Quaint Taco Shop Taco Y Vino Adds Eggs to Everything, but Is it Brunch?

Taco Y Vino's tamale bites
Taco Y Vino's tamale bites Taylor Adams
Is it lazy, simple or efficient to take your regular menu, throw it over eggs and call it brunch? Let’s talk about that.

There’s no doubt that Taco Y Vino offers a tranquil setting in its adorable little house in North Oak Cliff.

And there’s probably not much more you really need out of life other than tacos and wine. Maybe water — but this taco house has that.

The house, built in 1945, sits along a crowded street with a small rear parking lot that comfortably fits about five cars. If you’re shut out of that, you can take a chance on the street, jockeying with cars from other Bishop Arts patrons or employees of nearby, looming construction projects.

Once you get inside, you’ll find the place has more than tacos. For brunch, you can get all the options you want in a corn tortilla over chilaquiles.

When you sit down for brunch between 11 a.m. and 3 p.m. on a Saturday or Sunday, you’ll see a menu that doesn’t look like brunch. Indeed, it’s Taco Y Vino’s normal menu of tacos ($9.50 for three) and quesadillas ($6.25), with a list of main ingredients that make up the filling.
click to enlarge What's the difference between these tacos and brunch tacos? When you eat them. - TAYLOR ADAMS
What's the difference between these tacos and brunch tacos? When you eat them.
Taylor Adams
The crispy pork carnitas are fine, though they need to work on the “crispy” a little bit, and they could use a little more salt. If you’re looking for something hardy, try the carne asada. The beef is good quality, but the “wow” factor is limited. For something different, go for the jaca de pibil — jackfruit braced in pineapple and achiote — served with jalapeño and slaw.

If eggs aren’t your thing, try the quesadillas. While you can pick three proteins with your tacos, the quesadilla is simple but delicious: The tortilla is fresh and grilled just to the point of crisp, and there’s enough cheese to satisfy without the guilt.
click to enlarge Taco Y Vino's pork carnitas need more crunch. - TAYLOR ADAMS
Taco Y Vino's pork carnitas need more crunch.
Taylor Adams
The chilaquiles ($11) you can get with any of these items are fairly standard but still hit the spot. To play around with flavors further, you can’t go wrong with the house-made salsas.

If you want an appetizer — again, part of the normal menu — opt for the seafood-stuffed jalapeño ($3.50). There’s nothing terribly special about each one, but if jalapeño poppers are a weakness of yours, you’ll like them. Skip the tamale bites ($6.25), which are more like dry, little corn fritters.

So you’ll have to decide if this approach to brunch suits you, but the old home offers a lovely space to sit at a picnic table outside, getting sunburned, while sipping a bottle of rose.

Really, isn’t that all you need out of brunch?

Taco y Vino is at 213 W. Eighth St.
KEEP THE DALLAS OBSERVER FREE... Since we started the Dallas Observer, it has been defined as the free, independent voice of Dallas, and we'd like to keep it that way. With local media under siege, it's more important than ever for us to rally support behind funding our local journalism. You can help by participating in our "I Support" program, allowing us to keep offering readers access to our incisive coverage of local news, food and culture with no paywalls.
Taylor Adams has written about the restaurant industry for the Dallas Observer since 2016. Now the Observer's food editor, she attended Southern Methodist University before covering local news at The Dallas Morning News.