An El Paso Tradition: Chico’s Tacos Celebrates Its 70th Birthday
Core Memory: My son was just born and only a few months old when he went to Chico’s Tacos for the first time ever with me and his great-grandma.
My grandma would help me watch my son while I went to my classes at UTEP. One afternoon she decided to join me for an afternoon lunch break and the place we chose was Chico’s Tacos on Chelsea. My son chilled in his baby carrier while me and my grandma enjoyed those famous rolled tacos.
That location isn’t there anymore, but whenever I drive past it I smile and remember that random afternoon lunch with my grandma at Chico’s Tacos. It’s just one of those random memories that will live in your mind forever.
Love it or hate it, Chico’s Tacos is an El Paso staple and I know I’m not alone when it comes to memories we have of the iconic El Paso restaurant that has been around for 70 years!
Chico’s Tacos has gained national attention for their famous take on rolled tacos and the locally owned restaurant just celebrated their 70th birthday in true El Paso style!
A post was shared on the restaurant's Instagram which showed guests at a local Chico’s Tacos location enjoying some birthday cake while being serenaded by Mariachi music.
“Happy birthday to us! & Happy 4th to everyone! Gracias por el amor y el apoyo cada año!”
If you’re not familiar with Chico’s Tacos, WHO ARE YOU?! Just joking, kind of. Chico's Tacos has been an El Paso tradition since 1953.
It was founded on July 4, 1953 by local boxing promoter Joe Mora and his wife Emma. The original location opened as a stand with a walk-up window.
Many would say that it is perhaps the city's best-known restaurant. (And anyone who says otherwise can fight me!)
Their take on rolled tacos, smothered in cheese and their special tomato sauce is what made people love the local spot so much.
These days, you’ll get mixed reactions when someone mentions Chico’s Tacos because in the past 70 years, a few things have changed. Specifically the cheese. But one thing that will never change is the fact that Chico’s Tacos still only accepts cash.
Chico’s Tacos has been featured in many Food Network TV shows and they were recently included in the Texas Bucket List of the ten popular Texas Destinations.
Most recently, Actor Mario Lopez threw some shade at Chico’s Tacos with a meme that read:
“El Paso: other Texas cities only have sh***y Tex-Mex, they don’t have real Mexican food like us
Also El Paso: (Insert Photo of an order of Chico’s Tacos)"
I was always a Zack Morris fan anyways. I’m just embarrassed that I share my last name with Mario after that tweet!
Regardless of the hate that Chico’s Tacos may get from people, the restaurant has survived 70 years in the borderland and honestly, that says a lot about a small business that started off as a small stand with a walk-up window.
Chico’s Tacos famous tacos have even been replicated by many local restaurants and even Austin, Texas has a spot where people can get their Chico’s Tacos fix!
So, don’t listen to the haters, Chico! Imitation is the sincerest form of flattery!
Congratulations on 70 years and Happy Birthday! (But on a serious note can you at least start accepting Apple Pay? (Asking for a friend who hates carrying cash.)
Court Del Norte Motel