Story by Connor Jaschen, Features Editor
People hungry for tacos, burritos and many other Mexican dishes can visit local favorite Los Portales at its new location on Lowes Drive, by Station 74. The restaurant recently made the move from its previous location in Olympic Plaza on 12th Street.
Festive lights, colorful ceramic tiling and heavy wooden doors are all featured additions to the new building.
Co-owner of Los Portales, Gustavo Leon, originally from San Jose, Mexico, said the decision to move was so the restaurant can maintain the quality of service, rather than for the monetary gain.
Unlike the old location, the new location is owned, rather than rented out, allowing for more independence, Leon said. The move will also allow for more space for the employees to work with, he said.
“The biggest issue [with the old location] was the space in the kitchen,” Leon said
The old location for the restaurant has been vacated by the business, but Leon said they still have plans to utilize the space, at least until the 18-month lease runs out.
“I have a few partners,” Leon said. “We are thinking to do something smaller and try for a little while after we settle here and see how it goes.”
The change in location marks a new step for the restaurant and Leon is already planning for the future.
“We hope to be here in 10 years,” Leon said. “Continue giving good service, good food, good quality. We want to bring in new dishes little by little.”
The new store is located at 1506 Lowes Drive and is open for business.
“We wanted to bring a little bit of Mexico,” Leon said. “Our colors, our culture, so people know what Mexico is about.”
Meghan Keeney, freshman from St. Louis, said Los Portales is probably the fanciest Mexican restaurant she has been to.
“It is Mexican heaven,” she said.
Keeney said the new location is a lot bigger, nicer and cleaner than the old building.
“When I went the service was really quick,” she said. “I love the food, especially the cheese dip.”
Olivia Robertson, sophomore from Mayfield, Kentucky, said she would be taking her family and friends to the new location soon.
“I feel that the food quality is much better, the service is much faster and the building looks awesome,” she said. “I think the re-location was much needed since is it such a well known place.”