Local-conscious Peak & Elm to opens its doors Friday
Published: Sunday, February 10, 2013
Updated: Sunday, February 10, 2013 20:02
A new restaurant has come to add to the soul of Deep Ellum. Peak & Elm Cocina y Bar opened its doors Friday. The Mexican restaurant will boast a fusion of contemporary Mexican food with the authentic and traditional cuisine of its sister restaurant, La Popular Tamale House.
“I’ve been in Dallas my whole life, and my family has been here for generations. Now, we want to give back to the East Dallas community,” said Jesse Moreno Jr., owner of Peak & Elm.
Jesse Moreno Sr. founded La Popular Tamale House in 1984, which was recognized as one of USA Today’s Most Popular in 2012, and on Friday the Moreno family continued on in the family business with the opening of Peak & Elm.
The menu boasts items from tamale pie to ceviche to tacos tapitos all with a bit of a modern flare. In addition to the more contemporary side of the food, the entire menu will consist of handmade ingredients, all lard- and gluten-free, and provide vegetarian and vegan options, announced Peak & Elm in a press release.
Instead of the traditional chips and salsa, Peak & Elm takes a slightly different approach to getting their customers started.
“It’s extremely fresh food,” Jessica Craycraft, as she finished chewing a bite of ceviche, said. “They start you off with veggies soaked in vinegar to get you ready for what’s to come.”
Craycraft said she enjoyed not feeling “heavy” right off the bat, as she usually does after eating Mexican food.
The handmade, healthy food is not the only interesting aspect about Peak & Elm’s cuisine. Peak & Elm will be turning to local vendors such as the Mozzarella Company, Empire Bread and Texas Honeybee for food and Times Ten Cellars for wine.
With the emphasis on the local vendors also comes an emphasis on the East Dallas community. The atmosphere in the small, one-room restaurant is nothing but welcoming, and it is clear from the pictures covering the walls that the neighborhood of East Dallas is the inspiration and focus of the Moreno family’s restaurant.
“We want to create a vibrant environment, full of fun and clean food for the community,” said Moreno, as he walked toward the bar, laying his hand on one of the doorknobs dotting the side.
Moreno went on to explain how the bar is made from old doors from houses of the East Dallas community. It is just another subtle display of the affection the Moreno family feels for the neighborhood from which they come.