Elegant Café Central first opened its doors in 1918 in the town of Juarez, just over the border in Mexico. After a series of transformations and relocations, it settled on El Paso’s Oregon Street and has since become known as one of the best upmarket options in town. The perfect spot for a late-night drink, it has an outdoor terrace, an amply stocked bar and a carefully considered wine list which has won the restaurant numerous awards. The menu is equally inviting with stand-out dishes that include cream of green chile soup and roasted rack of Colorado lamb. Both cultured and refined, it hosts live jazz on Thursday, Friday and Saturday evenings between 6.30 and 10pm.
Café Central, 109 N Oregon St, El Paso, TX, USA, +1 915 545 2233
If you’re tired of Tex Mex, the Greek cuisine at Zino’s is a breath of fresh air. One of El Paso’s best-loved restaurants, it’s known for vibrant salads dressed with herby olive oil and salty feta, warming lentil soups and gyros made with fresh pita. There are crisp falafels too, along with delicious dips and appetisers, from hummus to baba ganoush and stuffed vine leaves to calamari. With sticky baklava for dessert, you can tour the Peloponnese in a single sitting just as chef Zino Souikni intended. An excellent introduction to the food culture of Greece, Zino’s looks set to be an El Paso favourite for many years to come.
Zino’s Greek & Mediterranean, 7040 N Mesa St, El Paso, TX, USA, +1 915 584 8166
Despite it’s less-than-salubrious shopping centre location, Ripe Eatery is a firm El Paso favourite on account of its enticing comfort food and full calendar of live music events. The weekend brunch menu is a particular highlight and offers everything from blueberry and ricotta pancakes to omelettes and French toast. There are also several variations on classic Eggs Benedict, including the Mexican-inspired Huevos Rancheros Benny, which comes with bacon, chipotle and tomatillo salsa, black beans and chorizo hollandaise – definitely a substitute for both breakfast and lunch. Ripe also hosts a number of themed nights including a popular happy hour between 3 and 6 p.m. on Mondays.
Ripe Eatery, 910 E Redd Rd, El Paso, TX, USA, +1 915 584 7473