Pera Wine & Tapas Is Open in North Dallas, Makes Really Nice Use of an Old Taco Bueno

Categories: First Look
Photos by Kathryn DeBruler
Ah, yes, Taco Bueno buildings. Such distinct architecture, so difficult to mask. But dammit if Habip Kargin, chef and owner of Pera Wine and Tapas, hasn't tried. This particular former Taco Bueno, near the corner of Belt Line and Preston, has been reincarnated several times over the years. It's been a fish fry, two burger joints and now, having reached enlightenment, a tapas bar. Pera Wine and Tapas is the second restaurant-child for Kargin, who opened Pera Turkish Kitchen in 2012. The white-washed stucco façade is not enough to conceal the building's roots, but once inside it's easy to forget about the sour cream guns. They've exorcised the ghosts of Crunchwrap Supremes. They've used warm neutrals, dark walls and white tablecloths to transform a once corporate and sterile environment into an intimate and inviting one. The interior retains an open layout, with a long rectangular bar stretching from the entrance back to the kitchen, which is tucked from view. Wining and dining on the patio, which faces Belt Line, represents a departure in ambience. While the staff has worked to keep the elements at bay, twinkly lights and potted plants can't quite distract from the surrounding scenery of cars zipping by and the office park across the street. The window dressings can't distract, no, but the food and booze can.


Pera has a nice selection of wines to choose from, most of which can be purchased by the glass -- prices range from $5 to $13 -- or by the bottle, which could set you back as little as $16 or as much as $300. The single-page food menu is divided in half by price, either $6 or $12 per plate. Remember that the idea behind tapas contradicts the American ethos -- "if that chicken fried steak doesn't completely encompass my hubcap of a plate, I'm taking my business elsewhere" -- by encouraging small portions of different dishes. The less expensive options slant towards vegetarian, including white asparagus with poached egg, tomato burrata salad and grilled eggplant caviar. My dining companion and I agreed that the octopus carpaccio, also $6, was the best seafood that can suck you back we had ever eaten, so tender and mild. It was topped with arugula, capers and shreds of fennel, all tossed together in a bracingly acidic vinaigrette. We're talking a four to one acid/oil ratio, people.


The $12 plates offer diners a veritable zoo to order from, including filet mignon, Cornish hen, lamb chop, sea bass and short ribs. The seared quail with pomegranate molasses and a parsnip puree was life-affirming.


On a recent Thursday evening, the crowd was small in number but strong enough in annual adjusted gross income to really do a number on an Ann Taylor sale. Troy Dungan was even there. If that's not a ringing endorsement for a new restaurant I don't know what is. 

Pera Wine & Tapas 
6006 Belt Line Rd. 
Dallas, TX 75254

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Oh boy, look at that fantastic patio view of the parking lot.......the only view better in the metro is Senior Loco's, overlooking a wrecked out garage on Parker Road, in Plano. 

And I'd like to thank Lorison Crocket for inventing GenoStem, just for me!  "Well that thucks"; very cool lisp man! I'd also like to thank the makers of Vigorfit (Goldie) and Mental Bright.......and whatever fad is popular now.  How about you DON'T take a bunch of pills, and instead eat a a Salad, and go for a walk? 

I'd like to thank the academy.  I'd like to thank Budweiser.  I know, I know, you aren't cool unless you drink "custom" beers that taste like mud, and wear a fedora and sport brewers beard. 

I'd also like to thank the lady at Walmart who smelled so bad I nearly ran out of the store. I was literally holding my breath as that stench wafted over my smelled like a cross between curry, old motor oil and an abandoned chicken neck, in a South Houston bar ditch. 

I'd like to thank 15 Bean Soup, which I am making a big O' pot of.  Goes well with:

-Shrimp Ceviche; it's been marinating for 3 days!

-Caprice Salad

-Honey Lime Chicken Breast, smoked over Mimosa wood, with a Tabasco Peanut Sauce

-Bud Light

Ps-Finally, I'd like to thank Stephenville's Brock Holt for single highhandedly saving my Red Sox season, by hitting great in the leadoff spot (3.26), and playing spectacular defense at every position he's been at.  He's already one of my favorite Sawx of all time, right up with Dewey, Luis, Fisk, Yaz, Conigs, Vern Stephens, Teddy B., The Babe, CY Young, Pedro, Papi and Pedi.

On my way now to take a nice hike in The Caddo National Grasslands, maybe spot a bear.  I'm taking the beans and chicken with, so, it's GOING to be a party; maybe head over on 70 to Beavers Bend; do a little trout fishin', maybe run a little white water in the kayak. 

HST-“buy the ticket…take the ride”.  The great HST!


@kergo1spaceship Caddo should be very green with all of the recent rain.

primi_timpano topcommenter

.326? And no Fred Lynn? Priceless story about Lynn in Bill James' Historical Baseball Almanac. Would also add the Spaceman.


@bigjondaniel @kergo1spaceship

Hey, Big Jon!  

You know me, no editing in summer/vacation months.........I'm frickin' stewed this month sir.

ps-Much respect, we had some epic battles. I will take editing come July (tomorrow), July is exercise month, and I deliver with much more clarity....which means less posts. July is the month to go to New Hampshire, the month to go Colorado-yay!  Ok, maybe I do need an "edit".  Point well taken. 



From the east it looks like an old Jake's...oh wait, it is!  Bring Jake's back. No finer place to have a couple of beers, a couple of shots of tequila, some fried bottle caps and a couple of drafts.

I miss Jake's, the Flaming Rooster, those Sweet Tater Fries-mmmmm. 



Oh shite, I forgot Freddy Lynn, who won the ROY/MVP in 1975.  Bill Lee, who used to drive 100 down my street in a beat up sports car.  Also, George Scott, Rico P., Denny Doyle, Jim Rice, Bernie Carbo, Rick Wise and Jim Longborg. I deliberately did not mention Boggs and Clemens...ya'll can have them! 

primi_timpano topcommenter

I still resent Longborg for breaking his leg skiing. But what a 67 season. I loved that team.

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