First Look and Sneak Peak at Mexican Sugar, from the Velvet Taco and Whiskey Cake folks
A few months ago, we broke the news that the brain trust behind Whiskey Cake, The Ranch at Las Colinas, and Velvet Taco was developing another concept that had been percolating for a while: a Latin-inspired restaurant called Mexican Sugar. Now, they’re ready to swing open the heavy wooden front door and open for business early next week.
“Probably Monday or Tuesday,” November 4 or 5, is what Jack Gibbons, one of MS’s partners, told me during a VIPreview for the Hatch earlier this week. “We’ll open when we’re sure our staff is ready.”
Mexican Sugar inhabits the space once known as Coast Global Seafood in the Shops at Legacy in Plano. But you won’t recognize any of it. Even the front entrance has been relocated.
“We set out to create a restaurant and gathering place where we could serve foods you’d fine across Latin America, not just Mexico, plus dozens and dozens of unique craft cocktails and spirits,” Gibbons told me. “It’s lighter, fresher, better,” added Randy DeWitt, another partner in the venture. “It’s Mexico City as a base, with a passport to all over Latin America,” is how Gibbons described it.
So in addition to tacos and salads, you’ll find ahogada tortas (pork carnitas with black beans, pickled onions, tomatoes and a spicy chile broth), a killer hamburguesa (the burger meat is a coarse grind of chuck and skirt steak, a blend that’s fantastically juicy and meaty), plus griddled arepas, heady tortilla soup, whole grilled snapper, guajillo-rubbed chicken, and the best quatro leches cake maybe ever. Eric Justice runs the kitchen and developed the menu with corporate chef John Franke.
Sean Connor, the man behind the cocktails at Whiskey Cake, also runs the bar operations at Mexican Sugar. He’s curated a bar program unique to Dallas, too — 136 tequilas, 34 mescals, 4 Latin beers on tap and 14 cocktails on tap, each an overnight vacuum infusion of spirits, herbs and fresh fruits. To amp up the program, the bar presses its own sugar cane, using the juice to sweeten drinks (the press is to the right of the bar). Barrel-aged cocktails, too, and nine types of ice, including some that are chipped by hand or molded into big blocks for rocks drinks.
The restaurant has a comfortable Latin industrial feel about it, a design from Dallas-based Plan B. Dark woods, cork floors, barrel ceilings faced with brick, pressed tin, Edison bulbs, open kitchen, plenty of big, open spaces with fireplaces so you can linger deep into the night.
Give Mexican Sugar a call next week to see what day you should pop by.
UPDATE: I’ve posted a couple of video tours here.
Mexican Sugar, 7501 Lone Star Drive, Plano, 214-732-5132.