Category Archives: Food & Entertainment

Longhorn Cattle Company Is Back

Plates of hot meats and tasty sides are heaping and ready for Longhorn customers.

It was a day before the Longhorn Cattle Company reopening and owner Bill Turner was raring to go. “The fires are lit and the beans are cooking,” said Turner on June 2, the eve of his barbecue restaurant reopening after weeks of COVID-19 closure.  The San Benito mainstay business along the expressway is a destination restaurant in the Rio Grande Valley. The days of closure were long ones for a…

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Valley Businesses Regroup, Adjust To Life

Dien Nguyen says business is returning to his nail salon in San Juan. (VBR)

Adam Shidler stayed busy in the two weeks his Weslaco business was closed. Government-mandated shutdowns due to COVID-19 kept his downtown coffee shop temporarily shuttered. Shidler used the time to do maintenance and upkeep at Weslaco’s Daily Grind. Working in his shop, customers would see him inside and knock on windows and wave hellos. Weslaco’s Daily Grind’s customers missed their coffee shop – and the feelings were mutual.  “Our friends…

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Moonshiner Bring Slice Of Ozarks

Jerrod Leon Henry stands by his copper still in Los Fresnos.

Tape holds up a distiller’s and rectifier’s permit from the state to the front window of Jerrod Leon Henry’s emerging business. A gold 120-gallon copper still made in Tennessee sits inside of what will become the Rio Grande Distillery and Magic Valley Moonshine. It’s on Highway 100 on the outskirts of Los Fresnos. Traffic buzzes by on the way to Port Isabel and South Padre Island. Henry is bringing a…

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Linda’s Cakes Transforms to Serve Community

Andrea Bernes of Linda’s Cakes & Desserts Speciality Shop helps a customer with a purchase of goods like beans and potatoes now being sold at the Brownsville bakery. (Courtesy)

For Andrea Bernes, it started with a question that would transform her bakery in the coronavirus era. “A customer asked me if I would sell her flour,” said Bernes, the owner of Linda’s Cakes & Desserts Specialty Shop. Bernes mulled that over. It was mid-March and long lines were forming at grocery stores as the COVID-19 crisis arrived in the Rio Grande Valley.  “Then one of my suppliers asked if…

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The Smoking Oak Keeps Flame Going

Brisket sandwich from The Smoking Oak.

Mario Dominguez is a believer in the Central Texas style – and oak is the key. He starts the flame every Tuesday night at his hometown barbecue restaurant in Mercedes. It will then burn steady and sure for the next five days at The Smoking Oak. The line of customers starts forming before the noon hour at the BBQ restaurant on 546 Hidalgo Street. The oak burns slow, thus giving…

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Determination Tops Ranch House Burgers

Ranch House Burgers II in Mission. (Courtesy)

Ranch House Burgers II has new and temporary hours in the era of COVID-19. Every other day, the Mission restaurant is open from midnight to 3 a.m. Its customers are primarily police officers, state troopers and first responders. “They got tired of burritos from the convenience stores,” said Mike Barrera, the restaurant’s owner. “We’re a business, so we do charge for the meals to help keep my staff employed, but it’s…

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Fazoli’s Donates Free Meals to Pharr Families

Mayor Ambrosio Hernandez, the Pharr City Commission and PSJA ISD Culinary Arts program students accept a donation from Fazoli's during their Grand Opening celebration in Pharr in 2017.

The City of Pharr, Fazoli’s and local school districts are working together to help feed Pharr families in need. “Plans are underway to provide free meals to our families most in need on a weekly basis,” said Mayor Ambrosio Hernandez. “I wholeheartedly want to thank Jerry Maddox, Fazoli’s owner, for opening his doors and being so generous during these uncertain times. This is certainly a difficult time for many families…

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“Member Bingo” Supports Edinburg Restaurants

Member Bingo

The Edinburg Chamber of Commerce is encouraging social distancing in a creative way by launching its Member Bingo. The bingo-style game encourages citizens to patronize participating restaurants, as local businesses take a hit from COVID-19. Each square on the bingo card features a different Edinburg Chamber member. Players must order to-go from any of these members, spend a minimum of $10 and save their receipts. Once the “BINGO” is complete,…

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50-Cent Wings Now at Wing Barn

Wing Barn's offers chicken wings coated with one of 18 sauces created by the owners. (VBR)

The Local Rio Grande Valley’s own Wing Barn restaurant is now offering all wings for 50 cents each until things are back to ‘normal’. This includes both bone-in and boneless. The local family restaurant most recently received accolades from Big 7 Travel one of the “Top 25 Best Places for Chicken Wings in Texas” and is also featured in the April 2020 edition of VBR. “We know things are changing and…

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Wing Barn Gains Recognition Amid Growth

Bobby Saenz and Daniel Pompa are the owners of the fast-growing Wing Barn restaurants in the Valley.

Down-home Rio Grande Valley cooking is gaining statewide accolades for the Brownsville-based Wing Barn. The growing regional restaurant chain was recently named one of the “Top 25 Best Places for Chicken Wings in Texas” by Big 7 Travel. The widely-read and well-sourced social media site offers recommendations on the best destinations, hotels and restaurants around the country and world for travelers to visit and enjoy. The accolade comes at a…

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