New restaurant Desert Racer in Dallas is opening soon, but not on April 11, 2019.

New restaurant Desert Racer in Dallas is opening soon, but not on April 11, 2019.

Tom Fox/Staff Photographer

In a story written in late 2018 called "The most exciting new restaurants opening in Dallas-Fort Worth in 2019," it was a surprising and fun twist to see a very specific opening date for Nick Badovinus' restaurant Desert Racer: April 11, 2019.

He picked that date because he began driving across the desert on April 11, 1996, on his way to Dallas, where he's been rooted in restaurants ever since. Badovinus set his sights on opening Desert Racer on April 11, 2019 to commemorate his trek 23 years back.

So, is today the day? Not quite. "Soon," though, the operator says.

The most exciting restaurants opening in Dallas-Fort Worth in 2019

"We've just got a couple of things we need to finish up," Badovinus says, noting that bar and kitchen equipment are being delivered and that the restaurant is now "entering the accessorization phase," where Badovinus and his team are hanging sun sails and finishing smaller details.

Badovinus also operates Off-Site Kitchen in West Dallas, Town Hearth in the Design District; Montlake Cut in Preston Center; Perfect Union Pizza Co. in Highland Park Village; and Neighborhood Services restaurants in several cities.

Restaurants often run behind schedule. Here's but one example: Matt McCallister's hotly anticipated restaurant just opened reservations after ambitions of being open more than six weeks earlier.

Desert Racer will be a Southwestern restaurant and indoor-outdoor bar located near Lower Greenville. The place is 8,000 square feet inside and 8,000 square feet outside, and Badovinus says they plan to have bar games and room for large groups.

"It's fun," he says of this final phase. "The way the place is coming together is quite satisfying."

Desert Racer is expected to open in spring 2019 at 1520 Greenville Ave., Dallas. Hat tip to a Dallas Morning News reader for asking after Desert Racer's previously-reported opening date.

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