Hacienda Casa Blanca

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It’s not often that something comes along and almost surpasses the original it was based upon, but that’s the case with one of the East County’s premier Mexican restaurants.

“I had been coming to Antonio’s Hacienda for years, but I never thought I would own it one day,” said Cindy Gomez, who, with her husband, Tony, purchased the venue in 2007, changing the name to Hacienda Casa Blanca.

It’s not often that something comes along and almost surpasses the original it was based upon, but that’s the case with one of the East County’s premier Mexican restaurants.

“I had been coming to Antonio’s Hacienda for years, but I never thought I would own it one day,” said Cindy Gomez, who, with her husband, Tony, purchased the venue in 2007, changing the name to Hacienda Casa Blanca.

Life is a funny thing, especially for Tony Gomez, who grew up dirt poor in Mexico, came to America, met his wife and started a successful tree service. Later, after establishing that, he and Cindy started a restaurant (La Casa Blanco in La Mesa), which they just sold a few weeks ago.
Fans will appreciate the fact that it still remain La Casa Blanca, the quality Mexican diner residents have grown to love.

“We had never done such a thing before and it was incredibly hard work, but we made it a success,” Cindy Gomez said. “We literally outgrew that place. When the opportunity came to move to a larger place, and we saw this was available, we jumped at the chance.”

Still learning how to run such a big restuarant, the Gomez’s continue to offer quality service, fun events and — most important — fantastic food.
“We have some wonderful, original menu items from Tony’s mother, and others,” Cindy Gomez said. “It’s one of the reasons we have such a loyal customer base; one which has followed us to this location.”

Some of those reasons include a variety of Mexican (and even American) fare, inlcuding mariscos (seafood) items, such as Maine Lobster Puerto Nuevo (market price), Camaromes Al Mojo de Ajo (shrimp scampi, $15.45), Campechana (traditional mix of shrimp, octopus and scallops with diced onion, tomato, cucumber and avocado, $ 12.95), Ceviche ($11.95) and the fiery, red hot Camarones a la Diablo (The Devil’s Shrimp, made with a molten sauce and dried chili peppers, $15.95).

Fear not, though, because there are some traditional favorites, including Steak Picado ($13.95), Carnitas Michoacan Estilo Don Juan (chunks of pork spiced and seasoned slowly-cooked and lightly fried ($13.50), Costillas en Salsa (pork ribs simmered in a tomatillo sauce, $13.95), Arrroz con Pollo (slice chicken breast prepared with onions, mushrooms and green peppers over rice and jack cheese, $12.95), Chili Verde ($11.95) and Chili Colorado ($11.95).

Traditional specialties include fresh burritos, tacos, enchilladas, tostadas, as well as appetizers, salads and desserts.