This article appeared in the March 9, 2016 edition of the West Sacramento News-Ledger.
Chando’s Tacos Expands to West Sacramento
by Thomas Farley
West Sacramento’s tradition of fine Mexican food continues with the arrival of Chando’s Tacos. Chando’s Boatman Avenue building will house a restaurant and be the base for a dining dynasty. Besides the eatery itself, the location will house Chando’s Enterprises, offices and ovens to serve “Chando” Madrigal’s growing chain of restaurants and food trucks.
Chando’s has renovated and repurposed the United Bakery building north of Industrial Boulevard. It will now prep food for the West Sacramento restaurant, as well as the Roseville, Power Inn, and Arden outlets. The individual locations, however, will still barbecue their own chicken, fish and carne asada. Looking ahead, Madrigal envisions diners in Folsom, Carmichael, and Elk Grove. Perhaps beyond.
Madrigal’s family is from Michoacan, Mexico. His father owned and ran a tortilla factory there, and now things are coming full circle. The West Sacramento facility will produce 100 percent stone-ground corn tortillas. It will also bake them along with all the bread needed for each Chando’s Tacos location. Food storage and vegetable preparation will also be a function of the building.
Chando’s is located in a mostly triangular area that is rapidly becoming a West Sacramento foodie district. Yolo Brewing, Bike Dog and Jack Rabbit are three craft breweries located among warehouses, corporation yards, and document storage companies. In the shadow of the Rice Farmer’s Cooperative silos, new people and new energy are coming to an area that offers affordable space and room to grow. Helping that growth is everything mobile.
Three high end food trucks make up Chando’s fleet with a fourth a possibility this year. These $100,000 kitchens on wheels are more than just taco trucks. And Chando’s is also mobile in cyberspace. They’ve developed an app lets you call in orders before you arrive. Customers may also go mobile if Chando’s plans for drive-through kiosks take off. What’s on the menu?
Chando’s Tacos presents their own take on Mexican food. Not entirely traditional and not yet not Americanized, the food tastes lighter than that served in most Mexican restaurants. Meatless options are also presented, including mango ceviche tostadas and tacos de Papa, or potato tostadas.
We’ll have to see if Chando’s popularity rivals the now gone Emma’s Taco House or the still operating Sal’s. But it’s safe to say the tradition of great Mexican food in West Sacramento will continue.