At T.B.D. Kitchen in Castle Hills, candied skull illustrations cover the chalkboard walls as a mix of reggae and Latin pop music sets the mood for the restaurant.
Rather than focusing on a specific cuisine, T.B.D. Kitchen aims to incorporate influences from multiple Central and South American cultures—be it the playlists, food or drinks.
Shelby Gideon, the front-of-house manager, says the dishes are inspired from countries such as Argentina, Peru, Mexico and Cuba.
“I feel like Latin food is the comfort food of South Texas,” Gideon said. “I’m from Corpus [Christi], so I grew up on tacos and burritos.”
Though involved with the food menu, Gideon’s specialty is the bar. The bar primarily serves pisco, which is a brandy made in Peru and Chile, and tequila and rum cocktails, Gideon said. Some of the cocktails include a frozen margarita, a pisco-based Latin mule and a rum-based Old-Fashioned.
Francisco Medina, the back-of-house manager, said the restaurant will continue to update its weekly specials, such as the Wednesday burger offerings.
Some of the other specials offered at T.B.D. Kitchen throughout the week are margarita Mondays, taco Tuesdays and burger Wednesdays.
Residents of the area may know the owner, Sean Conner, for his work at Pie 314, which is adjacent to T.B.D. Kitchen, as well as Purple Tako in The Colony.
Overlooking Avon Lake and nestled in Castle Hills, T.B.D. Kitchen has regulars from the nearby neighborhoods, Gideon said.
“Everyone lives like five minutes from here. I have a lot of regulars that live here,” Gideon said.
Part of its involvement in that community includes some recent events, such as a spirit night for a local PTA, as well as a Cinco de Mayo celebration.
“We had a concert series this past weekend,” Gideon said. “They close off the streets and have parties for the neighborhood. … It’s cool to be included in those things. We just had Cinco de Mayo, which was insanity. I think I made a thousand margaritas.”