One of Dallas' most revered exports is officially open in San Antonio. As of Monday, March 8, Velvet Taco has opened its first location at Rim Crossing at 5515 N. Loop 1604 W.
Known for its "adventurous" take on the humble dish, the restaurant offers more than 20 "globally inspired" tacos, including spicy tikka chicken, beer-battered cauliflower, fish 'n' chips, and slow-roasted angus brisket. The result, the restaurant says, is "a new food category, featuring a range of diverse, international flavors."
"It's a huge responsibility and honor to enter a market like San Antonio, where people know good tacos and have high expectations — yet we're not a Tex-Mex place," explains CEO Clay Dover in a release. "At Velvet Taco, we take the tortilla as our vessel and layer the best possible ingredients and diverse flavors inside to create gourmet tacos for the adventurous, risk-taking foodie."
The new Rim location — the brand's 20th overall — boasts a 2,500-square-foot dining room as well as an outdoor patio with seating for 20. Murals commissioned specially for the new restaurant line the interior walls, including one entitled I Love San Antonio. It also features a drive-up window where customers can snag orders placed through the Velvet Taco app.
Downtown diners, meanwhile, won't have wait too long for their own Velvet Taco location, which opens near the Pearl on March 22. Along with the same menu of internationally inspired tacos, the 103 W. Grayson St. location will also feature a walk-up window for margaritas and beers.
If the address sounds familiar, it's the former site of Taco Land. According to a release, Velvet Taco is paying homage to the famed restaurant, including preserving original murals and honoring Taco Land's late owner, Ram Ayala, with a new exterior art piece and a plaque.
"We want to honor and pay our respects to Ram, who served great food while nurturing the city's alternative music scene as 'The Patron Saint of Punk,'" said general manager Chris Phelps. "We aren't trying to be Taco Land. We just want to give San Antonians great food while remembering a very special place they once loved. As someone who grew up in this city, I know how unique and diverse San Antonio is, and Velvet Taco reflects just that."