Rusty Taco Out at Main Street Garden in Downtown Dallas

Last week it was announced Rusty Taco was taking over the Lily Pad space at Main Street Garden.  Moments ago, Robert Wilonsky reported the deal is dead. John Crawford, CEO of Downtown Dallas, has some splaining to do. It sounds like they caved in to DRG’s owner Mike Hoque, operator of Wild Salsa across the street. In Wilonsky’s story, Crawford says he has reevaluated the situation and has “decided to spread the wealth.” Maybe it will be a burger joint? No, Hoque’s got Chop House Burger. Steak Shack? Nope, Dallas Chop House is down the street. Hmm, too small for pizza. Do you live downtown? What would you like to see in the space?


  • Neal Z

    Really Rust’y is out ?? Great let DRG run another restaurant,so we can get bad service .What ashame

  • Kris

    This is too bad for people who live and/or work downtown (like me), but I think it’s the right decision. The city should not be handing out free rent to a direct competitor right next door to a restaurant paying thousands in rent each month, and Wild Salsa’s owner right to complain – I’d do the same if the city was taking an arbitrary action that directly harmed my business.

  • The Kid

    It sounds like Rusty wants to save the world from Fuzzy’s Tacos and Wild Salsa wants to save the world from Rusty’s Tacos. Taco wars?

  • Brian

    @kris I highly doubt the rent was free. It’s probably pretty cheap (relatively for downtown), but then again the space is pretty small. I don’t even view Rusty and Wild Salsa as competitors. Rusty is casual, cheap, simple food. Wild Salsa is a sit down place with decent food, but way overpriced. It’s says a lot Hoque was basically scared of having any competition in downtown, it is part of running a business, suck it up!

  • Kris

    Sorry, Brian but the deal for that space was free rent for two years – you can look at the RFP at … also, Wild Salsa is planning a casual, walk-up taco window, which is direct competition with Rusty. I’m not taking anyone’s side and would love to have had Rusty Taco as a nearby lunch option, but as a business owner, I can totally see Hoque’s point.

  • Brian

    Never saw the RFP, just had read a few articles, my bad. I’d be more sympathetic if the DRG’s restaurants had better food at more reasonable price point. Kicking out competition so you can price gouge customers will get no sympathy for me and will probably ensure I don’t at any of their restaurants

  • Steven

    big bummer! I was looking forward to some Rusty Tacos downtown. It’s crazy the decision was made public and then the deal was yanked. I’m sure Rusty has already invested in equipment, staff, etc. as this was set to open in less than two weeks.

  • MeanGreen

    Thank god, Rusty taco is awful. Now if they let the ladies at fuel city run it, different story….I still say they tear it down and have a food truck pull in parking space.

  • yuck

    totally agree with Mean Green, i was involved with groups the city pitched the location too in 09 and DD inc in 12, the space remains as completely inadequate as ever, free rent or not, it is absolutely nothing more than a concession stand, and must have been designed by an idiot. however it was made very clear the city would still prevent any food truck activity to supplement the “Cafe”, well good luck then, the best that space could contain is a coffee vendor or snow cone stand, anything else is a complete PIPEDREAM.