First restaurant: Uptown Dallas, 1999

Total restaurants: 11

In our neighborhood: NorthPark Center, Northwest Highway and 75; Northwest Highway and Preston

Company philosophy: It started as a taco bar with a Southwestern flair and later developed its popular cheeseburger tacos and other signature tacos based on guests’ suggestions — “here’s what I like, here’s what my mom used to make, or here’s this crazy idea I have, and we’d be like, OK, let’s do it,” president and owner Mike Rangel says.

Expansion plans: Rangel likes highly dense traffic patterns during the day and “a lot of rooftops around at night.” The company also likes to be close to hospital districts to attract “patients going there, people who work there, and pharmaceutical reps.” Also, because Tin Star is popular with the 25-45 crowd, “apartment complexes and condos are good,” Rangel says. The company is looking to open six new locations in 2011, including Denton, Fort Worth, Arlington and somewhere around Northwest Highway and Greenville. “I think we’d do really well over there, and we’d be excited about finding a location,” Rangel says, noting the close vicinity of Presbyterian Hospital and surrounding medical offices. Plus, Rangel says, “Dallas is our home. We would love to have more stores in Dallas.”

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