So Furr’s is abandoning cafeterias in favor of buffets. That’s another blow to what, in my memory, was Dallas’ dominant fast-food concept in 1960s and early ’70s, before there was a McDonald’s on every corner and when Tex-Mex was still considered somewhat exotic. (It must hurt the hairnet industry, too; every cafeteria worker had one.)
One of the draws of the original NorthPark in 1965 was a very upscale (lots of subdued lighting and dark wood paneling) cafeteria run by Marriott (which also operated a sit-down restaurant that later became the Kip’s Big Boy near the big fountain outside what is now Dillard’s). The NorthPark cafeteria eventually was taken over by Wyatt’s, which ruled the cafeteria scene. Every neighborhood had one.
My family was partial to the Wyatt’s at Preston Forest, and every time I hear the words "turkey tetrazzin," I think of Wyatt’s. And how did the cashiers always manage to wrap the receipt around your glass of iced tea? Wyatt’s, of course, was bought by Luby’s 13 years ago, and Luby’s has had its share of problems.
I’m not sure Highland Park every got over the closing of the original Highland Park Cafeteria on Cole, but it’s nice that it’s spinoff is still making a go of things at Casa Linda.