A self-described example of the American dream, Jose “Pepe" Ramos came to the United States and through hard work achieved great professional success. He left his home in central Mexico back in 1973, shortly after the death of his father, in search of financial support for his mothers and brothers. He didn’t speak any English, but within two years ascended from dishwasher to cook to chef and, finally, to restaurateur, opening a small 24-seat eatery, Azteca Mexican Restaurant, in Burien.
Some four decades later—with help from his three brothers and his mother, Camerina—Jose is now at the helm of a 35-restaurant franchise, with locations sprinkled from the Pacific Northwest to Florida. Decadent Mexican feasts—such as enchiladas verdes, shrimp fajitas, and carne asada—are the bread and butter of his success, thanks to Camerina’s family recipes. Yet, the Ramos family doesn’t hesitate to introduce new-to-the-family favorites either; for instance, they marinate and bake seasoned lamb shanks to create Borrego Azteca, and conjure bowls of molcajete from sautéed chicken and beef. Best of all, the Ramos relieve thirsty gullets with signature margaritas muddled together from housemade citrus juices and the sap of fresh-squeezed tequila trees.
At Casa Durango, chefs whip up a smorgasbord of Mexican eats, with a spread of tortas, tacos, salads, and burritos paired with frosty tropical cocktails and margaritas. Like a computer manual written by Stephen King, the menu is as lengthy as it is appetizing. It presents dozens of different steaks, enchiladas, seafood, and chicken dishes ladled with zesty sauces and complemented by sides of savory rice and beans. The dishes run the gamut from traditional, homey plates of marinated lamb shank and slow-simmered pork to group-pleasing dishes of nachos and taquitos. And when it comes to entertaining groups, the restaurant also hosts karaoke performances that lighten the mood on weekends.
Since Frank Tonkin Sr. opened his first Taco Time in 1962, each location has hand-chopped its own vegetables and concocted pots of fresh-cooked pinto beans every morning. Try the classic beef crisp burrito ($2.79) or its meat-free cousin, the veggie soft taco ($4.69), with a side of spherical, seasoned Mexi-fries ($1.69 for a regular). Watch your figure through southwest chop-salad-colored glasses, with black bean and corn salsa, pico de gallo, and mixed veggies ($5.59). Or opt for a cup of white chicken chili, another of many healthy options at just 139 calories ($1.99).
El Quetzal is renowned for its fish tacos, tortas, and other Mexican favorites. Here’s more about this beloved hotspot:
Kick back and enjoy flavorful tacos, burritos and chips and salsa at Blue Water Taco Grill. Blue Water Taco Grill is also a good option for those with special dietary needs, offering both low-fat and gluten-free items on the menu. Find the perfect vintage to complement your meal — Blue Water Taco Grill offers a fine selection of wines, beers, and beyond. Tots and tykes will be right at home at Blue Water Taco Grill with its kid-approved food and ambience. Outdoor seating is ready for diners on those warm summer days.
The dress code at Blue Water Taco Grill is as relaxed as the ambience, so wear whatever suits you. Or, take your food to-go. A catering menu is also available if you're looking to dazzle the guests at your next shindig.
Blue Water Taco Grill patrons can find street parking at the Queen Anne Ave N location.
You'll find your bill at Blue Water Taco Grill to be more than reasonable, with most meals costing less than $15. Breakfast, lunch, and dinner are all on Blue Water Taco Grill's menu — you can stop by whenever the moment's right for you.