Maple & Motor, Breadwinners, Gonzalez: The New Guy and His Cholesterol Have Been Busy

Categories: Whimsy
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Maple & Motor: your best suggestion yet.
Throughout April, the New Guy is only eating at places suggested by City of Ate readers, in a futile attempt to speed his conversion to Texasism. Have a suggestion? Leave it in the comments or hit us on Twitter at @cityofate and @joeptone.

I've been faithfully heeding your dining suggestions, dear readers, and they've led me to some interesting places: deep into Ellum, down a cool stretch of Jefferson in Oak Cliff and into the shiny happy peopleness of North Dallas.

But let's start at my new favorite meal and a declaration that nearly made a couple staffers walk out of our weekly meeting.
Sorry if it's cliche, but Maple & Motor -- suggested by a couple different commenters -- is solid. I'm guessing it feels over-hyped by this point, and I'm sure there are diners who don't take kindly to owner Jack Perkins' take-it-or-leave-it approach. But, visiting on Saturday night I sort of dug the sign instructing you to wait until ordering to take your seat, along with the simplicity of the menu. There's a certain swagger to the place, and they back it up with the burger, one of the better straight up cheeseburgers I've had in a while -- certainly higher on my list than the also-solid Angry Dog burger. (I mentioned this at our staff meeting Monday morning. It didn't go over well.)

I was a little thrown off by M&M's RC Cola machine, but I'm thinking that's something I should get used to?

Earlier, I'd ventured into Oak Cliff for some Tex-Mex. My new theory: There are lots of places to get good Mexican over there, and I picked the wrong one. Or, rather, reader Carl picked the wrong one. "For Tex-Mex, only place to go is Gonzalez on Jefferson in the Cliff." The only place! I better go then!

Here's what I had:

gonzalez.jpg





It tasted as good as it looks -- not awesome, not terrible, just an average plate of enchiladas tucked comfortably under a thick blanket of sour cream.

Another reader suggested Allgood Cafe in Deep Ellum. So late Sunday morning, my Dallas Morning News and I made our way through the throng -- people everywhere, strewn about the sidewalk and the street -- and got our name on the list for a two-top. As you can see from the photo ...

allgood1.jpg


... I misordered. Went basic eggs-and-bacon when I should have done something more elaborate. It was fine, but nothing I couldn't make myself if I knew how to cook. Sort of slow service too, but who's in a hurry at noon on a Sunday?

A couple readers suggested Breadwinners for breakfast. In fact, I have probably had five or six breakfast-themed conservations since arriving in Dallas, and no other place has been mentioned (aside from the one Allgood comment). There's a lot of Bread-winning going on at Breadwinners. It's always packed, as it was when I visited on Saturday morning.

I definitely get it. Fun, diverse menu, upbeat vibe, fast and friendly service -- all hallmarks of a good brunch spot. Food's well executed too, although there's about 74 percent too much of it in each dish, including my Farmhouse tacos, which were the approximate size of an actual farmhouse:

breadwinners1.jpg





Very solid meal. But as an eight-day veteran of the Dallas food scene, I believe strongly we need to diversify our breakfast recommendations. (Eight days is enough to start bossing you guys around, right?)

Location Info

Maple & Motor

4810 Maple Ave., Dallas, TX

Category: Restaurant

Bread Winners Cafe and Bakery

4021 Preston Road, Plano, TX

Category: Restaurant


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44 comments
TJ2Maxx
TJ2Maxx

Chiloso in rockwall or Richardson has the best breakfast tacos. They will change your life!

gabbahey
gabbahey

As a resident of this city for 40 years, I've seen a lot of hamburgers, but nothing in this city compares to the Bacon Jalapeno Burger at Gonzales.

The patty itself is HUGE, handmade, with chopped jalapeno and chopped onion blended into the ground beef, prior to cooking. I can't recommend it enough, try it!

G_David
G_David

I've done the Trail of Tacos more than once, and most of the suggestions here are solid, especially El Guero. However, I just had a dark horse enter the race and run away with the crown. San Diego Tacos in Irving on Story. It's not exactly down the street, but if you happen to be in the neighborhood, they're easily the best tacos I've had aroundhere, and they're exactly $1 each.

As for RC cola, it is NOT something you should EVER get used to. And it's reason #8 why I have no use for Maple and Motor.

Freedomrock
Freedomrock

You're getting a ton of advice about burgers/tex mex/breakfast/and so on, but I see no mention of the fabulous Torta. So, you must go to Tortas Las Tortugas and have the Especial. Corner of Jefferson and Madison. Meat crack--you will be back. Get a horchata too.

Jill
Jill

Just went to Meddlesome Moth for the first time for Brunch and had a great experience. I had the "Badass Bacon Waffles" and they lived up to the name. Also good for brunch: Vickery Park, Smoke, La Grange

Daniel Hopkins
Daniel Hopkins

The huevos rancheros at La Duni are the best I've ever had. And the Duni Mary, the restaurant's made-from-scratch bloody mary, while it costs $10, is well worth it.

Sam_Merten
Sam_Merten

I'm with you on Maple & Motor, Joe. As for breakfast, you can't go wrong with Original Market Diner near the office.

foodbitch
foodbitch

Word to the wise about Maple & Motor: Avoid the brisket. I made the mistake of ordering it (brisket is one of my many "magic words") and it was a pork chop-colored, fatty, sad lunch that was completely sans seasoning. I stared longingly at my husband's burger and only managed to steal a bite. Breadwinners is a cute place to go to brunch with friends, but there are many better spots as outlined by the many peeps below. Tried Oddfellows and Crossroads this past weekend and both impressed me. But I agree with @elbueno about Smoke. Two things: brisket cornbread hash with a fried egg on top, and their apricot-blueberry pancakes. Best pancakes of my life. Enough said. Have fun eating Dallas!

xoxo,@foodbitch

Honey Badger
Honey Badger

For THE best cheeseburger ever, go to Wingfield's in Oak Cliff. 2615 South Beckley Avenue, Dallas - (214) 943-5214

DEEEEliscious!

Ojeda's in Oak Cliff has the best Wednesday night enchilada special - $5.25 and it's wonderful. Good drink prices to.

anon
anon

Effing mayo on that otherwise perfect-looking burger.....

anon
anon

Your friend on the Taco Trail just made a post about great breakfast tacos. We're a breakfast taco town. So go get some breakfast tacos!!

dfw75208
dfw75208

I have lived within walking distance of Gonzalez for seven years. We went twice and both times ended up with prettyy much inedible food (though my dogs liked it). I miuch prefer El Ranchito or Rincon Tapatio on Jefferson.

Brennan
Brennan

Breakfast - El Gordo Crepes at Cafe BrazilBrunch - La DuniTex-Mex - Pepe's & Mito'sBurger - Lakewood Landing's is better than Maple & Motor

TB
TB

You really screwed the pooch with your AllGood order. Go back and get migas, breakfast tacos, or the Hat Trick (pancakes, eggs, and bacon). Cripes, if you don't even know how to order breakfast, how are you going to make it through two more meals? (And if you give thumbs up to Breadwinners, I'm worried whether you can even cross the street safely.)

NewsDog
NewsDog

This may be a bit of a stretch but El Fuego in Richardson (Plano Rd just N of Campbell). Huevos Ranchero w/ chorizo as your meat. Awsome for breakfast.

Carl Ferrer Jrs Creamy Anus
Carl Ferrer Jrs Creamy Anus

You gotta get to Golden Ox for some freaking fried chicken livers and honey......they used to be all over the place in the 80's..

Coleman
Coleman

I don't know if I or anyone else has mentioned Cafe Brazil yet, but that is my default breakfast location on the weekends. There's like, four really good ones in Dallas proper and it's kinda hard not to have a decent meal at any particular time. I may actually prefer Metro Diner a little more, but I live closer to Cafe Brazil.

One breakfast/diner spot you should probably avoid unless the idea of shitting your pants all day is an appealing one is Buzzbrews. the one on Lemmon is particularly vile, in that it smells like their bathrooms are perpetually backed up.

JonathanG
JonathanG

Mac's BBQ on Main St. is a must visit.

Do not bother with Fuel City tacos. There are approximately 92 better taco joints. Like Taco Guero on Bryan.

Uhmm...Some suggestions that no one else might think of:

The Dairy-Ette in East Dallas. Remember not to park under the awning or you have just opted for car hop service, which is fine, but go in if its your first time. Park on the side. With the rash of burger joints popping up (In-N-Out, LoveShack, etc.) its time to remember the Dairy-Ette.

You aren't a true Dallasite until you have the Wednesday Enchilada Special at El Fenix. Its not so much about the enchiladas, as it is the tradition. They don't have king size margaritas on the menu anymore, but order one anyway. I would love to see someone write about Wednesday enchiladas at El Fenix.. How it didn't make the things in Dallas you must do list or whatever the crap it was D magazine did recently, I don't know. I suggest the Casa Linda location.

Del Norte bakery. Any of 'em will do, I think there are six. I happen to like the one on Ferguson. Not really a restaurant so to speak, but they will sell you delicious things to eat, so I am including it.

the_sneeb
the_sneeb

Agree on Smoke. How about Barbecs? Beer biscuits? No? La Victoria for breakfast burrito. I like the breakfast at Bubbas by SMU, but it's real hard to pass up a walloping Kuby's breakfast if I'm in that area. That ought to keep you busy, you friggin' yankee.

elbueno
elbueno

Oh you want brunch?

No place tops Smoke. Go. Now!

Also, Vickery Park is great.

elbueno
elbueno

Holy crap, Breadwinners?!? That place is in the echelon of overpriced mediocrity. You happen to be in a great MECCA of old school diners...so lets start with:

The Mecca...order a cinnamon roll the size of your face. maybe a plate of chorizo scrambled migas and a coffee...leave happy

Normas (Oak Cliff Original) Anything here is good. its pricier than a lot of other diners but you will not leave unsatisfied

Original Market DinerJohns Cafe (Gyro omelet!)Gold Rush Cafe (the John Wayne!)Melios Bro Char Bar

and last but not least...Metro! The most beloved location JUST closed last weekend, but the Oak Cliff location is open. And its faaaantastic.

Also, Gonzalez?!?!? Thats the worst TexMex I've ever had...sorry...i know people love it, but its awful...that salsa.........

For a good time on Jefferson, go to El Ranchito with a couple friends on a Friday night. Thank me later.

Carl Ferrer Jrs Anus
Carl Ferrer Jrs Anus

Gonzalez = Taco's are the shit= home made shells +Gonzalez = Guisado de Puerco ++Gonzalez = Tacos El Carbon +++Gonzalez = Chicken Enchi's w/ Mole++++

Don't order like a suburban shclup....Enchiladas smothered in sour cream...Come on Joe...

runDMC
runDMC

Breakfast = Crossroads DinerGet the cinnamon thingy and the hash

Lunch = Crossroads DinerBLT and the burger

primi timpano
primi timpano

Weak, tasteless bloody mary. It would suck for $2.00.

Carl Ferrer Jr
Carl Ferrer Jr

Not sure what you ordered, but I have been going to Gonazalez for close to 20 yrs now, and I have never had a bad meal there...

Gus Mitchem
Gus Mitchem

Allgood - Cant beat a bowl of Chili to start your morning !

anon
anon

Zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz.................................

Montemalone
Montemalone

El Fenix sucks.Used to be great. Grew up eating there, and I miss the all-you-can-eat buffet locations (long gone). But since they sold out, changed the hot sauce, and cut back on the quality, why waste the time to eat there?

Elizabeth Bair
Elizabeth Bair

Barbec's and La Victoria for breakfast. Kuby's for lunch or dinner (though the breakfast it great, Joe's gotta have the schnitzel and potato salad). He has to go to El Guero for a real Dallas experience: getting hit up in the parking lot by homeless dudes for cigs and cash).

Bigjondaniel
Bigjondaniel

@sneeb He's from The Bay Area. That doesn't make him a Yankee. It makes him miss fresh produce.

Carl Ferrer Jrs Anus
Carl Ferrer Jrs Anus

Agree on Smoke, The Cabrito in Masa is the shit..Disagree on Gonzalez though...Its a matter of what you order..Whats wrong with the salsa there?

cynical old bastard
cynical old bastard

What elbueno said. With the addition of Mama's Daughter's Diner on Irving Blvd. for breakfast.

Rob
Rob

Gotta agree with this - next time go for the carne guisada. The flour tortillas at Gonzalez are a think of beauty!

Joe Tone
Joe Tone

I do order like a suburban schlub sometimes. That's true.

Coleman
Coleman

Ah, another "I've been in Oak Cliff longer!" argument...is that like a favorite past-time down there, or what?

OC_yo
OC_yo

The warm salsa tastes like carmelized onions. Not my favorite. But, my God. You can't deny the yumminess of their flour tortillas. They're like pancakes. Poor ordering on Mr. Tone's part there.

Erica
Erica

I live in Oak Cliff and have for many years and yes, it is a favorite pasttime down here to contend that YOU are an OG and someone else is not. Oh, and then to curse at someone when they ask about this pasttime....

Coleman
Coleman

ooooh touched a nerve or something, asshole?

Carl Ferrer Jr.
Carl Ferrer Jr.

Didn't say I'd live in Oak Cliff, said I've been going to Gonzalez for close to 20 yrs...Try reading before commenting next time fucktard!

Carl Ferrer Jr
Carl Ferrer Jr

Thank you OC_yo..When I go there, I always ask for extra flour tortillas and make my own taquitos next morning....I love me some Gonzalez!!

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