By GEORGE KUNKE
SOUTH BEND – In case you haven’t noticed yet while driving through South Bend on Robert Bush Drive, there’s a new restaurant called Taqueria Lupita’s, which serves genuine, authentic, and delicious Mexican cuisine.
Karina Arredondo and Julian Alvarez, who moved to Washington from Mexico more than six years ago, own Taqueria Lupita’s.
“We invite you to come in and try our food,” Karina said. “We hope to be here for a long time. We believe in serving quality food at low prices. To be successful, I feel you have to not only serve good food, but you must have very good service as well. If you don’t have good service and treat the customer right, they will not come back. Good service is just as important as having good food. I like this type of business. I like cooking and I like talking with the people who come in.”
Karina explained that Taqueria is a type of restaurant that is a smaller building that incorporates the philosophy of selling quality food at lower prices.
The restaurant is located on Robert Bush Drive in South Bend and offers very good food at very moderate prices. One of the favorite items so far are the burritos, which is offered five different ways with rice, beans, lettuce, tomatoes, onions and sour cream for $6.99. Another favorite are the quesadillas for $5.50. The tortas, a Mexican sandwich, is offered for $6.50.
“One thing that a lot of people have been ordering is the sopes. I recommend them. They are very good,” Karina said. An order of sopes comes with three (chicken, beef or pork) and is served with beans, cheese, sour cream, lettuce and Pico de Gallo.
“People have been buying burritos, too, and quesadillas,” she said. “Everything we cook here is homemade,” she added.
Karina and Julian moved to Washington about six years ago from Veracruz, Mexico. They reside in Aberdeen.
The head cook is Carlo Arredondo, Karina’s father, and he has been cooking for professionally for about 30 years. He has cooked in some very big restaurants in Mexico City for more than a decade.
Other choice items include authentic tacos, tamales, empanadas, chilaquiles, flautas, chile rellenos, enchiladas and of course, tostadas.
There are three kinds of “Plates” served, including Huevos a la Mexicana (Mexican style), Chorizo con huevo and Huevo ranchero. All are served with rice, beans and tortilla, and the cost is only $5.75.
“We aren’t selling what other places call specials because we feel that many of our items are priced very low at what is really a special price. Everything on our menu is a special,” she said. “We plan to be adding fajitas soon.”
On the higher priced end of the menu is Carne Azada (steak) for $10.99, which also comes with a nice helping of rice, beans and guacamole. Camarones (shrimp) goes for $10.99 and two types are offered, including A La Diabla, which is shrimp with white hot sauce, and Al Mojo De Ajo, which is shrimp with white mushroom garlic sauce.
Drinks include café, tea, jarritos (Mexican soda), Coca-cola, Monster, V-8, orange juice, milk, choco milk and bottled water.
The atmosphere is casual, the food is fantastic, the service is cordial and friendly, and the quaint little joint is sparkling clean. If you’re hungry for an authentic Mexican dish, give Taqueria Lupita’s a visit.
Taqueria Lupita’s is open Monday through Saturday between the hours of 10 a.m. and 8 p.m. For carry out orders, call 875-8054.