Restaurant talk: Gonzalez

Gonzalez Restaurant, on West Jefferson between Bishop and Madison, is not the most famous Tex-Mex restaurant in Oak Cliff. But it is a neighborhood institution all the same.

The restaurant, which has been there since 1973, is famous for its enormous flour tortillas. They’re almost the size of a Norma’s pancake, and they are delicious. But I have a love/hate relationship with them. That’s because they surely contain about 300 calories apiece, and they ensure that I cannot walk out of Gonzalez without feeling overfull. But dang, they are good.

Gonzalez is also known for its warm salsa, which is spicy and delicious. But did you know that they also serve two other kinds of salsa on request? There is a salsa verde, which I didn’t try because the waitress said it was “very spicy”, and a salsa fresca, which lives up to its name. It’s red salsa served cold, with bits of onion and jalapeño visible in the mix.

The entrees at Gonzalez are pretty standard. The enchiladas are not my favorite, but they are OK. I love the crispy tacos, which are made in house, and the shells are so light and crispy, it’s like they’re made of Munchos.

The atmosphere here is wonderful — old-school tejano and ’90s country music, piñatas hanging from the ceiling, a neon beer sign from the ’94 World Cup. The servers are friendly, and the prices are reasonable. Try the lunch menu, which has about a dozen selections for under $5.

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