and tamales) to many restaurants in Dallas as well as the public.

Members of a Lakewood neighborhood Facebook group shared that Snowbaby has announced its last day of business. You can book catering events or get their unique condensed milk shaved ice desserts at the shop until Nov. 21 when it will close indefinitely.


Longtime Fort Worth burger favorite Fred’s Texas Cafe will close its location on Currie Street at the end of the year. A new larger location will open on Camp Bowie Boulevard next spring.

That brings us to the good news, which includes a few big names in the Dallas restaurant scene and more hot chicken news, which shows no signs of cooling off in popularity.

There’s a new ghost kitchen in town, and if you’re within delivery distance of a Blue Goose Cantina, you can order from Holy Taco Fields, which will specialize in birria tacos, burritos, bowls and margaritas. Look for Holy Taco Fields when you order from UberEats and DoorDash.

In other Tex-Mex news, Mi Cocina on The Park (2000 Woodall Rodgers Freeway) has opened in Klyde Warren Park. It’s huge, it’s gorgeous and you can dine indoors or on the patio. According to a sneak peek from D Magazine, the venue has another outdoor space, The Bar in the Park, which offers a view of the stage during performances. La Parada is a pickup window offering grab-and-go margaritas, cheeseburgers, brisket grilled cheeses and more.


The hottest hot chicken news is that while Nashville-based Hattie B’s isn’t quite ready to open in Deep Ellum, they’ll be doing three pop-ups in the area to help us warm up. This Friday (Nov. 5) they’ll be at Peticolas Brewing, and the Peticolas website also has the details on the other popups Nov. 6 and 7. After that, your next chance to stand in line for their oh-so-hot chicken may be when their Deep Ellum location opens in late February or early March.

Speakeasies by definition are supposed to be secret, and this one would be tough to find without some hints. Warstic (2900 Main St.), the baseball bat company in Deep Ellum owned by musician Jack White (huge baseball fan) and former MLB player Ian Kinsler, will celebrate its grand opening Saturday (Nov. 6). That’s foodie news because part of the game plan for this space is DBL HAWK Coffee and The Woodmen’s Lounge — a speakeasy in the basement with a full music stage and a vintage game room. Dallas Observer’s culture team has the story.
click to enlarge We're excited about Nick Badovinus' new spot, National Anthem, in the East Quarter. - TAYLOR ADAMS
We're excited about Nick Badovinus' new spot, National Anthem, in the East Quarter.
Taylor Adams
National Anthem (2130 Commerce St.), the first of several restaurants coming to the long-awaited East Quarter neighborhood of downtown, opened Oct. 6 without a lot of fanfare. Taylor Adams has a first look at Nick Badovinus' concept that has good cheer and good food in a historic building.

In the Harwood District, Elephant East (2850 N. Harwood St.) has opened with craft cocktails and a menu that includes steamed boas, Korean fried chicken, Singapore noodles, Chinese doughnuts and another pan-Asian fare.

Two Dallas natives have opened a wine bar in The Cedars neighborhood. The Dallas Morning News has the story on Distinctive Vines (1110 S. Akard St.), a laid-back place where you don’t have to dress up or be an oenophile (or even pretend to be) to enjoy bottles or glasses of wine, charcuterie, flatbreads and cakelettes.

Business is booming in Bishop Arts with three new restaurants and bars opening in recent weeks. Chef Sharon Van Meter teamed up with Aaron Nelson for Beckley 1115 (1115 N. Beckley Ave.), a wine bar that’s open for lunch, happy hour and dinner. Oak Cliff Advocate gave us the heads up on this opening on Oct. 12.

Dallas Observer intern Alyssa High took us to Casablanca (200 North Bishop Ave.) for a first look at the bar and karaoke speakeasy from the folks behind Paradiso, Mermaid and Botanist.

The group that owns Tribal All Day Cafe has opened Written by the Season; we had a first look at the seasonally inspired and vegetable-heavy menu in an airy open space.

Earlier this month, Raising Cane’s opened in Oak Cliff. Though the chicken chain has 40 DFW locations, this was their first in Oak Cliff, so Cainiacs of the neighborhood can celebrate.

Things are happening in the Park Cities area with a new Malai Kitchen (6130 Luther Lane) now open in Preston Center, their fourth location. Pizza Gianna (5219 W. Lovers Lane), a rebirth of family-owned My Family’s Pizza (formerly Marco’s Pizza) has opened at Inwood and Lovers.

Both locations of Foxtrot Market (University Park and Uptown) are now selling Detour Doughnuts in their shops, which saves Dallas doughnut lovers a trek to Frisco for some amazing gourmet creations.

In Far North Dallas, Salad and Go (14909 Coit Road) opened another drive-thru location where you can pick up breakfast and a salad for lunch in just one stop.

Fast 'N Loud's Richard Rawlings' is opening Gas Monkey Dallas in a new 40,000-square-foot restaurant, bar and music venue will open at the Mercer Boardwalk development along LBJ Freeway near Luna Road in Farmers Branch in 2022.

Meanwhile, in the former Gas Monkey location (on Technology Boulevard) a new music venue, Amplified, has opened with all traces of Richard Rawlings and the garage theme removed. Observer writer Danny Gallagher has an update on the space, and a glance at the food and drink menus has us hankering to check it out.

On Lower Greenville, the new restaurant Sister (2808 Greenville Ave.) from the team responsible for the see-and-be-seen spot The Charles has opened in the space known and loved as The Grape for many years. While perhaps not as upscale as its sister restaurant, Sister is bringing the sexy to Italian food as E. Mayne lays out for us in his first look.

There’s lots happening in Addison as well, with Jeni’s Splendid Ice Creams (5290 Belt Line Road) is now open in its second Dallas area location. Also in Addison, Spatch Kitchen and Cocktails has opened and their Southern-inspired menu which includes (of course) spatchcocked chicken has us drooling. Brunch dishes like Texas toast casserole and souffle pancakes are equally tempting. Yet another hot chicken restaurant, Sonny & Sons will open any day now in the space next door.
click to enlarge Mexicue tacos are on the menu at Hayter's, which is Hurtado's new side-hustle bar. - SEAN WELCH
Mexicue tacos are on the menu at Hayter's, which is Hurtado's new side-hustle bar.
Sean Welch
A favorite food truck from Plano, Bells Sweet Factory (2109 W. Parker, Suite 210) has opened a brick and mortar restaurant, and Observer food writer Felicia Lopez has the sweet (and spicy) scoop.

Plano Magazine has the story on the new Dave’s Hot Chicken (8315 Preston Road) in Plano and which probably makes Community Impact’s news of a new Popeyes (3945 W. Spring Creek Parkway) a little less thrilling.

The hottest thing in Arlington might be Hurtado Barbecue since they made Texas Monthly’s Top 50 BBQ List, but they also have a new bar called Hayters Bar & Lounge (213 E. Front St.) next door. Sean Welch has the first look at the craft cocktails and bar menu in a place that might be tough to get to for a while (but worth the effort).

Lewisville has a new bagel shop called Starship Bagel (1108 W. Main St.) that also might be worth the drive. And in the Old Town space where Cavalli Pizza once was, Sfereco from Refined Hospitality Concepts has now opened. The meatballs and pizza are quite fine.

Another Sfereco, PrimoMX and a Scout will open imminently in the newly complete phase one of the River Walk in Flower Mound. We’ll have the story on that for you soon.

La Mina (5630 Village Glen Dr.) recently opened at The Village inside The Drey Hotel. Chef de cuisine Tony Ibarra’s resume includes Nana, FT33, Petra and the Beast and more. This spot will have regional Mexican food, including nixtamalized house-made tortillas.

Our next openings update might be soon since we expect openings any day now from Pull Through Coffee (the coffee shop in a bike shop), Wits Steakhouse in the former Oak space, Odelay (Tex Mex from Julian Barsotti) and Villa Azur among others.
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By day, Kristina Rowe writes documentation that helps users navigate software, and as a contributor to the Dallas Observer she helps people find their way to food and fun. A long-time list-maker, small-business fan and happiness aficionado, she's also been an Observer reader for almost 40 years.
Contact: Kristina Rowe