Revered Metropolitan Cafe in downtown Dallas will reopen with noted chef
A downtown Dallas restaurant is undertaking a revival: The Metropolitan Café, a breakfast-and-lunch spot at 2032 Main St. that closed in 2021 after 20 years, is being re-opened by former patron and fan Noemi Chiriac, with a new chef, redesigned interior, and menu featuring original dishes and new ones, too.
According to a release, the restaurant will open in late fall, and Chiriac will be assisted in her mission by chef Randall Braud, who was previously at Barcelona Wine Bar, where he earned a nomination in the 2021 CultureMap Tastemaker Awards for Rising Star Chef.
Braud has also worked at Dallas restaurants such as Mot Hai Ba and Bolsa Mercado, and previously did a Filipino pop-up that culled recipes from his own heritage.
Braud is creating a menu that weaves in original café classics plus artisan deli sandwiches; comforting, familiar dishes; and dishes that incorporate Noemi’s mother’s Romanian flare. She must be a fiery person.
Classic items staying on the menu include:
- The Meeker Special - a croissant sandwich with egg, ham, cheese, tomato, cucumber, and scallions
- The Denver Croissant - a croissant sandwich with egg, ham, cheese, green pepper, tomato, and onion
- breakfast bagel sandwiches
- a daily special hot plate
"The Meeker Special is what kept me coming back to the original café," Chiriac says. "I love croissants, fresh cucumbers and scallions and this sandwich had all of that."
Chiriac first encountered The Metropolitan Café in the summer of 2021 while working as an engineer at Raytheon. On one visit in November 2021, she brought her mother and asked the owner if her mother could help cook. It was the cafe's last day, and Chiriac ended up buying it as a way to share some of her mother's one-of-a-kind Romanian dishes.
The 2,056 square foot space has been revamped with an art deco design playing homage to the time when it was built, in 1913.
The building was originally known as the Masonic Blue Lodge Temple until 1919 where it’s primarily remembered as The Western Union Telegraph Company building. This historic location is where both Lee Harvey Oswald and Jack Ruby received telegrams. Ruby paid a visit to the Western Union just 5 minutes before shooting Oswald behind the building outside the Dallas courthouse.
The Metropolitan Café will pay tribute to both old and new Dallas giving customers a space to enjoy breakfast, lunch, and happy hour. The cafe will also be available to host private events and offer catering.