South Texas Flavor

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We're always looking for more places to highlight in our South Texas Flavor series. If you have any suggestions, let us know! We're always hungry.

Pepe’s mole en pollo is a delightful discovery

HARLINGEN — There’s a rumbling, a stirring and an excitement in conversation over a noon meal that brings freshness and lift after a rather dismal morning.

Vegan eatery in McAllen surpasses irrational carnivorous expectations

McALLEN — María Cruz - Plant Based Cuisine is strange, but in a good way.

‘Mexican Bites’ on Central Boulevard in Brownsville basks in breakfast delight

BROWNSVILLE — There's a hot stretch of road along a less traveled part of the city where a small restaurant grabs my attention with its bright yellow facade and colorful signs.

Teddy’s Barbecue in Weslaco is mecca for the South Texas faithful

WESLACO — My editor, Mark Reagan, has been nagging me about going to review Teddy’s Barbecue since he read about them in the “failing New York Times.”

Joe’s Ice Cream has 52 reasons for you to chill out this summer

McALLEN — This sweltering, unrelenting triple-digit heat calls for something ice cold.

Alicia’s Mexican Restaurant is an out of the way place for everyday folks

HARLINGEN — On a slower part of town away from the busier places sits a restaurant that can appear invisible by its permanence.

Wings are champ at Kiri Kiri Korean Fried Chicken

McALLEN — My editor suggested that I write a review about a barbecue restaurant, but then my girlfriend said that she wanted something different.

Fares Arabic Cuisine in McAllen serving up delectable meals, friendly service

McALLEN — Apparently, my reviews have become too predictable.

Las Cazuelas in Harlingen a fine Tex Mex Restaurant with good food

HARLINGEN — There’s a power in the presence of age, in the continuity of the past extending into the moment with an anticipation of tomorrow.

Smoke Crafters brisket enchiladas are a truly Tex-Mex experience

MISSION — Good dining experiences can create unforgettable experiences in the same way a bad experience can ruin a day — it’s in the way that the quality of the food and the service wields a transformative effect on our minds and moods.

McAllen’s Taquerias Tlaquepaque Hnos evokes memories of Matamoros street tacos

McALLEN — Taquerias Tlaquepaque Hnos is an unassuming restaurant sandwiched in between a slew of other businesses at a small plaza on North 10th Street in McAllen.

Captain Bob’s Seafood Restaurant in Brownsville a fine fusion flavor, personality

BROWNSVILLE — A pirate with a wooden leg greets me the moment I walk into Captain Bob’s Seafood Restaurant.

San Benito barbecue joint not just blowing smoke with brisket tacos

SAN BENITO — Pappasito’s Smokehouse And Then Some sits on the corner of East Stenger Street and East Milam Street in a building that for many years housed the Diamond G Food Store, a staple for many San Benitians throughout the 70s, 80s and 90s.

Harlingen’s Taqueria El Buen Pastor a fine place for food and conversation

HARLINGEN — The city streets have entered the dead zone of the hot mid afternoon, and I find refuge in the colorful dining room of Taqueria El Buen Pastor.

La Hacienda a grand portrait of flavor and experience in San Benito

SAN BENITO — I’ve been out driving throughout the day, my trips taking me several times through the center of the city.

Brownsville’s Ostioneria La Fragata offers fine Mexican seafood

BROWNSVILLE – There’s a small seafood restaurant along the farther reaches of town, where cars along a busy thoroughfare have already broken away to their separate destinations.

The Mid-Valley’s Doña Paz is a fine restaurant with personality

WESLACO — There’s nothing better than a Sunday breakfast of chorizo and eggs and fine coffee — except breakfast in the company of others.

Jose’s Cafecito, a Weslaco staple, housed on first floor of Villa de Cortez

WESLACO — A boy in a starched shirt cuts eagerly into his soaked pancake, speaking quickly to his parents eating slowly for the joy of the moment.

J&B’s a clean and pleasant place with good food, service

HARLINGEN — I step into the peaceful diner and look over a blackboard covered with the house specials.

Dirty Al’s offers a clean, well-lighted place to enjoy good food and friendship

BROWNSVILLE — A blue marlin dives toward a table of diners; its flight frozen in mid-air by a taxidermist.

Blanquita’s in Harlingen offers both simplicity and extravagance

HARLINGEN — I step out of the November cold into the warm restaurant and wait for instructions.

La Playa in Harlingen is a fine place to eat

HARLINGEN — It’s a Tuesday night at La Playa Mexican Café, and the warm lights spread from the ceiling and fall onto wooden tables and tiled floors while country music fill the dinner air.

Moran’s Pizzeria in Mercedes prompted applause and love at first bite

MERCEDES — The first time I’d heard of the legendary Hot Cheeto pizza from Moran’s Pizzeria, I was on the phone with my soon-to-be girlfriend.

‘Gringa’ plate at Calaca’s Tacos and Beer has a San Benito twist

SAN BENITO — It’s late afternoon. The mood at Calaca’s Tacos and Beer is quiet and refreshing.

Pollo en mole just hits different at Anita’s Cafe in Edinburg

EDINBURG — The writing on a wall when you first enter Anita’s Cafe reads, “Overthinking will destroy your happiness and your mood.”