After announcing last month that she’d revamp The Cedars Social with a new name and menu, serial restaurateur Monica Greene will unveil Monica’s Mex-Tex Cantina as the eatery’s new concept.
Greene called Eater with the news, which was followed by a press release touting a “grown up” Greene helming the kitchen who is described as “older, more serious, and gracious, yet still funky.” When Greene announced the new direction following Chef Anastacia Quiñones’ departure from The Cedars Social, she aimed to bring in more crowd-pleasing Tex-Mex offerings while not losing authentic Mexican cuisine as the basis for the menu (hence “Mex” being listed before “Tex” in the new name). In a phone call with Eater, Greene waxed poetic about the changing landscape of Tex-Mex and Mexican food, particularly in Dallas. “It is so blurry,” she says. “There are a lot of restaurants making good Mexican food look like Tex-Mex in order to sell it, and there are a lot of good restaurants serving Tex-Mex disguised as Mexican food in order to attain attention. We fall in between.”
Greene will be cooking up the new offerings herself until she finds a chef who shares her vision, and updating the menu weekly with new additions. Recent offerings included jalapeño vermicelli pasta with chicken, shrimp, garlic, pico de gallo, whole roasted corn, black beans, and cilantro bechamel; and redfish with sautéed fresh veggies in a light white lemon caper sauce, alongside new additions of chicken enchiladas with tomatillo, poblano, or mole sauce, and fajitas with grilled peppers and onions. Those bemoaning the disappearance of tacos from the space will be glad to know Greene is planning a handful of weekly specials including “Taco Tuesdays” with “unique selections” for $3 and $4, plus enchilada specials on Wednesdays and half-priced wine pairings on Mondays. “We’re going to have cuisine that brings the right attention to Mexican food, while still serving the community,” she says.
Look for Monica’s Mex-Tex Cantina to debut on November 8, with weekly specials to roll out on November 15.