High desert foodies are excited about the new Roll-Em-Up Taquitos restaurant arriving this summer at Restaurant Row on Amargosa Road in Victorville.
The Southern California-based “street casual” restaurant is known for its beef, chicken and cheese taquitos, which are hand-rolled, pan-fried in cast-iron skillet and prepared daily, according to the company.
The Victorville Roll-Em-Up will occupy the building that once housed the Cafe Rio Mexican Grill in the commercial development that also houses the Cracker Barrel Old Country Store and several other restaurants.
Café Rio opened with great fanfare in 2017 and closed three years later. The company has not disclosed the reason for the location’s closure, but industry executives believe state restrictions on restaurants amid the COVID-19 pandemic have led to the closure, reported the Daily Press.
The building, which now sports an orange and white paint job, includes a large banner that says “Now Hiring”, “Good Vibes Only” and “Apply Online @ RollEmUp.com / jobs”.
The Victorville Roll-Em-Up store will be the company’s third after opening the first in 2019 in Chino Hills and later in Brea. No specific opening date has been announced.
The chain plans to open a minimum of 10 taquito locations by the end of the year and expand to more than 500 locations over the next five years, according to a press release from the company.
Mexican food aficionado Sylvia Luna, 45, of Hesperia, told the Daily Press that she has eaten at Chino Hills Roll-Em-Up several times and is excited about High Desert’s new location .
“My mom and grandma’s homemade taquitos are the best I’ve ever tasted, but Roll-Em-Ups are right there with them,” said Luna, who works at a local supermarket. “Taquitos are addicting and I love their dips.”
Luna said the “meaty freshness” used in corn and flour taquitos is “very noticeable and flavorful,” as are the potatoes, sauces, guacamole and salsas.
The restaurant menu includes street corn – elotes in Spanish – which are served on a stick or in a cup, and are loaded with butter, mayonnaise and cotija cheese. Corn is also served with a dusting of hot Cheetos or Tajin seasoning.
The restaurant offers homemade beans and rice, fries and fried “churro fritters” drizzled with caramel sauce.
Drinks include Coca-Cola products, Batch Craft Soda, Jamaican agua, pink lemonade, assorted horchata flavors, and other drinks.
“We are a family-run restaurant that offers a unique drinking experience with every visit and reggae music for the ambiance,” said Ryan Usrey, CEO and founder of Roll-Em-Up Taquitos in a statement.
The inspiration behind the fast-casual taquito-centric restaurant came from Usrey’s mother, Karen, who made her popular beef taquitos for family celebrations and other occasions.
“Growing up in Southern California, our family has always loved eating all kinds of Mexican food, especially taquitos,” Usrey said. “My mom did taquitos every weekend for me and my dad. When cooked fresh and served hot and crispy, it makes all the difference and always hits the mark.
As Usrey, his father Ron and their family continued to discuss opening a restaurant reserved for taquitos, “Mama Karen” passed away before they could make the dream come true together, the company said.
After opening its first store, the company began selling an average of 3,500 taquitos per day, with a constant stream of cars winding around the parking lot daily.
The future of the company
The homemade taquito brand is targeting markets across the country, including California, Nevada, Arizona, Utah, Idaho, Texas, Colorado and Oregon.
With 38 franchise units in development since it launched franchise opportunities in April, the company plans to forward 100 units.
In an interview with FastCasual, Usrey said that for franchisees there will be a minimum of three stores and a “territory fee” of $ 20,000 per location, plus an additional franchise fee of $ 20,000 per location.
There is also a 5% royalty fee and a 1.5% general marketing fee. The total investment range is $ 278,000 to $ 795,000 and depends on construction and location.
For more information, visit www.RollEmUp.com.
Daily Press reporter Rene Ray De La Cruz can be reached at 760-951-6227 or [email protected] Follow him on Twitter @DP_ReneDeLaCruz.