El Padrino, the Last Taco Stand in Bishop Arts, is Closing November 1

The last taco stand in Bishop Arts (photo by Carol Shih)

The recent happy news concerning two restaurants moving in to Oak Cliff is still a painful reminder that El Padrino is closing on November 1.

When Lombardi Family Concepts signed the lease for the old Oak Cliff Mercantile building, this lease also included its takeover of the small taco kiosk known as El Padrino. Both Rob (Go Oak Cliff) and Bradford Pearson (Oak Cliff People) reported yesterday that these two new restaurants – the OC Mercantile and Dog House (hot dogs and frozen custard) – are moving into the old OC Mercantile space. A PR spokeswoman for the Lombardi group still doesn’t know what’s going to happen to the taco stand, but hopefully this means the Lombardis aren’t going to bulldoze the little kiosk. That would be sad.

Jump if you like jumping.

Last month or so, my fellow El Padrino fan, Andrew Plock, and I said goodbye to El Padrino by consuming a few final breakfast tacos. We both agreed it wasn’t the tacos that we’d miss, but the El Padrino ladies who’ve served tacos in that Oak Cliff spot for years.

Starting Nov 1, El Padrino will be no more. When I last spoke to the taco stand’s manager, Juan Contreras, he was hopeful about staying in Oak Cliff. “We hope to stay in the Bishop Arts; we were one of the original establishments before Bishop Arts became what it is now, and we’d like to be part of it as long as we can.”

*Yes, yes, I know that El Si Hay is right across the street, but I don’t consider it part of Bishop Arts. Feel free to present your arguments in the comments section.

Tacos from El Padrino







  • Tomas

    Let’s not get all nostalgic. El Padrino is not closing just because mean developers are coming in to gentrify everything. A good reason why it’s closing is that it is not a very good place to eat. I live in 75208 and really want to like this place. I tried it several times. Yes, the ladies are nice, but the food was mediocre at best. If El Si Hay had this space, the nonstop lines would have ensured it would be around for a good long while. With so many great places to get tacos in Oak Cliff, this really isn’t a loss. If they bring in good hot dogs, it’ll be a gain.

  • OakCliffDweller

    Actually Thomas, I beg to differ, no establishment would last that long if the food was mediocre. Might not have the best Tacos, however I’ve tried numerous Taco establishments, including El Si Hay, everyone has their good items/bad items. I love El Si Hay’s elotes though, I mean that’s why most of the folks go there, well from what I observe when I go. But, based on other online blogs/sites, their lease did not get renewed and their landlord leased out the stucco building in addition to the Mercantile to make room for a Lombardi concept.

  • Cynthia

    Might I recommend the chorizo and egg breakfast tacos we’ve been getting for so many years? I’m heartbroken they will no longer be down the street and I will miss greatly the sweet ladies of El Padrino #2. It’s a sad day for the Bishop Arts District.