Mansfield’s Backyard Restaurants Offer Delicious Foods With Patio Fun

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Backyard patio in Mansfield
Photo by Chris Waits

Along with photographer Chris Waits, I recently toured Mansfield’s bustling Backyard entertainment district to visit three restaurants. Twisted Root Burger Company, Taqueria La Ventana, and Del Toro Que & Brew share outdoor patio seating and space, including an enclosed Cupola for their diners.

Our first Backyard stop was Twisted Root Burger Co., where they proudly serve top-quality craft burgers in a “come as you are” environment. Chefs Jason Boso and Quincy Hart founded Twisted Root in 2006 in Deep Ellum, where it’s still going strong. After Twisted Root appeared in Guy Fieri’s Diners, Drive-Ins, and Dives TV show in 2009, the unassuming “Burgers Your Way” joint became a bona fide “Dallas Dining Destination.”

Twisted Root burgers
Twisted Root burgers photo by Chris Waits

Twisted Root lets customers create their own burgers while offering their own unique twists to fantastical burgers like the Millionaire ($16.50). This amazing concoction is a Knife and Fork Burger that features Wagyu Beef, aged Cheddar cheese, Truffle Aioli, garlic mushrooms, bacon, piles of onion strings, lettuce, and tomatoes. My favorite was the spicy and delicious Gosh Jam It! ($10.75), a burger with goat cheese, tomato bacon, Habanero jam, and Chipotle sauce. In June, Twisted Root is unveiling a new Sweet & Spicy Burger, topped with thyme caramelized onions, cheddar cheese, pepper jack cheese, diced red onion, and topped with a drizzle of honey-chipotle sauce.

Twisted Root executives
Chef Quincy, Nick Bradshaw and Michael Brennan at Twisted Root, photo by Chris Waits

Twisted Root Chef Quincy

It was a delightful surprise to spot a familiar face, Twisted Root’s co-founder and owner, Chef Quincy, at the Mansfield location. In the spring of 2017, I became a fan of Chef Quincy’s culinary skills and his warm personality at the opening of Quincy’s Chicken Shack. That restaurant, which shared a large backyard with the Coppell Twisted Root, has since closed. Chef Quincy has stayed busy, though, with the continued growth of Twisted Root, celebrating its 18th anniversary this month with 13 locations in Texas.

Twisted Root pickle barrels
Photo by Chris Waits

Chef Quincy is famous for his pickles, which he makes using his grandmother’s recipe. Fried pickles are featured prominently on Twisted Root’s menu. A Fried Ride platter ($9) features hand-punched fries, onion strings, Quincy’s fried pickles, green beans, and carrots with two dipping sauces: Chipotle Ranch and Peppercorn Ranch.

Taqueria La Ventana a Backyard Staple

Taqueria La Ventana
Photo by Chris Waits

Our next stop was Taqueria La Ventana, where we were treated to a savory array of Mexican City street food. My favorite dish was their flavorful Elotes ($6.75 for a large bowl). Various street tacos, Burritos, and a frosty Margarita were also offered. We tried an icy cold bottle of Mexican Coca-Cola ($3.25) made with real cane sugar for the coup de resistance. Good to the last drop!

Del Toro plates offered by Atanacia Blancas
Atanacia Blancas photo by Chris Waits

Atanacia Blancas, President of Taqueria La Ventana and Del Toro Craft Que & Brew for three years, joined us to visit Del Toro. We also visited the adjoining By the Horns Brewery, a local craft brewery helmed by Brewmaster Nathan Crawford. Their best-selling brews are Ranch Hand Blonde and Te Amo Mexican Lager ($6.50 each). Along with the craft brews, a full bar is also featured at Del Toro.

By the Horns brewmaster
By the Horns Brewmaster Crawford photo by Chris Waits

Del Toro Craft Que & Brew

Craft BBQ, we’re told, happens when meats are slow-smoked for hours. Their side dishes are all made by hand and in-house, including veggies and breads. Del Toro opened in Mansfield in Feb. 2022 and features prime brisket, ribs, pulled pork, turkey, jalapeno-cheddar sausage, and (on occasion) even smoked quail. We tried a sampling of their meats, along with sides of creamy mac and cheese and Elotes (street corn).

There’s a definite Tex-Mex slant to Del Toro’s menu since Chef Nico Sanchez hails from Guanajuato, Mexico. Sanchez said he wanted a restaurant that combined craft BBQ with Mexican flair, or “Mex-Que.” My favorite Del Toro dish, the Birria tacos ($14), was served hot with an onion Consome. Another favorite was the Texas Twinkie (bacon-wrapped jalapeno stuffed with cream cheese and chopped brisket) ($9).

Del Toro Smashburger
Del Toro Smashburger photo by Chris Waits

The high-stacked Smash Burger with bacon and gooey melted cheese was an awe-inspiring sculpture, probably not meant for vegans or the faint of heart.

These Backyard restaurants (plus a bonus brewery!) are located at 109 South Main Street in Mansfield. Several of them feature weekend brunches and offer musical entertainment on special occasions. Any of these three restaurants offer a festive place for your dad to celebrate Father’s Day on June 16. Plus, all three feature delicious food and beverages any day of the week!

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Jo Ann Holt
Jo Ann Holt is an award-winning journalist with 40+ years of experience as a writer and editor. She loves live performances, from country music concerts to Broadway musicals to community theatre productions. Holt also enjoys art and cultural festivals, and good food and wine. She’s toured Amsterdam, London, Puerto Rico, the Bahamas, and various cities in Mexico but looks forward to visiting even more countries. She has traveled by boat, plane, and train, but especially likes taking long road trips across the U.S. with her husband, retired history professor Durhl Caussey. They enjoy meeting friendly people, learning about different cultures, and visiting historic sites wherever they go.

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