Mexican restaurant brings giant taco to Casey’s ‘Big Things’ | Entertainment
CASEY – Cinco de Mayo, usually a celebratory time in Mexican restaurants, is especially important this year for Cilantros Grill & Cantina in Casey.
The restaurant and its The 16-foot-long, 8-foot-tall metal tacos mark their first Cinco de Mayo in this Clark County community, where they both debuted last fall at 25 NW First St. at the southern edge of downtown.
Owner Hector Mendoza of Terre Haute, Indiana, who owns two other Cilantros locations, said when he decided to open a Casey location, it seemed appropriate to place a giant decoration in front.
“Everything is a ‘big thing’ in Casey, so we wanted to fit in with the city,” Mendoza said, referring to the biggest, just-for-fun behemoths Casey’s Bolin Enterprises, Inc. has built in recent years. years as a tourist attraction for this community under the “Big Things, Small Town” program. He added that his favorite “Big Thing” is the biggest rocking chair in the world. The rocking chair was the center of attention on Saturday when motorcyclist Brett Cue jumped his bike from the seat of the chair to a ramp built nearby
After considering different design options for its decoration, Mendoza said he chose a taco because it’s an iconic image and would go well with Cilantros offering a wide variety of tacos. He commissioned Jalcraft Craftsman Alejandro Martinez from Tonalá, Mexico to create the giant taco, as well as two palm trees, tables and chairs for the restaurant’s dining room.
JThe 800-pound metal taco filled a quarter of the tractor-trailer that delivered it to Cilantros last fall, Mendoza said. A small tractor with a lift and 10 people were needed to move the taco into place, a job that caught the attention of many onlookers. Mendoza said he was immediately impressed with the colorful metallic slices of lettuce, tomato, radish, peppers, onions and cilantro that fill the taco. He said they are lively near and far.
“You can see all the little details,” Mendoza said.
The curiosity in the giant taco continued beyond the day of installation. Mendoza said he saw locals and “Big Things” tourists taking photos of the decoration, with several pretending to try to lift or eat the giant taco. Mendoza said he was happy to see many of them stopping to eat at Cilantros.
“You see a lot of people taking photos with the taco,” Casey’s clerk Jeremy Mumford said, adding that lunch is usually a busy time for photos.
Mumford said there hadn’t been a Mexican restaurant in Casey for a few years, so he and other local Cilantros customers appreciated being able to dine on tacos and other Mexican fare again at their little town instead of having to drive to restaurants several miles away. .
Mendoza said he was drawn to Casey by many locals from that community traveling to dine at his restaurant in Terre Haute. He said he was honored that customers in the Casey area took the time to know his staff members by name. Mendoza said he looked forward to Cilantros being able to celebrate its first Cinco de Mayo, which marks the May 5, 1862 victory of the Mexican army over France, with his customers.
“We’ve been happy to be here in Casey. The friendliest people you can find are in Casey,” Mendoza said, adding that residents have practiced hospitality extensively in recent years while welcoming visitors to ” Great things”. “They always welcome them.”
Photos: Motorcyclist Brett Cue jumps his bike from the world’s largest rocking chair
Contact Rob Stroud at (217) 238-6861. Follow him on Twitter: @TheRobStroud