Restaurants / Openings

Dallas’ Hottest New Restaurant Goes Far Beyond Tex-Mex, But It Will Play Dumb

Star International Chef to Ease Diners Into Bold Flavors

BY // 11.09.17

Jalisco Norte is now serving authentic Mexican fare in Turtle Creek Village. The new restaurant aims to ease Dallas diners out of their Tex Mex comfort zone and redefine what they think of as “Mexican” food.

Internationally-trained Chef Jose Meza Arroyave is at the helm of the culinary project. Meza came to Jalisco Norte from Hotel Nizuc in Cancun, and previously had experience at high-profile restaurants including Rene Redzepi’s NOMA in Copenhagen, Denmark, and Enrique Olvera’s Pujol in Mexico City. The chef has a well-rounded understanding of Mexican flavors and ingredients from across various regions.

At Jalisco Norte, Meza plans to introduce Dallas to authentic Mexican flavors – but he knows that some people will be hesitant to stray from Tex Mex. The menu includes a few of Meza’s twists on familiar items, like nachos and enchiladas, to help ease picky eaters into trying more adventurous things.

“Right now we don’t want to confuse people. We want them to have something that they understand and then start doing different or more bold flavors,” Meza tells PaperCity. “We felt like Dallas was ready to do something else.”

The more authentic side of the menu features dishes like pork chop manchamanteles, a regional mole of fruit, dried chiles and roasted peach; chilaquiles; Vallarta-style ceviche and more.

Beverage director Trevor Landry took a similar approach with the bar program.

“We want to win them over — ease people into something a little bit different,” he says.

The agave-forward cocktail menu is centered around Meza’s food, and includes an array of drinks from the familiar to the unknown. The hand-picked selection of spirits includes tequila, mezcal, sotol and bacanora. There is also a new-age salt program with different salts to enhance the flavors.

The eatery is operated by NL Group, which is also behind DISH, Dakota’s Steakhouse and Front Room Tavern. NL Group partnered with Coeval Studio to design an inviting, trendy space. The restaurant’s layout was inspired by Central American-European homes, with several unique rooms.

Lonchería, a walk-up market located near the entrance, is expected to open in the coming weeks for customers on-the-go.

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