Oscar’s Taco Shop owners branch into Spring Hill; opening this week


Oscar’s Taco Shop owners branch into Spring Hill; opening this week

For restaurant-lovers in Spring Hill, a month already crazy-fun with grand openings is about to get even more loco.

Cali Burrito Mexican Grill in the Spring Hill Village shopping center at 4935 Main Street is working hard to open its doors on Saturday.  Owned by the same family who owns the well-loved Oscar’s Taco Shop chain,  Cali Burrito’s menu will be very similar but add a few unique items.

New to Oscar’s regulars will be several specialty burritos, called the Cali, the Grande and the Ground, as well as a shrimp-and-white-sauce quesadilla.

The restaurant may open Saturday, but at absolute latest on Monday, at 10 a.m. either day.

“We have a little more work to do than we thought, but it is coming along, and we are getting close,” Luis Javier Ruiz, who owns and operates the Mallory Lane Oscar’s, said. For Cali Burrito, Ruiz partnered with his son, Adrian, who will run the SoCal-inspired parrilla.

The Ruiz’ are taking over the location from Harald Garcia, who ran it as Taco Express for years until deciding not to renew his lease this winter.

Taco Express’ last day was Tuesday.

Harold Garcia at the Taco Express counter on its last day open

Changes off the menu will not be major at first.

Ruiz said they plan to cover and update the existing patio to make it more sheltered, to enable customers to eat outside for longer periods of the year. The decor will also change from Taco Express’ style.

“We will be redoing it in the ‘Cali’ style,” Ruiz said.

They currently have their beer permit, also. But a liquor license and consequent margarita machine are next on the list.

Ruiz said, if possible, he would like to have one in by late spring.

Cali will be the fourth restaurant to open in Spring Hill within the past four weeks. If you count the Spring Hill Bakery last Saturday kicking off a retail store to go with their kitchen at Rippavilla Plantation, it is the fifth.

Other openings included: Ten/27 Grille opening three weeks ago, and  both Zaxby’s and LongHorn Steakhouse opening Monday.

Ruiz, who with his brothers brought Oscar’s and their family recipes from San Diego via Phoenix to Franklin about a decade ago, feels the new Cali Burrito will be a success. For which he has a simple recipe:

“If you do good food and treat people good you will get customers.”

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