Mexican fast food chain from Utah opens its first location | Greyson F

When it comes to tasty Mexican food, the first state that comes to mind probably isn’t Utah. However, a Utah-based Mexican fast food chain has honed its craft by making everything on its menu from scratch, every day (including tortillas), and expanding into new markets. It also seeks to rival the assortment of Mexican restaurants in the Valley, with the chain’s first-ever location in Arizona.

About to open in Buckeye, Cafe Rio Mexican Grill combines the new with the old. It takes an ancient way of cooking food, where everything is homemade, including salsas, marinated meats and guac. And it combines it with the new, where almost all customer interactions with the restaurant will be digital.

Customers can enter the restaurant and place their orders at one of two large digital kiosks (similar to the digital kiosks found at other fast food chains like McDonald’s).

For those who don’t fancy going in, they can place an order through the Cafe Rio Mexican Grill app and receive their food curbside, and there’s also a drive-thru option. Of course, all the food inside is still prepared by employees, but digital order taking helps free up staff to focus entirely on food preparation.

The very first Cafe Rio Mexican Grill opened in St. George, Utah in 1997. According to the restaurant, they focus on making food from southern New Mexico, Texas as the “region” of the Rio Grande in Mexico (of course, the Rio Grande is called Rio Bravo in Mexico, and the “region” is the entire Mexico/Texas border down to the Gulf of Mexico). After several years of preparing fresh food daily, the restaurant has expanded to six locations around St. George. Eventually, new management took over (multiple times), and now Cafe Rio Mexican Grill has moved south to Arizona.

Some of the menu items include the Sweet Pork Barbacoa, which is smothered in the restaurant’s specialty sauce and loaded with pulled pork, rice, and beans. The Sweet Pork Barbacoa Salad as well as the Burrito Enchilada style are other fan favorites. On the menuwhich also includes everything from tacos to nachos and a handful of specialty sauces.

Cafe Rio Mexican Grill in Buckeye is located at 19550 West Indian School Road (#140). It is open Monday to Saturday from 10:30 a.m. to 10:00 p.m. and Sunday from 11:00 a.m. to 10:00 p.m.

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