It was immediately after World War II in 1946 that Tony and Catalina Gonzales decided to open a restaurant on the present site. Tony had just returned from military service and Catalina, who had contented herself with staying at home while Tony was away, persuaded him to allow her to open a Mexican restaurant right in his parents' home.
Open at first only on weekends, the modest establishment could seat just 26 persons. Catalina did the cooking and Tony helped serve. Soon the word about their chiles rellenos, turkey tacos and other tasty food spread throughout the area and even as far north as Los Angeles. Travelers and local residents would line up outside for long periods of time as they waited to be served.
Soon the Gonzaleses realized that they would have to extend their business days to accommodate the hungry diners. Tony's Jacal, or “old building,” was enlarged several times during the intervening years and the present six-day week was established. Now the restaurant is open every day but Tuesday.
Traditional Mexican dishes are prepared with mild or hot seasonings to please the discriminating palate. The menu also includes some American entrees.
Tony passed away May 1, 1974, and Catalina passed on April 24, 2000. The tradition of serving fine Mexican food is being carried on by their two daughters, grandchildren and great-grandchildren.
The Gonzales family is proud of their cuisine and the years of devoted service they have given their customers, many of whom return regularly for the chiles rellenos and other Mexican favorites.