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La Reunion Opens in Bishop Arts With the Holy Grail of Espresso Machines

The all-day operation also serves house-made bacon and dozens of wines to start

Pulling a shot of espresso La Reunion [Official Photo]

La Reunion just brought the Bishops Arts District a new day-to-night spot to sip espresso shots pulled by a first-of-its-kind machine for Texas.

Modbar AV is the result of years of collaborative R&D between Modbar and La Marzocco. Coffee beans will be roasted on-site in a custom roaster stationed just inside the front door.

The 8 a.m.-to-noon menu at La Reunion (229 N. Bishop Avenue, Dallas), which opened on Friday, November 1, includes French toast “flights” served on sourdough baguettes with whipped goat cheese and seasonal jams; a croque madame; and breakfast tart topped with parsley pesto, heirloom tomatoes, and gruyere.

La Reunion comes from caffeine aficionado Mike Mettendorf, who kicked off his career at Caribou Coffee in 2005 as a teen, working up the barista ranks and going on to open State Street Coffee inside The Alcove in 2013. In charge of the coffee program at La Reunion is general manager Ali Abderrahman, who was the highest-placing barista from Texas in the 2019 U.S. Barista Championship.

Caffeine at La Reunion
Artsy cappuccinos at La Reunion.
La Reunion/official photo

Executive chef Matt Smith is doing all accoutrements like pickles, rillettes, and mayonnaise in-house. Smith also cures his own pork belly to make bacon, which appears in the avocado breakfast sandwich alongside zaa’tar and with mussels for afternoon hours.

Mussels at La Reunion
Mussels steamed in a Pernod cream sauce with house bacon, heirloom tomatoes, and parsley, served with warm French bread.
La Reunion/official photo

The menu flips at noon, offering pressed chicken sandwiches, charcuterie, and red wine poached pear for dessert until 10 p.m.

Ian Montgomery, level 2 sommelier and owner of Bishop Arts’ Neighborhood Cellar, curated a wine list focused on small producers and mom-and-pop craft wines. He expects to eventually expand the lineup from about 40 to 100 labels. For cocktails, riffs on classics include a French 75 with lavender syrup and a pecan-bourbon Old Fashioned jazzed up with Kyoto cold brew.

Hours are 8 a.m. to 10 p.m. daily or later.

Interior at La Reunion
Owner Mike Mettendorf doubled as general contractor on the project, dressing up the space with custom couches and artwork from his own collection.
La Reunion/official photo