Tony’s Café

Tony and Lina Richa opened Tonyu2019s Cafe in 1989 and are known for their Mediterranean recipes.

Tony and Lina Richa opened Tonyu2019s Cafe in 1989 and are known for their Mediterranean recipes.

When Tony and Lina Richa opened Tony’s Café  26 years ago, they said they were looking for a way to establish roots in Plano while raising a family. Lina was pregnant with their daughter, Petra, when they opened the restaurant.

Today the couple is preparing for Petra’s marriage with help from their customers, and the Richas said they have enjoyed sharing the milestone with such loyal patrons.

“I love what we do,” Lina said. “It’s [about] the people and the energy that flows here, and I feel it in my heart. This restaurant gives us identity.”

The Richas opened Tony’s Café shortly after moving to Plano from Lebanon in the late 1980s. The cafe is known for its wide variety and Mediterranean flair of food made with fresh herbs from the Richas’ garden. From moussaka and kabobs to American classics and more than a dozen types of omelets, Tony’s Café aims to satisfy many cravings. Breakfast is also served all day, as is lunch for those who like their midday meal a little early, Tony said.

“You won’t believe how many people come [here] at 6 a.m. and want chicken kebabs or chicken Parmesan,” he said. “And we serve breakfast all day, and sometimes it is served more at lunchtime. You can have anything on the menu any time of the day.”

The cafe is known for Tony’s homemade baklava and cinnamon rolls. Tony, who has been in the food industry for roughly 35 years, said he worked in many different  restaurants and combined his experiences to create a place that marries living-room comfort with quality meals and friendly service.

Everything on the menu is his special recipe, and no two dishes are alike, he said.

But there is more to Tony’s Café than just the food, Lina said. She said she makes it a point to welcome each customer personally when he or she walks in, eager to make them feel welcome. The Richas said they credit their homeland and its vibrant culture for their emphasis on hospitality. The varied menu alone is a testament to Lebanese cuisine, Tony said.

“Since Lebanon is on the Mediterranean [Sea], it is influenced by a lot of European culture,” he said. “Lebanon is a melting pot like the United States.”

Conversations abound among patrons and wait staff, and occasionally Tony makes it a point to emerge from the kitchen and greet people throughout the day as well. The Richas said they like to stay informed on current events, as conversations with customers vary from sports to local happenings to politics.

“After 9/11, people started coming to us more [wanting to talk] because a lot of people don’t know about other parts of the world,” Tony said. “[Good conversation] is very important; it’s fun when people come to you and ask for your opinion.”

Lina said service has been her calling, made evident in her ability to remember not only her customers’ names but also their favorite dishes. The way they make customers feel by the end of their meal makes the Richas passionate about their service, she said.

“We are always thankful to the people of Plano who have supported us and have believed in us all these years,” Lina said. “This is not an act; this is who we are. We mean well, and it travels.”


Patients need blood every two seconds somewhere in the U.S., Hale said, and Type O is the most in-demand, according to the American Red Cross. (Courtesy Sanford Myers and American Red Cross)
American Red Cross sees urgent need for blood donations

The American Red Cross urgently needs blood donors of all types, according to Jan Hale with the organization's biomedical services department.

The calendar approved at the Feb. 25 board meeting will follow similar patterns as the year before. (Liesbeth Powers/Community Impact Newspaper)
Collin College approves 2020-21 academic calendar

Collin College approved its 2020-21 academic calendar Feb. 25 at a board meeting.

SoiBrow Threading Salon opened in late December. (Courtesy SoiBrow Threading Salon)
SoiBrow Threading Salon opens in Plano

SoiBrow Threading Salon opened in late December at 5930 W. Park Blvd., Ste. 1100A, Plano.

The Campus at Legacy West is an effort to redevelop the grassy slopes of the office campus formerly owned by J.C. Penney into a mixed-use development. (Daniel Houston/Community Impact Newspaper)
Decision delayed until mid-March on Plano apartments at former J.C. Penney-owned office campus

The developer behind an effort to redevelop the Plano office campus formerly owned by J.C. Penney has asked for more time to refine its request for hundreds of new apartment units on the property.

Plano Mayor Harry LaRosiliere (right) presents former Mayor Jonas Alton Allman with a key to the city in 2014. The city reported Feb. 24, 2020, that Allman had died. (Courtesy city of Plano)
Former Plano Mayor Jonas Alton Allman dies, city says

The city of Plano will fly a flag at half mast Feb. 24 at the Plano Municipal Center to honor Allman, city spokesperson Steve Stoler said.

Fleet Feet expects to open in April in Plano. (Courtesy Fleet Feet)
Fleet Feet expects to open in Plano this spring

Fleet Feet expects to open in April at 2100 Preston Road, Ste. 604, Plano.

Victory Lane Quick Oil Change opened in October under the ownership of Jim Oberhofer. (Liesbeth Powers/Community Impact Newspaper)
Drag racing crew chief returns to Plano with Victory Lane Quick Oil Change

Victory Lane Quick Oil Change opened in October under the ownership of Jim Oberhofer, crew chief and vice president of operations for Kalitta Motorsports, a champion drag racing team.

Eastside Dojo officially opened in its new space Jan. 25. (Courtesy Eastside Dojo)
Eastside Dojo relocates in Plano

Eastside Dojo officially opened in its new space Jan. 25 at 2655 Premier Drive, Plano.

SizzleIt opened Dec. 7 in Plano. (Courtesy SizzleIt)
Plano's SizzleIt offers unique Asian-American foods

SizzleIt opened Dec. 7 at 1820 Coit Road, Ste. 138, Plano.

A camp hosted by Outcry Theatre is one of dozens of spring and summer camps offered in Plano this year. (Courtesy Outcry Theatre)
31 activities for kids: A list of spring and summer camps in Plano

A noncomprehensive list of spring and summer camps for children in Plano.

Eliseo Figueroa opened Lima Taverna in 2017 across from the former Macy’s location at Collin Creek Mall in Plano. (Daniel Houston/Community Impact Newspaper)
Owner of Plano's Lima Taverna restaurant shares love for Peruvian cuisine, culture

The restaurant serves dishes ranging from marinated fish served with Peruvian sides to a stir-fry made with beef tenderloin.

Level III ballet students take part in stretches during class. Before reaching Level IV, students must master technical skills and prove their physical and mental focus, according to the academy's syllabus. (Liesbeth Powers/Community Impact Newspaper)
'The art of ballet': Couple runs Plano studio with focus on performance

Hathaway Academy of Ballet is all about the fundamentals and principles of ballet technique, according to Kirt Hathaway, who runs the studio with his wife, Linda.

Back to top