Great news for pandemic dining: Fiesta Taqueria is opening – here’s when
Opening during a pandemic is nothing short of a miracle, but it’s no surprise that Fiesta Taqueria’s planned grand opening Monday in South Hill comes with only a to-go menu.
But, hey. It’s the only restaurant opening I have seen in weeks, so I’ll take it.
The restaurant opens for take-out and online ordering Monday (May 25) and will operate from 11 a.m. to 9 p.m.
This is great news for South Hill diners. The area’s independent restaurant scene grows slowly, so new restaurants quickly become overwhelmed with diners. Even in a pandemic. The excellent Taqueria El Rinconsito opened in March, just ahead of the statewide closure restrictions, but diners reported that lines were long and I’ve seen myself that they remain so this month.
The South Hill Fiesta Taqueria & Tequila Bar is a second outpost. The original Fiesta Taqueria & Tequila Bar has operated in downtown Puyallup at 506 N. Meridian since 2014. It was opened by Ramesh Kumar, who also owns Karma Indian Cuisine in South Hill. Kumar originally opened a restaurant called Salsa 7 in the downtown Puyallup space, but it was short-lived. Long before it was Fiesta Taqueria and Salsa 7, that space held Sam’s Taqueria, known widely as the finest gas station taqueria in all of the land (I still miss it).
Kumar closed the restaurant in 2014 for a refresh and renamed it Fiesta Taqueria. The menu lists the greatest hits of taqueria fare: tacos, enchiladas and burritos, but it also has over the years featured a handful of Oaxacan regional specialties, which can be something tough to find here. It also has a killer salsa bar and serves a mean margarita. There are more than 100 tequilas on the menu, people.
As for the South Hill location, it will operate in a space at 10312 120th St. E., Puyallup – across from Pier One and behind Jimmy John’s. (in South Hill, you always navigate by chain store or restaurant.)
The menu will be the same as the downtown Puyallup location.
Kumar has made over that South Hill space a few different times. It previously operated as an upscale steakhouse called Roadrunner Bourbon and Burger House + Speakeasy Lounge, then it was Napoli Italiano and finally, PNW Grill.
One reason why I always say this is a great restaurant to support: Kumar is widely known for hosting free dinners for members of the military and first responders. These are no-strings dinners and they’re held regularly and frequently. Check the restaurant’s social media for details.
After restaurant restrictions are lifted, will the new Fiesta Taqueria on South Hill have table service like its downtown Puyallup location, or will it be more of a casual-style taqueria where diners order at the counter and find their own seat? “Right now we are still in discussion for how the second location will be set up,” a company spokesperson said via message back in February. I have asked for an update on that information and I hope to have more details soon.
SOUTH HILL: 10312 120th St E, Puyallup
DOWNTOWN PUYALLUP: 506 N. Meridian, Puyallup; 253-445-6525
TAQUERIA EL RINCONSITO
The small regional chain opened its latest outpost in South Hill in March. The fast-casual restaurant comes with a menu of portable taqueria eats and – when restaurant restrictions are lifted – an outstanding salsa bar. Here’s a look at the menu and more information.