The Texas Tasty – The Best Tex Mex in DFW

Joe T. Garcia’s

When it comes to Tex Mex, Joe T. Garcia’s has been a Fort Worth staple since 1935. This family-style restaurant has no menu. Instead, Joe T’s offers a choice between a fajita or enchilada meal. The appetizers, sides, and margaritas complete each plate. As one of the biggest Tex Mex restaurants there is, and with plenty of indoor and outdoor seating, Joe T’s is the perfect place to go with a large group. If you’re ever in the historic stockyards and craving authentic Tex Mex, Joe T. Gracia’s is the place for you!

Mesero

With six locations throughout the DFW area and after being voted Best Tex Mex Location by USA Today, Mesero is another great sitdown option. Mesero’s focus on Mexican spirit and American Life certainly makes for the best Tex Mex experience! Offering a wide variety of entrees and sides, drinks, and even brunch, Mesero can fulfill your Tex Mex cravings in many ways and at any time of the day. Want Mesero brought to you? Be sure to check out their delivery and take away menu!

Chuy’s

It’s safe to say that Chuy’s has become one of the most famous Tex Mex restaurants even outside of the state of Texas. Originally established in Austin, Chuy’s has expanded and taken over the Tex Mex world by a storm. Chuy’s boasts ten locations in DFW alone and additional locations throughout more than 15 states. A dining experience at Chuy’s isn’t complete without the fun environment, Elvis influence, and a swirled frozen margarita!

Blue Goose Cantina

With a new location recently opening in the TCU area, Blue Goose Cantina has become all the rage throughout DFW! This Tex Mex spot has seven locations throughout the Metroplex. Blue Goose prides themselves on fresh ingredients, high grade meat, and handcrafted food. The use of mesquite wood grills at Blue Goose gives this Tex Mex food a unique flavor you can’t find anywhere else. In 2019, Blue Goose was voted Best Tex Mex in DFW, so this is some food you won’t want to miss!

MesoMaya

After being voted the best regional Mexican cuisine for many years by D Magazine, it’s safe to say that MesoMaya has earned its spot on this list! Executive Chef, Nico Sanchez, moved from Mexico to Texas with a goal to serve the authentic flavors of Tex Mex cuisine to his customers. The focus on fresh food and over-the-top presentation makes a dining experience at MesoMaya one-of-a-kind! We recommend trying their signature plates and drinks, such as fresh enchiladas, Budin Azteca, or any of the uniquely flavored margaritas!

Pappasito’s Cantina

If you’ve ever driven through Texas and seen a restaurant with bright, colorful lights, it was probably Pappasito’s Cantina! Pappasito’s is a signature Texan spot for authentic Tex Mex. With multiple locations throughout the Metroplex, including in the DFW airport, and 80 locations throughout the U.S., it’s safe to say that Pappsito’s has become a Tex Mex giant. The family-owned focus at Pappasito’s makes for a warm and welcoming environment. On top of their food, they pride themselves on their infamous, homemade margaritas.

Torchy’s Tacos

In the need for some Tex Mex while on the run? Torchy’s Tacos is the answer for you! When it comes to Tex Mex food staples, tacos and queso are two things that instantly come to mind. At Torchy’s, both are bound to impress. With nearly a dozen signature tacos and equally delicious breakfast taco options, we recommend getting it trashy! This, of course, means adding queso to your taco in place of lettuce.

Fuzzy’s Taco Shop

Something even better than your average Tex Mex is affordable Tex Mex! Another great option for when you’re on the go, the Mexican and “Baja chill” vibes at Fuzzy’s are the perfect spot to enjoy food and drinks while watching the big game, catching up with friends, or to grab-and-go. From tacos and burritos to salads and quesadillas, there is truly something for everyone. If you order chips and queso, be sure to ask for Fuzzy dust on your chips!

Austin City Taco

Austin City Taco is a newer Tex Mex restaurant in Fort Worth, off of West 7th and near the TCU campus. The Austin City Taco experience is supposed to give you the feeling of a weekend road trip to Austin. With this in mind, dining at Austin City Taco is not only about the food, but how you feel at the restaurant. In terms of food, the main goal at Austin City Taco is to serve authentic flavors as opposed to following any Tex Mex trends. So next time you’re craving some traditional Tex Mex, take a sweet escape to Austin City Taco! 

Taco Heads

Who says taco Tuesday can’t be celebrated a little early? At Taco Heads, $5 Margarita Mondays are where it’s at! Originally founded as a taco truck in Fort Worth, Taco Heads has grown to establish multiple storefronts throughout the Metroplex. Currently, Taco Heads has two restaurant locations and sells their signature breakfast tacos at 15 different DFW coffee shops. Through their classic Tex Mex plates with a twist, Taco Heads is working to change the food culture of DFW. Enjoying elotes, fresh fish tacos, or some Mexican hot chocolate cookies can be done while supporting local!   

10 Ways You Can Support a Cause You Believe In

1. Find Your Cause

If you think about your values long enough, you’ll find something that might need to change in the world for the better. Be it fighting for specific rights, changing local ordinances, or even total systemic reform, there’s often many ways that you can fight for even the most niche interests. It just needs to be found first.

2. Learn the History

Once you’ve got something you want to follow, or even if you’ve been behind it for a long time, it’s good to educate yourself on the history behind what you’re fighting for. Knowing what changes have been made in the right direction, or what changes have been made to stop progress will help fuel the future of the movement and give you more solid ground to stand on. While many movements will have specific books or readings that pertain to their history, the search can start by looking at research data from sources like the Pew Research Center, or read online news from sources like the New York Times or BBC, to get an idea of what’s current. From there, you can reach out to people in the movement – professors in the articles or people speaking on behalf of groups – to learn more about its philosophy and origins.

3. Spread Awareness Using Social Media

Social media is a fantastic way to get the word out on things happening: protests, petitions, fundraisers, community events, and more depend on people spreading information as far as possible. It’s also a great way to amplify prominent voices – especially if you agree with what they have to say. However, don’t blindly post about causes without understanding fully what they’re about, as it can be counterproductive to the movement.

4. Attend or Organize a Protest

Get the masks ready and take some water! If you’re able to organize or attend a protest, you’ll contribute to the public display of your beliefs and even give them more credibility. The bigger the crowd, the more people will pay attention.

5. Sign Petitions

If you can’t physically show up for a cause, you can always sign and spread petitions so that there’s a hard copy of the collective voices asking for change. They’re often delivered to politicians or important figures and give a tangible number of people who want to see an action happen.

6. Educate Others

Once you yourself have invested enough time into what you believe, it’s good to keep other people just as educated. Something as simple as a post or twitter thread full of resources, or as complicated as creating and following a lesson plan that includes assigned readings can be helpful to add more people behind the movement.

7. Get people involved

Spreading awareness of events or petitions is one thing, but convincing other people to join can prove to be difficult. Start with friends and even family members by creating a space where they can learn and come to you for help with understanding, but then ask them to do the same with their peers.

8. Write to politicians in charge

Government can be slow to change, but pressuring those in power is always one of the best ways you can get things done. Using emails, letters, petitions, or even all three can force them into paying attention to what you want them to hear. Their stances as officials can be an open door for constituents to push for change, and their actions can (and probably will) affect their futures as leaders.

9. Be active in your community

As fun as it is to be a homebody, it’s not always enough to only work from the sidelines. If there are community events like town halls or free concerts, you can wear your best cause-related t-shirt and pass out handbills to people or speak to your local leaders directly. You can join or even create a specialized organization so that you can have a local group of support for your cause that can come together when possible.

10. Be supportive however possible

If you have the means to, you can consider donating to fundraisers that align with your cause. If there’s a protest going on, you can be on the ground and provide masks, waters, snacks, or even medical assistance to your fellow activists. One way Austinites have recently shown support was by donating to a GoFundMe seeking Justice for Mike Ramos, and signing a petition that accompanied it as well.

The Texas Tasty – Brunching in DFW Guide

Press Cafe @presscafefwtx

With stunning views of the Trinity and located near the hip Shops at Clearfork, Press Cafe is the perfect brunch spot to bike to or enjoy before a shopping spree! Although they’re open all day, brunch at Press is definitely a healthy option for eating a meal out. From avocado toast to a number of different breakfast burritos, Press Cafe has a menu that can fulfill any brunch cravings.

Happiest Hour @happiesthourdal

Located in the heart of downtown Dallas, the modern and urban aesthetic at Happiest Hour brings the fun of citylife to your brunching experience! The rooftop seating area at Happiest Hour boasts beautiful views of the city skyline. With more breakfast cocktails than you could possibly imagine, and certainly no shortage of food as well, going out to brunch at Happiest Hour is bound to impress.  

Righteous Foods @righteousfoods

Known for being a clean eating restaurant, Righteous Foods is the perfect brunch choice for those with dietary restrictions, allergies, or that are in the mood for a healthy meal! Righteous Foods is located in the museum district of Fort Worth – just a quick drive from West 7th or downtown. The aesthetically pleasing environment at Righteous Foods gives off a greenhouse-like vibe. It is safe to say that this speaks to the freshness of the high-quality food being served.

Yolk @eatyolk

When we think of Yolk, we think of a menu full of eggs of any kind! Right off of Fort Worth’s iconic Sundance Square, Yolk is a staple brunch spot when downtown or visiting Fort Worth. As one of the most popular brunch restaurants in the area, the large space available at Yolk makes it a great option for eating out with a large group. Being voted as the #1 breakfast spot in five different cities, Yolk is definitely worth visiting!  

The Henry @thehenryrestaurant

The Henry is known for being a classy, delicious restaurant throughout many states and locations. Something that sets The Henry apart from other like-restaurants is its special brunch offerings only on the weekends. Revered as the greatest neighborhood restaurant in Uptown, the smaller, curated brunch menu at The Henry brings a level of luxury to eating. Family-style serving options also makes The Henry a great option for groups!

The Rustic @therusticdallas

With both dine-in and take out options, brunch at The Rustic can be enjoyed in Uptown or easily come to you! Brunch classics like avocado toast and eggs, plus their own unique offerings such as rustic hot chicken and cheddar grits, makes for a true southern experience. On top of this, the many different drinks and frozen creations adds a fun element to brunching with friends.

Brewed @brewedfw

When in need of freshly brewed coffee and some delicious food to compliment it, Brewed is the perfect coffee shop-like environment to visit. Located in the W. Magnolia neighborhood of Fort Worth, Brewed is an ideal spot to do some work while grabbing a bite to eat. Since brunch is served all day, it’s the perfect place for all breakfast lovers. We recommend trying their daily plate specials!

City Hall Bistro @cityhallbistro

In the mood for a breakfast skillet or fresh pressed juice? Then City Hall Bistro is the perfect spot for you! City Hall Bistro is a space used to commemorate being the original site intended for Dallas’ city hall building. Because of this, City Hall Bistro was very carefully and intentionally designed to reflect this importance. The modern bistro feeling makes enjoying traditional, southern european cuisine different from many other brunch restaurants. 

Overeasy @overeasydallas

Brunch at Overeasy is all about coffee, drinks, and eggs! This eatery has the feeling of modern coffee bar meets classic brunch diner. The extensive brunch menu at Overeasy makes it the perfect brunch restaurant for all cravings and preferences. In a rush? Feel free to grab a coffee or breakfast taco at Overeasy’s takeaway coffee bar space! Located in the middle of downtown Dallas, brunch at Overeasy is delicious and convenient.

Ol’ South Pancake House @olsouthpancakehouse

Although not the fanciest or most over the top, Ol’ South Pancake house is a true staple in the TCU area! The name explains the space perfectly – it’s an old, southern pancake house. Known for their world famous German pancakes, Ol’ South offers breakfast all day long, making it perfect for a quick and easy brunch at any time of the day. Ol’ South has the best hot chocolate, chocolate chip waffles, and of course German pancakes, we’ve ever had!

Socially Distanced Group Fitness: How Fight Club Austin is Creating a New Normal

After months of at home workouts and long walks through parks, gyms in Texas reopened in late May. As gyms continue to adapt their spaces to the new world we’re living in, I thought it would be interesting to see how one Austin gym is ‘rolling with the punches’.

Fight Club Austin is a boutique fitness studio located in the heart of West Campus on Rio Grande Street, the studio offers full body HIIT fitness classes with a focus on kickboxing. Loved by locals, they reopened on May 18 armed with social distancing protocols and bottles of disinfectant excited to welcome clients back into the gym.

Kaitlyn Gruener, a trainer and the social media manager at Fight Club, gave us the inside look on what a normal workout class looks like now.

“It’s very different, but not in a bad way; we used to be much more hands-on,” said Gruener. “So there’s a learning curve with how to demonstrate and provide correction from a distance.”

Boxes marked by red tape show appropriate distance during workouts.
Photo Courtesy of Fight Club Austin

Before the pandemic, a typical Fight Club class contained around 34 people, due to new guidelines class size is down to 10-12 people, said Gruener. She said the use of common equipment and high touch surfaces have also been reduced with clients required to bring their own water and boxing gloves.

A big change is the implementation of workout boxes to indicate the proper distance between clients, Gruener said.

“Each box is six feet away from any other box in every direction, and clients remain in the red boxes during the stations, with a one-direction rotation in between stations,” said Gruener.

Fight Club is my favorite place to get a workout, the trainers are always ready with pump up playlists and motivating guidance— I can burn at least 600 calories after every class. Even though the classes may look a little different you’re still getting the same great sweaty workout Austinites have come to love.

Gruener noted that masks are required upon entry, exit and encouraged during the workout, she also spoke about other measures the gym was taking to ensure a safe workout environment.

“We provide a disinfecting spray bottle and a hand towel to every client to be carried around during class,” said Gruener. “Longer transition times were built into class to ensure enough time for clients to wipe down any equipment they worked with at the station before moving on to the next one.”

Clients are provided with towels and disinfectant during the class to help keep the space clean. Photo Courtesy of Fight Club Austin

Since the reopening of the gym, Gruener said she has felt comfortable as both a trainer and a client.

“There’s ample room for me to move around and provide adjustments when needed, and even when I attend a workout myself,” said Gruener. “I’ve felt very safe and well-distanced from other people.”

For those who aren’t quite ready to go back to the gym yet, Fight Club and their awesome trainers still have you covered! Fight Club trainers, Lauren (@laurencysafit) and Lia (@liamojofitspo), have their own fitness Instagram accounts where they post great home workouts and host the occasional zoom class.

The Fight Club Instagram account (@fightclubaustin) also continues to post different workout tips and videos— from form correction to their famous eight-minute ab circuits! As we all adjust to life during a pandemic, we can embrace the efforts of our local community in trying to create a new sense of normalcy. It’s no surprise that Fight Club is trying to make the best out of this situation. In 2019, they were named StudioHop Fitness’ favorite fitness studio in Austin.

The studio continues to support their loyal clientele, whether they’re ready to brave the gym or in need of some home workout inspiration. Fight Club is thankful for their clients’ willingness to learn and adapt during this adjustment period, Gruener said.

“Everyone who has visited the gym has come with a positive attitude and a willingness to adapt to the ‘new normal’, and that’s all we ask,” said Gruener. “We hope to see y’all at the gym soon!”

For more information on Fight Club Austin visit fightclubatx.com and @fightclubaustin

University of Texas Students Turn to TikTok For Entertainment During Coronavirus Pandemic

When classes at The University of Texas were cancelled due to the Coronavirus Pandemic, students started joining TikTok for entertainment while quarantining at home.

“I wouldn’t have made a TikTok account if it wasn’t for the pandemic,” said Rajya Atluri. 

Atluri has 33,900 followers and 641,000 likes on TikTok and mainly creates beauty-related videos. Since joining TikTok in March, Atluri has established herself as a beauty content creator and provides makeup tips to users who look like her, she says. 

Atluri gained popularity on the platform when her TikTok about color correcting went viral. The video shows Atluri applying an orange concealer under her eyes and around her mouth before applying foundation. This is known to disguise dark circles and dark spots on medium to dark skin tones, according to L’Oréal’s Guide to Color Correcting.

“The beauty industry doesn’t cater towards people with darker skin,” said Atluri, “it was something that people really resonated with because they were finally seeing someone who has skin like their with a tip or trick that, you know, they normally wouldn’t know about.”

TikTok allows users to make and share short-form videos on topics ranging from dancing and lip-synching to life hacks and beauty tutorials. The app was launched by Chinese technology company ByteDance in September 2017 and made its debut in the US less than a year later.

When countries across the globe were placed under lockdown orders due to the Coronavirus Pandemic, TikTok saw a surge in popularity. From March to April 2020, TikTok usage increased by 33% among GenZ and 27% among millennials, according to Kantar’s Global COVID-19 Barometer.

“I honestly refused to get it before quarantine,” said Kirsten Hilling.

Hilling has 2,665 followers and 354,800 likes on TikTok and creates comedy-related content. Hilling gained popularity on the platform when her TikTok about popular restaurants within The University of Texas community went viral. These restaurants include Cain and Abel’s, Buford’s and Roppolo’snPizza on West Sixth Street. 

“Within the first two hours I started getting thousands of views,” said Hilling, “I kept checking and it was just going up and up and up.” 

Hashtags are a valuable feature on TikTok that help creators reach other users based on their similar interests. Atluri utilizes hashtags such as #BrownGirl and #BrownSkin on her beauty-related videos, while Hilling uses hashtags like #UTAustin and #HookEm to connect with other University of Texas students.

“A good chunk of my followers are UT students,” said Claire-Lise Greve, “that’s obviously who I want to make content for.”

Greve has 13,500 followers and 321,000 likes on TikTok and creates comedy-related content geared towards Greek life at The University of Texas. She became popular on TikTok by creating a series of “starter packs,” which are collections of images used to illustrate a stereotypical person, place or culture. Greve created a series of “starter packs” about private school life which went viral.

TikTok provides an endless stream of videos, most of them fifteen seconds or less, that are curated to each user based on their interests. Despite the final product that appears on the “For You” page, it can take content creators an hour to create a single TikTok.

“I think my average is six to nine videos a day,” said Greve, “which sounds ridiculous.”

Atluri doesn’t shoot her content within the TikTok app, but prefers to use the built-in camera app on her iPhone. Sometimes it takes her multiple attempts to get it right, she says, so this process is most effective. Atluri imports her videos into TikTok, shortens them, then adds music and text using the editing features within the app. She also spends time responding to beauty-related questions and comments from her followers. In regard to her setup, Atluri uses a LED Ring Light and tripod to create quality content. This process is the same for many content creators on TikTok, including Hilling and Greve.

Everybody joins TikTok for different reasons, Atluri said, but for users who are interested in building a community on TikTok, she suggests finding a niche and sticking to it.

“Figure out exactly what you want that to be and stick to it for a little bit,” said Atluri, “that way you have consistency and your followers know what you’re putting out there.”

For users who are interested in creating comedy-related content on TikTok, Hilling suggests being authentic.

“Do something that’s true to you and funny to you,” said Hilling, “because who cares what other people think?”

Top 10 Texas Restaurants That Deliver (In More Ways Than One)

In a market saturated with dozens of delivery services like Postmates, UberEats, GrubHub, etc. it can be difficult to choose where to indulge on nights when cooking dinner just isn’t on the menu. To top it off, we’re living in pandemic, and despite the state’s businesses being open, it’s important to practice social distancing in order to prevent COVID-19 from spreading. In an effort to remedy this threat to cuisine, here’s TexasTasty’s top ten picks for restaurants that’ll deliver a night full of flavor right to your doorstep— without burning a hole in your wallet. And don’t worry we have something for everyone from Austin to Houston and in-between!

Houston Area

Kim Son Restaurant

With three locations in the greater Houston Area, Kim Son Restaurants have been serving the community with delicious Chinese-Vietnamese cuisine since the 80’s. There’s dozens of delicious soups, rice platters, and hearty noodle dishes to choose from. The Pho Beef with bean sprouts and mint is a bowl of savory heaven, the Kim Son Sampler boasting egg rolls that are the perfect mix of crunch and softness. While there’s a minimum delivery cost of $25 through the restaurant’s delivery service, Kim Son is also available through Doordash , GrubHub, UberEats, and more from its Bellaire, Sugarland, and Downtown locations for a minimal fee.

Jupiter’s Pizza

Why reserve breakfast foods for the morning rush? Jupiter’s Pizza serves a gourmet array of unique sourdough pizzas and Belgian waffles both sweet and savory, along with omelettes, skillet meals, French toast, and even salads for those who crave something a bit more earthy. Even better, all of their signature dishes, like the famous Jupiter pizza and Morning Belle waffle are available on DoorDash for no additional delivery fee with the DashPass service. It’s a deal that’s out of this world.

Thai Cottage

Available through Postmates, DoorDash, GrubHub, and more, Thai Cottage boasts a menu averaging 4 stars across platforms that’s available in 9 Houston Area and greater Texas locations. From decadent desserts like the seasonal Sweet Rice and Mango to the Tiger Cry charbroiled beef entree, to the kids entrees averaging around $5.00, there’s something for everyone at this popular haven of Asian cuisine.

Dallas/ Fort Worth Area

Wai Wai Kitchen

Asian fusion food with specialty entrees like mango chicken and ginger stir fry maxing out at $9.25– a steal. The restaurant is rated 5/5 on Grubhub, and deliveries are made for a small fee via Postmates, Doordash, Favor, and more. Customer reviews boast Thai Cottage’s large portion sizes that give you more bang for your buck, a Yelp reviewer writing that “the shrimp/chicken lo-mein melted in my mouth.” What’s not to love? WaiWai kitchen is sure to keep your night in flavorful and fun.

Cowboy Chicken

Cowboy Kitchen boasts southern cooking described as “integrity tested by fire” on their website. Honestly, it’s easy to see why. After 4:00pm on Sundays and Wednesdays, customers can feed the whole clan with a rich rotisserie chicken, 3 Texas Size sides, and 4 rolls for just $20.00. Aside from that, the chain also offers crispy drumsticks, an array of Texas style sides, bowls, sandwiches, and their famous chicken enchiladas with house made tomatillo sour cream— all made easily available through their delivery service as well as other third party providers.

The Biscuit Bar

Risk it for the biscuit no longer! The Biscuit Bar’s 4 Dallas area and greater Texas locations offer an app for both iPhone and Android through which delivery is made, a feat both convenient and free of charge. Their Tasty Joe Cocktail was featured in Forbes, and their famous loaded biscuit meals are highly acclaimed by local news outlets like Plano Magazine, The Dallas Morning News, and Crave DFW. Biscuits range from the low price of $4.00 for a standard sausage biscuit to $13.00 for their most costly item at the Dallas location, The Rough Night, loaded with southern fried chicken, burger patty, ham, turkey, pulled pork, crispy bacon, tots, cheddar, and house-made sausage gravy.

Austin

Bombay Express

With delivery available through Doordash, Bombay Express offers a variety of exclusively vegetarian Indian food and street snacks. The Aloo Paratha, a layered bread filled with spiced potatoes and a side of yogurt, is as popular as it is a house favorite. Cheese Dosas filled with onions, jalapeños, and traditional spices offer miles of flavor. If your sweet tooth needs some TLC, Galub Jamun— dumplings made with condensed milk and soaked in rose syrup— and Kulfi— authentic Indian ice cream— are just two of the delicious options offered on the dessert menu of this delectable staple.

Roppolo’s

Oprah raved about this pizza. Enough said. Originally based in New York City, Roppolo’s two locations in West Campus and 6th Street offer patrons fresh Sicilian pizza for a 20% discount in the 78701 zip code. It gets better: kids eat free Sunday, and with the purchase of Roppolo’s gourmet food, the establishment uses its proceeds to donate to organizations they consider “a god send of goodness for our community.” Quality pizza? Low price? Charity work? Just order through their website and let them do the rest!

San Antonio

WingIt

No contact delivery and supporting black business during a pandemic? WingIt wings nothing— just delivers on its promise for quality service. With two San Antonio area locations founded by a former football star and Texas college graduates, WingIt serves a plethora of flavored boneless and bone out wings, $5.00 daiquiris on Monday’s, and a signature pineapple lemonade flavor that’s bursting with citrus and delight.

WiseGuys

The food will make you want to “leave the gun and take the cannoli” (their words not mine). With a loaded menu of burgers, cheesesteaks, Vienna hotdogs, and more for a bargain, WiseGuys just seems like the wise decision. For customers looking for healthier options, the eatery offers sandwiches and salads, along with wraps like the Grilled Chicken Wrap— grilled or fried chicken, lettuce, tomatoes, onions, and mozzarella cheese with sauce bound by a spinach wrap. It’s The Godfather of Chicago style dishes in the heart of Texas, and it’s sure to live up to its acclaimed 4.5 star rating across the web.