Restaurants / Openings

Modest Rogers Brings Venezuelan-Influenced Cuisine to Oak Lawn

What To Try at The New Fairmount Street Spot

BY // 12.06.21

A new Spanish restaurant has taken over an old home at 3811 Fairmount Street in Oak Lawn and is now serving a seasonal menu with a Texas twist and Venezuelan influences. Modest Rogers comes from former sous chef of Nonna and Carbone’s, Modesto Rodriguez.

Rodriguez was born in Venezuela but grew up in West Texas. Many of the dishes at Modest Rogers (an old high school nickname) reflect this combination of Texan, South American, and even Mexican flavors. Currently, the restaurant is waiting for their liquor license, but you can BYOB.

Inside the small restaurant, an open kitchen entertains about six or seven tables. Out front, there is a charming patio that was perfect for a warm, December day this past weekend, though heaters are on hand.

Modest RogersThe carne asada is a must-try dish at Modest Rogers. (Photo by Megan Ziots)

5 Must-Try Dishes at Modest Rogers

The best way to dine at Modest Rogers is to share a few dishes. Items tend to rotate, but one that stays on the menu is the carne asada. A 10-ounce Texas wagyu steak is cooked at medium rare and topped with an addictive chimichurri sauce. It comes with a side of marble potatoes and arugula salad to balance out all that meat.

Another must-try, and my favorite of the night, is the spicy cauliflower and onions. It’s cauliflower battered in a spice blend and served with caper aioli. We couldn’t get enough of these crunchy bites dipped in a perfectly salty and creamy sauce. Also, don’t miss the pork short rib topped with mofongo (make sure to get a generous scoop). Creamier than other mofongo dishes that I’ve had, I finished every last bite.

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Lastly, the grilled shrimp and mariquitas is another flavorful starter with Gulf shrimp (marinated in garlic and cilantro). It’s served with a roasted tomato salsa, red onions, and mariquitas (or plantain chips). The shrimp is toasty, and the pickled onion offers a sweet and sour addition.

There is one dessert on the menu and for good reason: the quesillo (or Venezuelan flan). It’s heavier than a classic flan, but still lovely. Rodriguez makes it with citrus flavors, using brandy and orange juice instead of rum, and tops it with edible flowers.

Modesto Rogers is open Tuesday through Saturday for dinner, and Thursday and Friday for lunch. Lunch menu items include a cheeseburger, steak tip sandwich, and grilled cheese.

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