In the Beginning
Joe T. Garcia’s Mexican Restaurant was established on July 4, 1935 by Mr. and Mrs. Joe T. Garcia. With a seating capacity of only sixteen, Joe, his wife Jessie, and their five children ran their tiny business with love and determination. Their business was destined for greatness due to Joe’s stellar personality, and of course, the mouth-watering recipes. (Jessie was affectionately known as Mamasuez to all who knew her.) Customers would wait for hours just to try Mamasuez’s famous enchiladas and her handmade tortillas. Joe was friends with all of his customers, and their affections for the family was shown through their patronage. Joe wasn’t interested in traditional advertising. He believed that the best advertising was by word of mouth. The restaurant’s reputation began to grow, and so did the lines of hungry customers. At Joe’s untimely death in 1953, his wife and youngest daughter, Hope, took over the reins.
Spreading the Love
By the 1970’s Joe T. Garcia’s was one of the most popular restaurants in the Dallas-Fort Worth area. With their loyal customers, the restaurant began to grow not only in popularity, but in size. First, a small patio with a pool and cabana was added. Then, every year until present a new patio, party room, or dining area was developed. The seating capacity grew from the original sixteen to well over 1000 today. Even though the restaurant continues to grow, the same style of cooking and original recipes are used, and the same determination and love for the business that was instilled by parents and grandparents is evident in the younger generation.
As Hope’s seven children began to grow up, new ideas and jobs were created for family members. A small bakery and cafe was added across the street from Joe T’s. Opened in 1981, a new location, Esperanza’s Bakery and Cafe, was named after Hope. This small neighborhood cafe was totally different from the original restaurant, with a varied menu serving breakfast and lunch.