Ole!: The Haute 5 Mexican Restaurants in Dallas

There are many things we are thankful for in this city. Ample parking, HOV lanes, those vintage red cowboy boots you bought that match perfectly with everything in your summer wardrobe.

What we also do here in Dallas–I suppose all around Texas, actually— is Mexican food. Don’t count me among the cynics: I try queso, salsa and enchiladas in pretty much every city I visit, on this continent and others. Unfortunately, given our history and relationship with our neighbors, I would reckon Texas delivers about the best Mexican cuisine this side of the Rio Grande. And in honor of Cinco De Mayo, allow me to demonstrate.


Mexican cuisine has always been centered around one thing here in Dallas: family. Desperado’s, founded almost 35 years ago on Greenville Avenue, has branched out to a second location in Garland, and is still the top notch margarita maker in town. Their resonably priced La Margarita has won numerous awards over the past decade as the best in town, and the Desperado tacos–flour tortillas deep fried with brisket and gooey cheese and avacado–is second to none in this state or any other. Join them for their Cinco De Mayo Celebration tomorrow. Oh, and have I mentioned their incredible Deep Friend Latte? (Photo above.)

Desperado’s is located at 4818 Greenville Avenue in Dallas, 214-363-1850 as well as in Garland at 3443 W. Campbell Road, 972-530-8886


My family, notoriously familiar with the Dallas “mafiosos” that are said to still linger around these parts, are very much fans of the downtown-based location Mattito’s (rumored to have ties to the Italians, oddly enough.)  Now branched out to Frisco, Mattito’s is known to serve the best brunch in town…just get there early or parking is impossible. Bonus: Ask for the Bob Armstrong dip. Not on the menu, but absolutely the greatest thing you’ll ever wish you never got addicted to.

Mattito’s is located at 3011 Routh Street in Dallas, 214-526-8181 and in Frisco at 6129 Main Street in Frisco, 214-872-3411


An uptown classic para muchos anos, (forgive the accent,) Manny’s has maintained it’s hold on the upper crust of the flan favoring crowd. The bar, the food, the energy is definitely there, as is a killer happy hour sesh that puts the ARG! in Margarita.

Manny’s is located at 3521 Oak Grove in Dallas, 214-252-1616


It is difficult in Texas to veer away from the favorited Tex Mex. However, for the last 25 years Javier’s has been maintaining the traditional Mexican food, and oh-so-successfully. Decorated with wild game, zebra rugs and rustic fixtures, the restaurant oozes Tejano Mexicano. With a full cigar bar and menu that could satisfy any palette, Javier’s can’t be missed.

Javier’s is located at 4912 COle Avenue in Dallas, 214-521-4211

Mi Cocina

Beginning with a meager 12 table restaurant, the Mi Cocina empire has now expanded to a handul of locations around the Metroplex, and every one has a different feel and ambience. The food, however, never changes: you’ll find traditional Tex Mex delights along with house specials like overnight-roasted brisket and Tilapia Verecruz. Although I don’t typically like my salsa served warm (we all have our things,) theirs takes the taco, pal.

For Mi Cocina locations, visit www.mcrowd.com/micocina