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Author: Subject: Mama Espinoza Restaurant report!
Elona
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[*] posted on 1-5-2017 at 07:00 AM


Quote: Originally posted by Bajaboy  
Food and service has been crap for years at Mama's. In fact, I don't recall ever getting a meal worth its value there.


I agree. We have been there in 2015 and it was dirty and expensive. I have never seen before such disgusting toilets.




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[*] posted on 1-5-2017 at 07:40 AM


Quote: Originally posted by willardguy  
I always felt the best part of mama's was browsing around all the off road memorabilia, not the food!

i feel the same way. great memorabilia, common food.
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[*] posted on 1-5-2017 at 08:02 AM


Mama Espinoza’s Restaurant still remains a great place to eat in Baja California on your way south. I highly recommend the lobster burritos. Delicious. The bathrooms are cleaned on a continuous basis. That said I have personally seen that people who use the bathroom horibly abuse it by thowing paper towels and toilet paper all over intead of in the trash can. They take baths at the sink and leave it a filthy mess. They also urinate and crap on the toilet seats without regard for other users. When these issues are found they are immediately cleaned up. Are the offenders Americans, Canadians, Mexicans or another race. Who knows. All I know that those who do these nasty acts need to have the crap kicked out of their anus.
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[*] posted on 1-5-2017 at 09:59 AM


I will take up the CHALLENGE to find the best place to eat in El Rosario!

I'll be there for 10 days next month (Feb. 4-13) and will set out each day to savor the fine cuisine from the Pemex to the bridge. From ER de Arriba to ER de Abajo and to Nuevo Uruapan (the 3 communities of ER). From the mountains to the ocean. From the taco trucks to the 4 star places ;). Nothing will escape my gastrointestinal processing unit! I'll talk to the locals like Antonio (of Baja Cactus/Halcones del Desierto fame) who I've met, to Primo (El Sinahi) who I know, and any others I can.

I was there in November, staying at the Cactus and walking to Mama's. Our group faired well. Service: good Food: good. My friends and I are experienced "Latino travel eaters" (Mexico, Puerto Rico, Peru, Honduras, Guatemala, etc.). We found the food to be fine, but a little boring. If we'd had more time, we could have feasted on items mentioned above, that seem to be everyone's favorites, but we didn't know.

I'll drag along my ginger root and some "Bismuth subsalicylate" (Peto-bismal/Kaopectate). Got any other suggestions of "after dinner mints" to have on hand?

So, if you hear from me after Valentines Day, you'll know that me and my innards have made it safely back and that this gastronome (lover of good food) will "spill the frijoles" about El Rosario's eateries.

"To eat is to..."
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[*] posted on 1-5-2017 at 10:09 AM


I never been to this restaurant, " Mama Espinoza's." but before I visit many restaurants I look at the internet reviews from sites like Yelp, Trip Advisor, or other review sites.

From reading most of the 83 reviews on "Trip Advisor" which were mixed about 50/50 both pro and con.

I would probably avoid this restaurant because there were just too many negative reviews that seemed to outweigh the positive reviews. The negative reviews really focused on the high price of the food, quality of food, and service of the restaurant staff.

What I take away from the reviews, is this is a theme restaurant, that's over priced for a Mexican restaurant, and the food quality is rated mostly so-so, to down right bad.

From reading about the bathrooms in " Mama Espinoza" in this thread, the only word that comes to mind is nasty.

I will skip this restaurant.

The reviews:

https://www.tripadvisor.com/Restaurant_Review-g499399-d21829...





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David K
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[*] posted on 1-5-2017 at 10:25 AM


While I have not eaten at Mama's as often as some of you apparently have, given how horrible you always think it was, I have been 'lucky', I guess? Not getting sick, not needed to use the restroom there, not having terrible service any worse than other places in Baja, has been our experience the few times there the past 13 some years.

Sure, it is Baja-tourist oriented, costs more (not a lot more) for basic items, but other than a bit slow on service, no complaints from Baja Angel or myself... not enough to tarnish the place out-of-business.

Yes, we like other places there in Rosario... and they have mostly been Ed and Yolanda's (Baja's Best B&B, Bar, Restuarant) or Primo's (Sinahi) or Hugo's (Tacos Misión) restaurants.

Here are the few photos I have taken at Mama Espinoza's Restaurant in El Rosario:

Thanksgiving Dinner 2004


Antonio (BajaCactus), Tony Miranda (Diamante Del Mar project),
and I (David K) at Mama Espinoza's Restaurant

I am enjoying 'Baja Turkey'

Which is usually called LOBSTER!

May 2005


Sunday morning we have breakfast at Mama Espinosa's.
Here Antonio and Lorenia Muñoz (owners of Baja Cactus Motel and Pemex)
chat with Mama Espinoza's daughter Roli.

July 2009


A Baja landmark and traditional stop for many, many years in El Rosario... long before the highway was built and the Baja off-road races from before. The restaurant has been remodeled and food and service were great.

101 years old and still going strong!


Mama (Anita) Espinoza autographs her book for me.
Born on Oct. 16, 1910 per her 2002 published biography.
However, her 1994 autobiography says the year was really1908.
We talk about the old days and of my first trip through El Rosario in 1966.
Her memory is so strong that she recalls visitors that long ago.

Elizabeth and Doña Anita Espinoza

It was a great honor to meet this famous lady after so many visits to El Rosario. There is even a museum about Mama Espinoza, see the photos: http://vivabaja.com/406 (taken in 2006).




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[*] posted on 1-5-2017 at 10:28 AM



Thanks for rolling back the clock, DK.




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[*] posted on 1-5-2017 at 11:00 AM


Thanks David! As a first timer there in November, I thought the place was cool. It was crawling with off-roaders for the upcoming race. The memorabilia hanging all around was impressive. A jaunt through the store showed glimpses of what was. The food and service were good, no complaints. It was a little pricey.

As with all things: tastes differ and change; place remembered evolve. Baja is so much different from my first experience in 2002! I can't even imagine what Udo's experience was like 50 years ago!
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[*] posted on 1-5-2017 at 12:27 PM


Espinosas was never about the food...It was and is about the Lady who ran it. I sat with her many times years ago and listened to her stories, she sang me nursery rhymes..told me about going to school...bought her books..She was a Grand lady..and a legend.....Its a shame that this thread has degenerated into a peeing contest between fools..



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[*] posted on 1-5-2017 at 01:19 PM


Quote: Originally posted by chuckie  
Espinosas was never about the food...It was and is about the Lady who ran it. I sat with her many times years ago and listened to her stories, she sang me nursery rhymes..told me about going to school...bought her books..She was a Grand lady..and a legend.....Its a shame that this thread has degenerated into a peeing contest between fools..


To each his own, but if you ask me it sounds like a few of you are looking for a museum, rather than a good restaurant.

And those photos of the restaurant look great 13 years ago, but things could change in 13 years.

If this restaurant can't put out decent good quality food on a consistent basis, and at a reasonable price, then perhaps they should turn the place into some kind of shrine or pubic museum.

Maybe, it's just me, but I go to restaurants for the food, although the ambiance does count for smething.

I also pay close attention to reviews, and when you see the same complaints over, and over again. It's a good hint, something may be wrong at the establishment, and I'm not just talking about restaurants.
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[*] posted on 1-5-2017 at 02:02 PM


I wholeheartedly agree with DENNIS!


Quote: Originally posted by DENNIS  

Thanks for rolling back the clock, DK.




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[*] posted on 1-5-2017 at 03:08 PM


Quote: Originally posted by Udo  
I wholeheartedly agree with DENNIS!



Thanks for wholeheartedly agreeing with me, Udo. :lol:








[Edited on 1-6-2017 by BajaNomad]




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Nashville Frank
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[*] posted on 1-5-2017 at 03:22 PM


Quote: Originally posted by JoeJustJoe  

If this restaurant can't put out decent good quality food on a consistent basis, and at a reasonable price, then perhaps they should turn the place into some kind of shrine or pubic museum....

I also pay close attention to reviews, and when you see the same complaints over, and over again....


Hey JoeJustJoe,
From my experience in the restaurant business and as an eater of their products, I have come to understand that many who have had a good to better to great experience with their food are so much less interested in communicating to world their experience, than are those who had bad to terrible experiences.

When they feel "robbed/snubbed/mistreated" etc. they're going to speak out and usually loudly. Hence the negative reviews which outweigh the good reviews. I've gone to the very same places as the negative crowd and I did not find it so. On the other hand, though, I've gone to places highly loved and came away wondering why anyone would eat there.

There's so many variables. Time of day, cook, waitress, what was ordered, your mood, your health, your expectaions, the weather, your bank account level, etc.

Also, when dealing with "foreign" food such as Mexican, you're going to get a variation in likes and dislikes, as you will in varieties of Mexican food. I'm from California and growing up, I always knew what Mexican food was like. That was before Taco Bell ever appeared. But since then I've lived in many states and their Mexican was not always my Mexican. It sort of depends on what you get accustomed to. And where the restaurant's owners and cooks are from. And then there's the Tex/Mex issue: popularized "Mexican" food that is modified to fit the taste palates of Americans. This Tex/Mex is an infusion of Mexican, American (mostly Texan), and some Southwest Indian. So is it Mexican? No! What is Mexican food?? Well I can't tell you. I've eaten from Merida to Zacatecas to Baja and in between and its all different.

So, I say all this to say: give it a try yourself. Those reviewers may not have it right, but then again they might. Restaurants come and go. Sometimes its management, sometimes its the food. In America, up to 90% of all new start restaurants close in there first year! Of those that remained open after one year 70% of them closed in 3-5 years. 90% of restaurants still open after five years will stay in business for a minimum of 10 years. Mama's did that! Much more than that! Sure these longstanding restaurants have their reputation to bolster them. But, they learn to change with the times and the changing of customers.

I think Mama's is just fine and will weather the onslaught of Travel Advisor reviewers. Its family and many here feel a part of that family!

Stop by sometime...


[Edited on 1-6-2017 by Nashville Frank]
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[*] posted on 1-5-2017 at 03:40 PM


thats all well and good and we could go on and on about what a legend Mama was and about all the cool memorabilia on the walls. the fact remains only two people in the restaurant at 8am and took over an hour to be served overpriced cold food.
this is the reason there's a restaurant review forum here.
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[*] posted on 1-5-2017 at 04:12 PM


Yes, and we appreciate that... the sad thing about restaurants in many Baja places is the lack of consistency. The next day, it may be totally different... and a great experience.

What is one to do, just eat PB & Js instead of taking a risk of slow service or bad food? One thing that makes Baja appealing to SOME is the adventure of the unknown or that it is different than at home.

Antonio is right to want to have a quality eatery in town, as so many restaurants and taco stands have come and gone since I have been spending more time in El Rosario the past 12 years. It will be great for his motel business, as being next to Mama's once was.




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[*] posted on 1-5-2017 at 04:37 PM


As I've said before, "one man's experience is one man's experience". Can't always generalize to the entire world.



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[*] posted on 1-5-2017 at 04:54 PM


Quote: Originally posted by David K  
Yes, and we appreciate that... the sad thing about restaurants in many Baja places is the lack of consistency. The next day, it may be totally different... and a great experience.

What is one to do, just eat PB & Js instead of taking a risk of slow service or bad food? One thing that makes Baja appealing to SOME is the adventure of the unknown or that it is different than at home.

Antonio is right to want to have a quality eatery in town, as so many restaurants and taco stands have come and gone since I have been spending more time in El Rosario the past 12 years. It will be great for his motel business, as being next to Mama's once was.


There is one...La Pasadita! In fact, that is where I ran into Antonio and his family:light:




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[*] posted on 1-5-2017 at 04:59 PM


Quote: Originally posted by ncampion  
As I've said before, "one man's experience is one man's experience". Can't always generalize to the entire world.


Ive had several bad meals at mamas. I Wont be back!

My meals at Mi Casa have always been great. Mi Casa is across street from baseball field. And they have fast service.




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[*] posted on 1-5-2017 at 06:04 PM


Quote: Originally posted by Bajaboy  
Quote: Originally posted by David K  
Yes, and we appreciate that... the sad thing about restaurants in many Baja places is the lack of consistency. The next day, it may be totally different... and a great experience.

What is one to do, just eat PB & Js instead of taking a risk of slow service or bad food? One thing that makes Baja appealing to SOME is the adventure of the unknown or that it is different than at home.

Antonio is right to want to have a quality eatery in town, as so many restaurants and taco stands have come and gone since I have been spending more time in El Rosario the past 12 years. It will be great for his motel business, as being next to Mama's once was.


There is one...La Pasadita! In fact, that is where I ran into Antonio and his family:light:


That's a good sign!




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[*] posted on 1-5-2017 at 06:33 PM


Quote: Originally posted by mtgoat666  
Quote: Originally posted by ncampion  
As I've said before, "one man's experience is one man's experience". Can't always generalize to the entire world.


Ive had several bad meals at mamas. I Wont be back!

My meals at Mi Casa have always been great. Mi Casa is across street from baseball field. And they have fast service.


Thanks! I'll be sure and add that to my list of joints to sample in February!

[Edited on 1-6-2017 by Nashville Frank]
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