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Restaurant provides Refugio with Mexican flavor, flair

By JR Ortega
Aug. 30, 2014 at 3:18 p.m.
Updated Sept. 1, 2014 at 2:46 p.m.

The quesadilla plate at La Ribera Taqueria and Restaurant in Refugio.

IF YOU GO

• WHAT: La Ribera Taqueria

• WHEN: 5 a.m.-3 p.m. Monday-Friday; 5 a.m.-2 p.m. Saturday; 6 a.m.-2 p.m. Sunday

• WHERE: 428 N. Alamo St., Refugio

REFUGIO - La Ribera Taqueria is Mayra Blaker's family's staple.

Blaker, 45, and her daughter, Shelby, 18, and son, Evan, 10, stop by the Refugio Mexican food restaurant at least three times a week.

"This place is the best," said Blaker as she waited for her plate to arrive for lunch.

La Ribera, which translates to "the bank," has sat at the corner of Alamo and Jeter streets for more than 15 years.

Shelby said she enjoys most of the dishes, especially the barbacoa.

"I had them cater for my graduation party," she said. "I absolutely loved it."

The Woodsboro family is not the only regulars in the place, said Arlene Brown, who has worked at the restaurant for eight years.

Being in a small town with few choices for dining out, the taqueria, owned by Ignacio Montejano, has really made a name for itself, she said.

Montejano, his wife and one of his sons all help run the business. The business is just one of those small-town businesses that grew and eventually became a staple, she said.

"I like it a whole lot," Brown said. "This is a great place to work for."

Montejano is a busy character and lets Brown do most of the leading. Meanwhile, Montejano helps out in the kitchen, helping make tortillas and other Mexican food dishes.

The good food is one thing, but it's also about the atmosphere and the people, Brown said.

"I love the people here," she said. "They're so nice."

The restaurant has that Mexican flair, with its rustic orange and yellow walls. The smell of the onions and meats and the Tex-Mex conversations all add to the ambience of the business.

Juan Mata, 55, who works for Supreme Services in Refugio, makes it his almost-daily lunch stop.

He enjoys the carne asada, but like any good regular, makes an effort to try everything and anything.

"I've always loved coming here," he said.

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