Basehor-based Rodeo Mexican Restaurant focuses on service, fresh food

A mariachi band performs for a packed house Friday at the grand opening of Rodeo Mexican Restaurant in Basehor. The restaurant, which first opened in late May, has been working to overcome the bad reputation of its predecessor, with a focus on good service and fresh food. Enlarge photo

August 11, 2015

Carlos Garcia and Maria Guerrero haven’t been in the Kansas City area for long, but thanks to customers at their Basehor restaurant, they are starting to feel at home.

The couple opened Rodeo Mexican Restaurant, 15510 State Ave., Suite 11, in late May and say they are determined to provide excellent service and fresh food to overcome the reputation of the location’s predecessor.

“We’re totally different,” Guerrero said. “The service is better. I feel like people were kind of scared to come in and try us because of the restaurant here before. Now, more people are coming and realizing that we are not the same as the other one — not at all.”

Garcia has worked in restaurants since he was a teen, and most recently the couple lived in a suburb of Houston.

But they decided they wanted to open their own restaurant, so Garcia began looking for locations in the Kansas City area about six months ago because many people in his native Mexican town who had come to the United States had settled here.

“They told him it was a good place to do business and to have a restaurant,” Guerrero said.

She said they found the Basehor spot that had previously been the home of a different Mexican restaurant and was almost ready to go.

“We looked at the town and we saw that we have different food from around here, and we knew we were going to make it here because the food is so different from other restaurants,” Guerrero said.

Garcia and Guerrero are serious when they say their food is different: Already, their customers have commented on the unique options. For example, most people have never seen the “fried avocado” on the lunch menu: A deep fried avocado stuffed with the diner’s choice of meat and cheese.

There’s also the Pollo Rodeo, a chicken breast stuffed with shrimp, tomatoes, cilantro and onions, and topped with mushrooms, tomatoes, onions and butter sauce.

But the menu also features plenty of familiar options, with enchiladas, fajitas, burritos and tacos. Garcia says their food is authentic Mexican food, and one thing diners will definitely find on the menu is variety — they have completely separate lunch and dinner menus.

The couple said everything is made fresh, from the homemade tortillas to the sauces.

“Everything is made from scratch, from here,” Guerrero said. “We don’t use cans for the sauces or something — everything is made fresh.”

They say they also are flexible, if customers have special requests.

“We are open to them, whatever they decide to eat,” Guerrero said. “We can fix any plate they can imagine or would like to eat.”

The restaurant’s name honors Garcia’s family’s ranch in Mexico, and the “R” in the logo is styled after the brand the family uses on their livestock.

Rodeo already has gotten some rave reviews on, with a 4.5 star average. Rodeo is open Sunday through Thursday, 11 a.m. to 9 p.m., and 11 a.m. to 10 p.m. on Fridays and Saturdays.

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