Las Braza’s and Its Bold Cuisine - The Bend Magazine

Las Braza’s and Its Bold Cuisine

Las Braza’s Cocina Bar and Grill dominates deliciously in this local Mexican cuisine kitchen.

A spread of food at Las Braza’s Cocina Bar and Grill in Corpus Christi, Texas.

Photos by Rachel Benavides

Newlyweds and business owners Franco and Sarah Longoria are no strangers to the long hours and demanding pace of the restaurant business. A Kingsville native, Sarah was just 16 years old when she entered her first retail kitchen, and worked herself up to partner at Taqueria Jalisco. “Food becomes your love language,” she said. Franco, an expert by anyone’s standards, was vice president for a successful restaurant chain with 17 locations. The two even met at a family-owned restaurant in Riviera, Texas, some 14 years ago. After decades of serving other restaurant concepts, “We decided to venture out and do our own thing,” the proprietors of Las Braza’s Cocina Bar Grill declared in unison. 

Las Braza’s Cocina Bar and Grill owners Sarah and Franco Longoria.
Las Braza’s Cocina Bar and Grill owners Sarah and Franco Longoria.

The Longorias invested their savings, time and passion into honoring their roots, creating a beautiful space and menu to celebrate the Mexican cuisine they love and reflect the unique community they are serving. “Your customers become your second family,” Sarah reflected. 

The couple spent months renovating the space next door to Gates Donuts. They took great care in refurbishing the floor-to-ceiling copper range, an original feature to the 1950s building. It’s this centerpiece grill that gives Las Braza’s — “The Embers” — its name. The impressive grill not only makes a visual statement in the posh venue, but sets the concept apart from the competition. Patrons can ooh and ahh as their fajitas, salmon or steaks are deftly prepared right in front of their eyes.

A spread of food at Las Braza’s Cocina Bar and Grill in Corpus Christi, Texas.

Word is spreading about the delicious food and welcoming atmosphere at Las Braza’s — “We have a lot of support from the community,” said Franco — and the party room in particular has become a popular spot to celebrate. Accommodating 25-30 customers in a private area with a festive vibe, party goers can enjoy the restaurant’s celebrated street tacos, mollejas or tripas. The Longorias seamlessly marry new favorites and classic go-to dishes on their menu to appeal to a wide array of customers. 

It’s the bold flavors of the food, the perfect seasonings in the parrilla and the sweet, smoky char of the grill that have customers coming back. The care, thought and execution put into each experience by the owners have patrons bringing friends and telling neighbors. 

Contact: 4425 S. Alameda St.   |

Hungry for more local cuisine? Check out our Digital Dining Guide or read about a new oyster bar from the minds of the landmark restaurant Snoopy’s.