Downtown dining does not end at Sundance Square.
Both One City Place and The Tower have spicy new restaurants, with The Tower adding a prime steakhouse by the holidays.
The casual Salsa Limón Centro and the more upscale Wild Salsa are both open, and both worth a try for a habanero-sauce warmup on Parade of Lights weekend.
Mercury Chop House is expected to reopen by mid-December in The Tower, moving from Sundance into the space left by Vivo 53. More about that in a moment.
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Salsa Limón Centro is the newest location for Ramiro (Milo) Ramirez’s Mexico City-style tacos. The morning starts with breakfast tacos or migas, with offerings stretching through lunch and dinner burritos, salads and tortas to late night.
The signature taco is El Capitan, filled with a choice of seven meats, avocado or veggies.
Yet more salsa
Wild Salsa is drawing diners to One City Place, the new shops on Throckmorton Street in the former Tandy Center.
Wild Salsa’s flashy decor includes fire-pit patios along the West Second Street pedestrian area. The patio setting invites downtown pedestrians for “wild hour” in late afternoon and also weekends after 10 p.m., when signature drinks and sangria are $5, a pitcher of margs is $25 and queso, sopes or taquitos are $5.
The vast menu offers fajitas, enchiladas and tacos. On your way out, grab a complementary ice cream mini-paleta.
A Chop House Burger (the Dallas-Euless version) will open soon next door, with a Hooters now approved nearby; cityplacefortworth.com.
A second Chop
Mercury Chop House, the prime steakhouse displaced last summer from Sundance Square, will reopen within weeks in the Tower, taking the Taylor Street space that was recently home to the ill-defined Vivo 53.
Mercury owner Zack Moutaouakil hopes to open Thanksgiving Day long enough to keep his tradition of serving police and firefighters on holidays, but full service may not begin for a few days.
Plans call for carpet throughout, curtains and sound baffling to mute the stark interior. (Like Salsa Limón and all the restaurants in The Tower, it’s built around the skyscraper’s concrete support pillars.)
Moutaouakil said he’s thrilled to see support for locally owned downtown restaurants such as Picchi Pacchi, which recently moved to 411 W. Seventh St., near Lamar Street.
“I hope people realize there are not many locally owned Picchi Pacchis and Chop Houses left,” he said: “The big companies are taking over. But we’re keeping it local.”
Mercury Chop House was originally part of the Dallas-based Mi Cocina parent company and affiliated with The Mercury in Dallas. Mercury chef Chris Ward designed the original menu, and it opened in 2000 when it was one of only two prime steakhouses downtown.
Moutaouakil, then the general manager, bought the restaurant in 2008 and built a reputation for reliable steaks, a white-tablecloth lunch and brunch, and community fundraisers.
The new location is oddly numbered as 525 Taylor St., but it’s on the corner where 501 would normally be; fortworthchophouse.com.