Tina’s Mexican Restaurant

By: Mr. Wilson on March 13, 2008
The Missus, Robbie, and I made a spontaneous visit to the brand-spankin' new -- it opened just yesterday -- Tina's Restaurant last night. It is located on Highway 2 across from Channel 8, just in front of Robber's Cave. Here are some scans of the menu. Click to enlarge. image image It's always hard to rate a restaurant on its first day, but my initial hunch is that Tina's will have a better chance at success than King Taco, the former tenant at the location. Why? I can't really put my finger on it, to be honest. The menu feels mostly authentic, but not "too" authentic such that it scares away the skittish. The food is tasty and nicely prepared, and prices are very reasonable. And the interior is clean, warm, and pleasantly decorated. Speaking of the interior, I love the kids' play area. It's the sort of play area you'll only see at a locally-owned restaurant. There are some small tables and chairs, a few toys, and coloring books, all placed on colorful mats. It really makes the place feel homey. I ordered a combination plate featuring a burrito, enchilada, rice, and beans. The burrito was approximately deLeon's size in a fresh tortilla, with shredded beef, green peppers, and onions. The enchilada was smaller, also with shredded beef and onions, and smothered in a red sauce. The beans were of the thinner variety, but not soupy. The Missus ordered a country burrito off the breakfast menu. It featured eggs, potatoes, and I think cheese and onions. (I'll have to double check with her on that.) She said she would definitely order it again. We received a small basket of chips with our meal, with which we sampled the salsa bar. There are three salsas: a thin, green, tomatillo salsa; a thin, red salsa; and a chunkier salsa with plenty of cilantro. The latter was my favorite. It went very well with both of our burritos. Long story short, even on Day 1 Tina's made a good impression on us. I'm a little concerned about their ability to keep up if they get really busy, but that's always a general fear I have with small, local joints. Also note that their credit card terminal was late, so for now it's cash and check only. The terminal was supposed to arrive yesterday. If you go in the next couple days, you may want to have cash available. Also note that Tina's drive-thru is open 24-hours. If you're on a late-night prowl and the neighboring McDonald's doesn't trip your trigger, Tina's is there for you. Added: Heh, I forgot to add this amusing anecdote. When we were leaving, a Suburban pulled up and a family piled out. The father, a relatively imposing fellow, hollered over to us, "So how is it?" We said it deserved a thumbs-up. He took a step toward the door, then stopped and looked at us with a scowl. "It ain't none of that Taco John's crap, is it?" I laughed. "No, no, it definitely is not Taco John's crap."


See what your friends and neighbors have to say about this.

Mr. T
March 13, 2008 at 2:04PM

And to think I almost walked in there last night when you were there.

How were the rice and beans?

Mr. Wilson
March 13, 2008 at 2:06PM

I thought they were good. I can’t really vouch for their authenticity or anything. Like I said, the beans were thin—not the gummy mortar-style beans you get at some places—but not runny. The little bit of rice I had was tasty, but Robbie ate most of my rice. He likes his “wice”.

March 13, 2008 at 2:31PM

I was going to be good and eat the lunch I brought today but I suddenly feel the need for a machaca or chorizo torta.

March 13, 2008 at 5:27PM

So what’s the scoop? Is it, or is it NOT a spin off of Tina’s Cafe up the street?

Either way it looks like a good eat to me!

Mr. Wilson
March 13, 2008 at 5:29PM

You know, I completely forgot to ask. I’ve never been to the other Tina’s, so I can’t even make a guess.

March 13, 2008 at 5:50PM

Another sleepless night…


March 13, 2008 at 6:00PM

there were a good amount of cars in their lot around 11:45

Mr. T
March 13, 2008 at 9:53PM

I’ll definitely check it out later this weekend. I much prefer beans with a thin consistency rather than the thick playdough that they serve at some places.

The location will be a challenge for sure.

March 14, 2008 at 12:33AM

The wife, daughter and I stopped in for dinner tonight. My impressions:

March 14, 2008 at 12:34AM

Our beans were THICK. Cement like. Tasted pretty canned to me.

Mr. T
March 16, 2008 at 3:36PM

Just stopped by there for an early lunch. The owner and his wife mentioned that they are originally from Phoenix, AZ, where they had many years of restaurant management experience. All I can say is: GOD BLESS his soul.

I am a carne asada fiend, but for some reason I opted to try the chicken enchilada and beef taco combo plate. For the prices, this food is good and there is a lot of it. I agree with CP though - I prefer soupier beans and these were a bit on the thick side. I also agree that this is VERY similar to De Leon’s. They also had pickled veggies with the salsa bar too, which was quite nice (albeit only peppers and carrots). But that won’t stop me from coming back here often. Nice addition to the area, and much better than its predecessors.

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