Marji Laine

I Love a Good Mystery!

Texas Living: El Fenix


El FenixDowntown frontDallas, Texas

Since my current series takes place in my hometown, I thought you might want to get some experiences from the city where Jay and Dani do their thing. And if you have no idea what I’m talking about, by all means, please check out this information page or better yet, just download this great new book here!

This downtown location of Dallas restaurant chain El Fenix is where I planted the … um … interesting interaction between Dani and Jay. If you look straight through the sign to the left of the building, you’re looking directly toward the West End of downtown Dallas, a pretty hot night spot and touristy type of place. El Fenix

But I’m more familiar with a location further north. See El Fenix has always been my first choice of night-out locations! And the one hubby and I go to the most often is pictured here. This was the interior that I used for that portion of the description.

Mike Martinez developed his special Tex-Mex flair by offering samples to the customers at his American-food restaurant. After several years of research, he opened his first El Fenix, just across the street from the above restaurant nearly 100 years ago.  Now, there are twenty-five locations sprinkled in and around Dallas.

This was one of my favorite restaurants to visit when I was growing up. (The Satillo Plate was my favorite!) So when I needed a typical Dallas setting in my novella, GRIME BEAT, I didn’t have to think about it for long.

I’ve been to many of the different locations, but my favorites are the one in Addison and the main restaurant in downtown Dallas. I can honestly say that I can’t remember a time when that El Fenix wasn’t in downtown. And as I did my research for this article, I found out why. According to the history of El Fenix, the downtown location was moved when I was only a year old. The place is a staple for the West End along with the Old Spaghetti Warehouse and the JFK Memorial.

But tradition isn’t the only reason I love visiting this place. I’ve lived in North Texas all my life, but I’m not a fan of spicy food. My husband likes the dragon sauce, but I’m more of a mild type of gal. I love that El Fenix serves food on the milder side. Now, my hubby will ladle the spiciest sauce onto every inch of his platter, but it’s easy to add and impossible to remove.

Their Tex-Mex offers authentic local flavors in an elegant environment without the upscale, exclusive prices that so many downtown restaurants demand. It’s no wonder they get so much of my family business along with group events and even an occasional take out meal!

Your turn: What’s a favorite restaurant in your home town?

Author: Marji Laine

Marji is a recently "graduated" homeschooling mom whose twin girls have blessed her by sticking around the nest for a little longer. She spends her days directing the children’s music program at her church and working with the authors of Write Integrity Press to put out the best possible version of their books. Raised in suburban Dallas, she got her first taste of writing through the stories of brilliant authors of their day, Mignon Eberhart and Phyllis A. Whitney, and through stage experience. After directing and acting in productions for decades, Marji started writing her own scripts. From that early beginning, she delved into creating scintillating suspense with a side of Texas sassy. She invites readers to unravel their inspiration, seeking a deeper knowledge of the Lord’s Great Mystery that invites us all.

6 thoughts on “Texas Living: El Fenix

  1. I grew up in North Texas, too. When I saw this post, immediately I heard their old radio jingle in my head. “El Fenix…El Fenix…” 😉 Thanks for the memories! (But if it’s still in my head in the middle of the night, I’m blaming you, Marji. Ha ha!)

    Liked by 1 person

    • LOL! Feel free to fuss at me if the jingle revisits. (Or thoughts of their chips and queso, tacos, sopapillas…. They’re haunting! Bwahahahahahaha!) 🙂


  2. We have a really good seafood place on the Tennessee river we like to go to…

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