In our constant quest for notable breakfasts, whether at home or on the road, we proudly introduce you to Aparicio’s in Plano, Tex. Plano is one of those sprawling suburbs of Dallas that absolutely teems with restaurants, but a good breakfast is as hard to come by there as it is almost anywhere else in the country. We were in Dallas for a family Thanksgiving, and Aparicio’s was the perfect spot to take in morning fuel for the 11-hour drive home.
Aparicio’s is family-owned. For 20 years, first as a place to buy carry-out tortillas, then as a small, neighborhood eatery, it now has been through a complete rebuilding on the other side of the parking lot, nicely landscaped and with a large bar and dining room. But it still opens at 6:30 every morning for house-made tortillas and eggs, and lots of good things to go with them. The breakfast sandwiches are taquitos rather than tacos. That is to say, they’re rolled rather than folded, and presented in large flour tortillas. They’re not the smaller the cigar-sized fried items that always make us think of appetizer platters. Besides the usual breakfast fillings --chorizo and eggs, American sausage, bacon, potatoes -- Aparicio’s also offers any of their guisados, or fillings, from elsewhere on the menu, and these range from the simple, like chicken or refried beans, to beef in a green sauce or carne asado.
And of course, there are migas, eggs scrambled with crunchy-chewy bits of tortillas, or lots of other tasty possibilities. Everything we’ve tried at breakfast is excellent, like a recent meal of eggs scrambled with chorizo, the Mexican sausage, which wasn’t dripping with grease. We also had taquitos filled with cabrito. Cabrito is goat, and if you like lamb, you’ll like goat. Aparicio’s shreds the meat after it’s cooked Monterrey-style. The spicing is assertive, pretty hot although short of explosive. It’s a blissful choice at any time of day.
Perhaps the most remarkable dish is the fried potatoes that accompany breakfast. They’re fried with bacon. And we’re not talking a few fake bacon bits sprinkled here and there. This is high-quality, thick-sliced stuff, and it’s good enough that we forgive the absence of onions. It also makes them great in the tacos, especially with a little ranchero sauce or some pico de gallo. These are available as a taquito filling, too, and pretty tasty that way.
Coffee is good, and yes, if you’re in need of it, there’s menudo, the soup that’s a traditional hangover remedy, even if it is made with tripe. If you need more recommendations, you can ask the cops that are probably sitting at the next table near the windows overlooking a small garden and the DART, electric trains that stop a block away.
The menu is a lot larger than it once was, but we still prefer the more traditional items rather than some of the new, lighter ones. And there are some serious margaritas, too. Aparicio’s also sells tortillas, both flour (wheat) and corn, in packages to go (the original name was Aparico’s Plano Tortilla Factory) as well as fruit-filled empanadas and, during the holiday season with three days’ notice, several varieties of tamales.
Aparicio’s Restaurante Mexicano
1001 18th St., Plano, TX
Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner daily
Credit Cards: All major
Wheelchair access: Good