Revolver Taco’s Rojas Returning to Fort Worth, With a Restaurant Planned for Sundance Square
See full Fort Worth Magazine article by Scott Nishimura here.
Texas Monthly pegged it in December, when it wrote this headline about the Dallas restaurateur Regino Rojas, who opened the Revolver Taco Lounge in Fort Worth in 2012 before moving it to Dallas: “Dallas’ Regino ‘Gino’ Rojas stands out in Texas for his wildly creative food and his willingness to take risks (who says you can’t open a new restaurant concept during a pandemic?).”
The ‘new’ restaurant the magazine was referring to was La Resistencia — a prix-fixe $65 taco tasting menu fusing Mexican cooking and Japanese yakitori grilling that Rojas, who grew up in Mexico, began offering to very limited seating inside his Dallas restaurant last year.
Rojas is at it again, letting word out this week that he’s negotiating to take over the former Taco Diner space at downtown Fort Worth’s Sundance Square. His plans, he said in an email to Fort Worth Inc.: a combo Revolver Taco Lounge and Purepecha, a reservations-only chef tasting menu that he had also opened in the back of his Dallas restaurant, but discontinued — at least temporarily — during the pandemic.
“We are planning to open an outpost of Revolver Taco Lounge and Purepecha,” Rojas, who asked to be interviewed by email, said in response to questions from the magazine. “I am hoping to open early summer.”
Rojas, who said Sundance owners Ed and Sasha Bass have been his catering clients since he came to Fort Worth, promised a distinctive experience.
“Not looking to create a cold chain! Or another soulless corporation!” Rojas, a former James Beard Award semifinalist, said. “When I was offered the (Sundance) space to change it and bring my culture and my traditions to a beautiful stage like Sundance Square, I take the challenge!”
Rojas and Sundance are in final negotiations on a lease, Bryan Eppstein, a spokesman for Sundance Square said. “Commitments have been made, and they’re finalizing the lease right now,” he said.
Signing Rojas is the culmination of a lengthy conversation, Eppstein said. “They’ve had an ongoing conversation. It’s been a synergistic opportunity. The space opens up. They’re friends.”
The space has one of several patios that abut Sundance Plaza, which is owned by Sundance Square and has been closed during the pandemic.
“We will be using part of the plaza for a well distanced outdoor seating (not sure of the capacity yet),” Rojas said.
His Fort Worth version of Purepecha will seat about 10 – 15 people, and follow the reservation-only model, Rojas said.
Rojas said he will reconfigure the restaurant space to follow COVID-19 regulations and safety recommendations.
Revolver Taco Lounge's first location, West 7th Street in Fort Worth
Rojas started Revolver on West 7th Street in Fort Worth in 2012, before moving to Forest Park Boulevard on the South Side, and then to Dallas.
“The Sundance Square location will be a reflection of a more mature business,” Rojas, asked the difference between then and now, said. “I have learned and gained experience that only walking the dark road will give you! When we open (our West 7th) location, it was just a place for me and mama to cook. I didn’t know ---- about this business. In 10 years, you learn many things!”
During the pandemic, Revolver has mostly served customers by takeout and delivery.
“Running a restaurant during this pandemic has given all of us a lesson!” Rojas said. “But for us the people in the kitchen, everything changed! The money is not coming in to feed those monster size restaurant/corporations. All those places with no soul and pride have abandoned the fight! But people like me, taqueros, family-owned eateries, the once forgotten, those like me are the ones still fighting! Because the love of serving a warm plate of food to the people is what moves us!!”
Location Mentioned: Sundance Square Plaza