Archive for Wednesday, July 18, 2007

New restaurant plans lengthy stay in Basehor

July 18, 2007

Another Mexican restaurant opened its doors Friday afternoon in Basehor.

The building at 15306 Briar Road, east of 155th Street and Kansas Highway 24-40, has been vacant since Casa de Pelones restaurant closed in March, but Eric Caballero, owner of new restaurant Los Portales, said it was easy to set up shop.

"We did a lot of cleaning, but the restaurant was practically ready to go," Caballero said.

The interior has stayed virtually the same as the previous establishment with brightly painted walls, the familiar mermaid mural and boat on adjacent walls and authentic music playing over the speakers. The upstairs portion of the building has been opened to house smoking section seating, Caballero said.

While four other restaurants have tried and failed in this same location since 2003, Caballero said he's hopeful Los Portales has staying power.

The family-owned and operated restaurant is the second of its kind to open in the area. The first Los Portales opened in December in Bonner Springs.

"Business has been pretty good," he said. "Not too bad."

A small staff runs the restaurant, which is open seven days a week from 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. Sunday through Thursday and 11 a.m. to 10 p.m. Friday and Saturday, but Los Portales still is in the hiring process.

While the restaurant is still waiting on its liquor license, which is expected to arrive shortly, the public does have access to a full menu. Caballero said Los Portales tried to cover a little bit of everything, from vegetarian to seafood, chicken, beef and pork plates, several different kinds of nachos, combination plates and a selection of desserts. Fajitas and enchiladas are expected to be the most popular.

"Our menu is a little more complete and different," Caballero said. "And, our prices are not too high."

The family decided to expand to Basehor because of the city's growth and its close proximity to several highways and smaller towns, Caballero said. If Los Portales does well in Basehor, there may be plans to continue expanding.

"We've got the feeling we're going to do well here," he said. "We like this area and we want to stay here."

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