MERIDEN – At the new Tacos Mi Nacho, guests are greeted with Mexican music, an outdoor seating area, and light wood double doors leading to the restaurant.
Inside, patrons discover brightly colored walls, a large chandelier, and other colorful decorations, some of which come straight from Mexico.
Luis Lemus and Claudia Sánchez are the owners of Tacos Mi Nacho, 562 Broad St. Lemus, Sánchez and their daughters Sofia and Camila Lemus said they were happy to finally be in their new home.
“Now I can’t believe it,” Sánchez said with a laugh.
The family had rented the previous location — in a nearby plaza at 550 Broad St. — for 15 years. Going forward, they will only manage the new location.
“This is the first restaurant we call our own,” Lemus said.
They also run a second Tacos Mi Nacho location at 1796 Meriden-Waterbury Turnpike in Southington.
The new building was designed to look like a Mexican ranch. Wood salvaged from a century-old house that previously stood on the site was used for the bar and frames.
The menu has not changed but the plan is to expand it in the future. The restaurant has a large bar at the entrance, but the owners are still waiting for a liquor license. They plan to have a full bar including house cocktails. This will be the first time the company has sold alcohol.
When the couple was asked about the hardest parts of the process, Lemus said “everything was a challenge.” He noted that construction of the new building began just before the pandemic and COVID-19 uncertainties led to a brief pause on the project.
Lemus said prices had risen and companies working on the project had experienced a labor shortage.
Lemus recalled when they opened the first location 15 years ago his eldest daughter was born. Lemus said he recently spoke to his wife about his pride that the whole family now works at the restaurant.
“I’m just happy to watch them grow,” Sofia Lemus said of her parents’ new building.
Luis Lemus said the new restaurant brought big changes for the family and employees as they were used to a much smaller space. Employees from the old site have been transferred to the new one and new employees have recently been hired.
Trevor Summa, 10, from Meriden, was celebrating his birthday on Tuesday with his father, James Summa, at Tacos Mi Nacho. James Summa said the Mexican restaurant was his son’s favourite. He has been a patron for 15 years and called the new building “fantastic”. Trevor Summa likes the new building, but he’s also happy that they “still have good food”.
Ciro Solis, of Meriden, was also at the restaurant on Tuesday with his daughter Rose Solis. He has been a client for about 12 years and described the new building as “beautiful, quiet and family-friendly”.
Tacos Mi Nacho can be reached at 203-379-0259.
Journalist Karla Santos can be reached at [email protected]