The same family behind La Popular Tamale House is bringing creative Mexican dishes to East Dallas with its new Peak and Elm Cocina y Bar. Father-and-son Jesse Moreno and Jesse Moreno Jr. have teamed up to bring contemporary, artistic food to New East Elm, where the owners of Peak and Elm have planted themselves at 132 North Peak Street.
“The building dates back to the 1900s. It’s part of the original trolley street car stop for Dallas. This line was part of the Junius Heights line,” said Jesse Jr. Inside the corner building are cute vintage items, like doorknobs glued to the bar (a perfect purse hanger) and antique suitcases, to give it that old-timey feel.
At a media dinner last week, Jesse Moreno explained that he wasn’t going to start us off with chips and salsa. He didn’t want to fill us up before our main course. Instead, he presented us with a light, clean vegetable medley of radishes, green peppers, and carrots to whet our appetites.
“Our focus is on Mexican food. We’re trying to go as far away from [Tex-Mex]. We hoped to create a dining experience where the locals, as well as the outsiders, can really experience traditional Mexican food,” said Jesse Moreno Jr.
What’s great about Peak and Elm’s dishes is that they aren’t oversized and heavy. You don’t feel like taking a nap after finishing a meal there. Most of the dishes, even the tacos tapatios, are well-proportioned and utilize fresh, local ingredients. The Morenos have partnered with Texas Honeybee Guild, MozzCo, Times Ten Cellars, Empire Bread Co., and several other places to bring the best flavors to the table.