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Best Dallas Mex-Mex?

Once I at at San Angel Inn in Mexico City and found out what Mex-Mex is. It was a true eye-opener after spending my youth in Dallas eating Tex-Mex and thinking that I knew all about Mexican cuisine. Now, after living away from Texas for a few decades, I am returning for a visit and hope to find a restaurant that serves true gourmet Mexican food. I have read over several threads and have seen some Mex-Mex listed (Mias, Litos, Cafe San Miguel...). If you have had a really fine Mexican meal recently, could you share your experience? And, if you have a view on the three I have listed, could you provide any details? BTW, money is not an issue, nor do I think that high price necessarily correlates with good quality (tho' it often does!).

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    1. Just curious. WHEN did Mia's become Mex-Mex??????

      1 Reply
      1. re: CocoaNut

        CocoaNut, my error. I haven't been to Mias and I must have misread a thread somewhere and thought that someone called it Mex-Mex. From the replies below, I can see it is not.

      2. Litos closed last year and sorely disappointed that I never got a chance to eat there.

        Cafe San Miguel is legit Mex-Mex. Actually, none of the three places OP listed would qualify for high end/upscale/"fine" Mexican dining. Haven't run into something like that in the metroplex.

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        Cafe San Miguel
        1907 N Henderson Ave, Dallas, TX 75206

        1. El Fuego's is consistently the best place I've eaten at.

          Lito's was about as good on most things (and cheaper) but it's closed now.

          The only time I've ever equated Mexican and high prices has been Lanny's (which was great, but it's basically Mex influenced continental).

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          El Fuego
          1891 N Plano Rd, Richardson, TX 75081

          6 Replies
          1. re: amokscience

            I Second El Fuego! Great food!

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            El Fuego
            1891 N Plano Rd, Richardson, TX 75081

            1. re: twinwillow

              I love Taqueria El Fuego too, especially the access to uncommon dishes during saturday buffet. Just hesitated since that still wouldn't match what OP is looking for, unless food is truly the priority and fine/upscale atmosphere wouldn't matter.

              Some queries turned for Lanny's yield these... Prime carne asada? Oh my.
              http://dallasfood.org/forums/viewtopi...
              http://ulteriorepicure.com/2008/09/02...

              1. re: air

                Yeah, if 'gourmet' means all the bells and whistles then El Fuego's doesn't cut it. But I'll take quality and consistency of food over just about anything.

                (What's with the restaurant links? new feature?)

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                El Fuego
                1891 N Plano Rd, Richardson, TX 75081

                1. re: air

                  air, thanks for the input. I followed the ulteriorepicure link and was wowed by the blogger's reviews. I read his/her review of York and found it to be very close to the experience that I had there a few years ago (i.e., good but not great). I definitely will check into this blog more, so I have you to thank for bringing it to my attention!

                  1. re: ponocat

                    No prob, can't wait to hear back from whatever you decide, especially with regards to whether or not Lanny's is worth the money/trip to FW.

                    I think the restaurant links are a feature they've been trying to implement for a while. before you had to use the 'add a restaurant'/manage a link button but now the forums can detect restaurant names.

                    1. re: air

                      Lanny's is worth the drive from Dallas.

            2. Cafe San Miguel is very authentic, colonial central mexico, ownership and service is great, the food is fantastic, the snapper, chile relleno, and pollo are favorites. Also, Javier's could also be considered ol'mexico, carne asada, grilled chicken, super margaritas.
              These are my two "go to" spots.

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              Cafe San Miguel
              1907 N Henderson Ave, Dallas, TX 75206

              16 Replies
              1. re: ldascha

                Love Javier's. Mia's is simple greasy Tex Mex. Manny's is good Tex Mex.

                1. re: DallasDude

                  I second Javier's. The best true Mexican in the metroplex.

                    1. re: DallasChowChick

                      Man, I have to party company with you guys re: Javiers. Might be the most overated joint in town. The food is not terrible, but it is terribly overpriced. I can live wiht over priced, but I can't live with bad service and if I'm going to spend anywhere from $100 for me and the misses or $150 for the 2 young'en, I do not, and I repeat want to be rushed to turn the table. Been going there for 20 years and just don't get it.

                      1. re: J.R.

                        A strong second from me, J.R., although most of my friends would disagree. ... I just don't get it either.

                        1. re: J.R.

                          Staying in your price comfort zone is always best. But when you say you want to party company with us I say YES! lets party!

                          1. re: DallasDude

                            I also agree with J.R.! Unless you're a "regular" at Javier's, you're just a number. Although, the food is very good.

                            1. re: twinwillow

                              Just chat up Javier. Not hard, you probably do that everywhere anyway (if you are like me).

                              1. re: DallasDude

                                I've known Javier for over 30 years. We used to both own and race Ferrari's a long, long time ago.
                                Service still sucks unless you are known as a frequent customer willing to spend big bucks.
                                It's like the Mexican version of Bob's Chop House. Same customer base. But, as I said before, the food is delicious

                                1. re: twinwillow

                                  Doesn't he remind you of Jeffe (El Guapo) from The Three Amigos? Tell me I am lying.

                                  1. re: DallasDude

                                    Javier is much better looking (LOL).

                            2. re: DallasDude

                              It's not a price comfort zone issue as much as it is principle. Great resto's offer great service to everyone. I don't want to chat up El Jeffe to get good service nor do I want to wax his very garrish car sitting in front. I want a meal that is served at a reasonable pace for the price and quality...that's it.

                                1. re: twinwillow

                                  Well damn guys, I won't do battle for him. Some like some don't. meh.

                        2. re: ldascha

                          Idascha, you didn't weigh in on El Fuego. Have you been there? If so, how do you rank San Miguel, Javiers, and El Fuego? Not just in terms of authenticity, but also in creativity and complexity.

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                          El Fuego
                          1891 N Plano Rd, Richardson, TX 75081