So Long Cafe Express

Longtime Uptown Dallas cafe serves last lunch before high-rise moves in

Uptown Dallas cafe serves last lunch before high-rise moves in

Cafe Express salad
The clock is ticking for the McKinney Avenue branch of Cafe Express. Photo courtesy of Cafe Express

If there's nothing you love more than sitting at Cafe Express on McKinney Avenue, sipping a glass of Chardonnay and noshing on salad, you'd best savor the moment: The long-running Uptown eatery will close on October 30.

"We close at end of business on Friday, so you can still go there all this week," says Cafe Express spokesperson Kelli Scandrol.

The news is not all bad. The restaurant will reopen, but not until 2017.

The closure comes as ground is about to break on M Line Tower, the 20-story residential tower being built by High Street Residential, Trammell Crow's residential subsidiary, at 3230 McKinney Ave., where Cafe Express currently sits.

The building will house 271 residential units, plus retail on the ground floor that'll be anchored by a new Cafe Express.

The building sits across from the McKinney Avenue Transit Authority (MATA) trolley barn and headquarters; High Street will dedicate the southwest corner of the ground floor to a new trolley barn and MATA museum.

Scandrol says that the exact layout of the new Cafe Express is still being determined. "It'll be on the same plot of land, but it will probably have a slightly different address," she says.

But all guests at the McKinney branch will get a "bounce back" coupon good at any of the four other Dallas-area locations: Mockingbird Station, Lovers Lane, Shops at Legacy in Plano, and Southlake.

The chain has a couple of new menu items, including a hot roast beef sandwich that Scandrol compares to a classic French dip, and a relaunch of the triple deli salad, a throwback item from the chain's '80s days.

Houston-based Cafe Express made its local debut in Addison, a location that has since closed. McKinney Avenue opened in 1996, making it the chain's longest-running branch in the Dallas area.