This is a post by N&O restaurant critic Greg Cox:
Jibarra, which became a leader in the revitalization of the Warehouse District when it relocated there from North Raleigh in 2008, will serve its last meal on Sunday. The upscale Mexican restaurant and tequila bar has been the flagship in the Ibarra family-owned collection that has included numerous Tex-Mex eateries over the past 20 years, among them El Rodeo and La Rancherita locations.
“We wanted to finish out this week’s Downtown Raleigh Restaurant Week,” says Charlie Ibarra, “as a sort of last hurrah.”
But the Ibarras are already hard at work on a new concept. After closing for a couple of weeks for a quick dining room makeover, they expect to open Jose and Sons (327 W. Davie St.; 919-755-0556; joseandsons.com) as early as September 2.
Taking its cue from the restaurant’s name, the menu will combine two generations of the family’s culinary experience: the traditional Mexican fare of family patriarch Jose Ibarra, and a contemporary fusion that sons Charlie, Hector and Joel are calling “a celebration of our Mexican-Southern upbringing.”
On the plate, “Mexican-Southern” translates to dishes such as chicharrones and waffles, and shrimp and masa “grits” with Chihuahua cheese. You can expect to see Southern staples such as okra and collard greens done in new ways, too. An emphasis on local sourcing means that even the chiles rellenos on the traditional side of the menu may not always be made with the standard poblanos.
No word yet on whether the bartender is working on a recipe for a tequila julep.
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