It's taco time right now, with lots of taco action happening around Dallas. That includes new taquerias, new limited-edition tacos on menus, and taquerias on the move.
This calls for a roundup of all the top taco news, a list of taco tidbits.
Tacos Patron, the Mexico City-inspired taqueria from Francisco Javier Madero — recognized for his work at La Fusion, the acclaimed Latin American restaurant in San Francisco — has opened its location of the Galleria Dallas mall. In addition to staples such as brisket, carnitas, pastor, and cochinita pibil, Tacos Patron has options like smoked salmon, using the latest in culinary technology such as sous-vide cooking. Here's a place where you can get tacos for dinner and empanadas for dessert. The menu showcases his interpretation of Latin cuisine's most popular dishes, an outstanding international wine list, and cocktails made from traditional spirits like mezcal and pisco.
Happy Taco is the new concept from Golden Tree Restaurants, the Richardson-based company that also owns concepts such as Golden Chick, Texadelphia, JC's Burger Bar / Burger House, and Fireside Pies. The concept made its debut on April 23 in Garland, at 430 E. I-30, 14 miles east of downtown Dallas, next door to a location of its sibling, Golden Chick. It's serving tacos for breakfast, lunch, and dinner, alongside a full bar with beer, wine, margaritas, and more. The menu covers classic tacos such as pastor with pork shoulder, pineapple, onions, and jalapenos, but also a whole slew of other options that run from buffalo chicken to vegan tacos with black beans and fried avocado.
TacoLingo, the new concept from veteran restaurateur Rich Hicks, is open at the Union Dallas building, with nine taco options including carne asada, Buffalo chicken, pulled pork, tempura-fried avocado, and "barbacoa mushroom," consisting of crimini mushrooms in a barbacoa marinade. There are also quesadillas, fajita "boards," guacamole, and a killer lineup of cocktails.
El Tiz is a newly opened taqueria at 2222 Fort Worth Ave. in Oak Cliff, specializing in traditional Mexican street tacos. It's a new sibling to the El Tizoncito chain which has four other locations around Dallas. Standards include pastor pork with adobo sauce, bistec (finely chopped beef), chicken, and pork. Other items include tortas, black bean soup, quesadillas, flautas, nachos, guacamole, frozen margaritas, and more.
Chilangos Tacos is a festive new taqueria at 10777 Harry Hines Blvd. by Dallas Love Field that's only been open a few weeks but is already packed. They do Mexico City-style tacos and are also creators of the La Costra signature taco, which is like a grilled cheese version of a taco — "costra" means "crust" — with fajita beef, bacon, and avocado on a toasted flour tortilla: crunchy, cheesy, and delicious. Tortillas made in house are earning raves, with their slightly thick, pliable texture.
Velvet Taco continues its master plan of expansion with a new location now on the books. The upscale taqueria chain will open at 15110 N. Dallas Pkwy., at the northeast corner of Belt Line Road, with an opening set for fall. Velvet Taco honcho Clay Dover says that the location is one of several happening in 2019, including one at Legacy Hall, the food hall in Plano.
Taco Joint, the small chain of taquerias, closed its location in Richardson on May 1; it had been in the same Richardson Heights center as Alamo Drafthouse since 2014. The chain will move to a new location in Lake Highlands at 9660 Audelia Rd., which is scheduled to open in a few weeks.
Rusty Taco is introducing new limited-time, seasonal menu items available through September 1. There's a surf 'n turf taco with smoked brisket and fried shrimp with BBQ sauce; street corn topped with chile powder, cilantro, cotija cheese, and a special street corn sauce; and a watermelon mango margarita with a spicy tajin salt rim.
Tacodeli has new specials for May. Their breakfast special is the Jamon Suavecito made with smoked ham, Gruyere, and jack cheese glaze, green onion, and scrambled eggs from Vital Farms. Their lunch special is the Aguachile made with Gulf Shrimp, serrano tomatillo salsa, avocado, and radish.
Taco Cabana is adding Buffalo chicken to several of its menu items. There's a Buffalo chicken bowl, a Buffalo chicken taco, a Buffalo chicken quesadilla, Buffalo chicken flautas, or a Buffalo chicken sampler with a small quesadilla, 2 chalupas, and 6 flautas.
Taco Bell is testing its two vegetarian items, both featuring black beans. Vegetarian Crunchwrap Supreme is a twist on the regular Crunchwrap Supreme, a classic menu item with seasoned beef, nacho cheese sauce, lettuce, tomatoes, and reduced fat sour cream, wrapped up in a crunchy tostada shell. In the vegetarian version, the beef is replaced by black beans. It's $3.70. Vegetarian Quesarito is a saucy quesadilla-burrito, packed with black beans. It's $3.05.