Plano restaurant Love and War in Texas provides multisensory experience

Shrimp Texana.
Shrimp Texana ($18.99) features grilled Texas Gulf Coast shrimp tossed in a chipotle, lime and black pepper marinade. The dish is served with cilantro-lime rice and grilled vegetables. (Karen Chaney/Community Impact Newspaper)

Shrimp Texana ($18.99) features grilled Texas Gulf Coast shrimp tossed in a chipotle, lime and black pepper marinade. The dish is served with cilantro-lime rice and grilled vegetables. (Karen Chaney/Community Impact Newspaper)

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M.G. “Red” Byboth, owner of Love and War in Texas, said the eatery’s customers range from weekly regulars to tourists seeking a Texas experience. (Karen Chaney/Community Impact Newspaper)
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Baby Back Ribs ($22.99) include a full rack of slow-smoked baby back ribs with Shiner Bock barbecue sauce. It is served with cole slaw and french fries. (Karen Chaney/Community Impact Newspaper)
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The stage at Love and War in Texas features live performances multiple times per week. (Karen Chaney/Community Impact Newspaper)
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Waltz Across Texas ($18.99) is a sampling of appetizers from various regions of the Lone Star State, including wild boar quesadillas, smoked chicken flautas, fried green beans and Palo Duro popcorn. It is served with guacamole, smoky ranch and pico de gallo. (Karen Chaney/Community Impact Newspaper)
For 19 years, M.G. “Red” Byboth was a regular at Love and War in Texas. He was such a fan that he once told the former owner, Tye Phelps, that he would like to own one of the restaurants someday. Five years ago, Byboth’s dream became a reality.

“[Phelps] called me and said, ‘Hey, Red, I’m done. You always said you wanted one. If you want it, it’s yours,’” Byboth said.

The business had fallen on hard times, and Phelps was willing to give the restaurant to Byboth. If Byboth had not accepted the offer, Love and War in Texas would have permanently closed after 23 years in business.

“I felt like I was saving it,” Byboth said. “This place has gotten to be a Plano institution, and it’s a noted venue in the state.”

From the beginning, Love and War in Texas focused on its state heritage and its concept for homegrown singers and songwriters.


Texas artists perform on the outdoor stage multiple nights a week; different regions of Texas are represented on the menu; and antler chandeliers and cowhide-covered bar stools all combine to create a Lone Star State ambiance.

The Texas-themed recipes Phelps developed for the menu two decades ago are still featured on the menu today. Byboth said the restaurant’s beef items represent the panhandle; barbecue is for East Texas; seafood is from the Gulf Coast, Mexican food represents South Texas; and wild game is from the Hill Country. Love and War in Texas also carries state spirits, including multiple Shiner beer options and Texas wines. Soon the eatery will offer bourbon from state distilleries.

“We have a plate that has quail and venison sausage,” Byboth said. “[Customers] won’t get that anywhere else.”

Walking the floor and talking to guests is Byboth’s favorite thing about owning the business.

“I really enjoy it when they say the food is fabulous,” he said. “I’ll have a rotten day—trying to find enough money or whatever—and I come in here, and these people are happy and clapping. That’s pretty cool.”

Love and War in Texas

601 E. Plano Parkway, Plano

972-422-6201

www.loveandwarintexas.com

Hours: Mon.-Sun. 11 a.m.-midnight