Food News

The Ranch at Las Colinas Leans on Locally Sourced Ingredients to Fill Plates

Fried chicken at The Ranch at Las Colinas is sourced from C&L Meats.
Fried chicken at The Ranch at Las Colinas is sourced from C&L Meats. Maria Lawson
A singer strummed his guitar and poured his heart  out over the microphone at The Ranch at Las Colinas, while diners enjoyed steak and margaritas.

Every Tuesday through Saturday, this otherwise quiet restaurant becomes a venue with live music hitting the stage at 7 p.m.
click to enlarge The Ranch at Las Colinas has live music Tuesday through Saturday. - MARIA LAWSON
The Ranch at Las Colinas has live music Tuesday through Saturday.
Maria Lawson
The restaurant isn’t just a normal Texas shindig, though. Crabmeat sourced from Mr. Fish in Plano and spring mix plucked in Denton are just some examples of the restaurant’s commitment to getting top-shelf ingredients while supporting the community by obtaining locally sourced ingredients.

“We get as much as we can from local vendors and supplement with the larger ones as needed,” says Jorge Rivera, chef de cuisine at The Ranch.
click to enlarge MARIA LAWSON
Maria Lawson
Naturally, the locally-sourced proportions change with the seasons. During the spring and summer, the restaurant gets lettuce from a small farm, but in the winter it has to switch vendors to make sure customers can still fill orders.

Rivera has an open-door relationship with community partners; some will swing by the restaurant to pitch their products, and he’ll find others through Google or Facebook to add to the menu.

When we visited, our meal started with an order of chips and queso. Although the cheese isn’t locally-sourced, the milk came from Hill Country Dairies, which is located in a few cities across Texas, including Dallas. The chips were once tortillas from El Milagro Tortillas, but after a swim in the fryer, they became half of our locally-sourced appetizer.

When it came to the main course, we indulged in perfectly whipped potatoes topped with fried chicken and a side of jalapeño sausage gravy. Along with some buttery-salted green beans, the meal satisfied our southern needs. The chicken, like every meat on the menu at The Ranch, came from local C&L Meats.

Although sourcing locally can bring extra costs at times, it’s worth it for better cared for products and community engagement, Rivera says. He also believes that giving back to the local economy is important to a sustaining community.

The Ranch continues to look for more community partners.

“We are always looking for new ways to support our community,” Rivera says. “Taking on new vendors is something that we will always do. Being a part of helping businesses grow is some of the best things about what we do.”
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