A little bit of this. A little bit of that.
The smell of freshly blended fruit, Tajín seasoning and freshly baked Latin American pastries captures you as soon as you walk into Bruno’s Fruteria, Dallas’ first Cuban, Mexican and Caribbean fusion fruteria.
Since opening September 2022, Bruno’s Fruteria has committed itself to giving customers a multicultural Latin experience, with its food, music and decor.
Owner Ernesto Velez, who also owns Casa Linda’s Havana Cafe, opened the fruteria for his son. He hopes this restaurant will teach 12-year-old Bruno how to run a business.
“It was his idea to do a fruteria,” Velez says.
Like Bruno, the menu is a fusion of cultures. Veldez was inspired by his son to mix the two cultures together as a concept for the restaurant.
“He is Cuban and his mom is Mexican,” Velez says. “Most of this business is Mexican. Mexicans have always started this concept, so we are trying to do something different, like a Cuban-Mexican mix.”
Although there’s a heavy Cuban-Mexican influence on the menu, it also includes a variety of food staples from Latin American cuisines, homemade artisan ice cream and boba. The Tropical Boba drink utilizes Caribbean fruits and flavors in the traditionally Taiwanese drink.
Whether he’s deciding which Mexican-Mayan masks are displayed on the walls or choosing menu items, Bruno is very involved in developing the concept. One of the menu items Bruno created is called “Bruno’s Nachos.”
“Bruno’s Nachos” includes ground beef cooked Cuban style, with nacho cheese, black beans, pico de gallo and jalapeños.
“He loves food just like me, his father,” Velez says.
Some of the crowd pleasers include the Cuban puff pastries with fruit filling, beef and cheese empanadas, homemade Mexican ice cream and the Chamoy Tajín Mango Smoothie — the perfect mix of sweet and spicy.
“People love it. Everyone loves it,” Velez says. “They like what they order and they come back. We already have customers that come by every day. The UPS guys come in every day during their shifts.”
Velez emphasized the importance of having such a culturally rich restaurant in Lake Highlands.
“This is a new thing for the community. There is no other Cuban-Caribbean-Mexican fusion fruteria like this in Dallas,” Velez says. “I want people to bring their kids after school to grab ice cream or boba. I want people to appreciate it and come enjoy it.”
Fruterias are a seasonal business, but Bruno’s Fruteria is open seven days a week, year-round. They get a spike in customers when the weather is warmer.
“Once we get into April, when the weather gets better, the business will pop out,” Velez says. “And I love that for us.”
Bruno’s Fruteria, 8510 Abrams Road, 469.601.4599