Chula Vista has been a Tex-Mex destination in Beaumont for nearly 30 years — complete with a radio jingle that local folks may remember from back when the “hit” had constant radio play 10 years ago.
But aside from coining the term “hot sauce head,” Chula Vista does in fact do things a little differently — after all, they continue to please customers who have stuck around since 1980 while earning new ones every day.
“We’ve been around so long, so a lot of our customers know the menu and they know they’re going to get great service,” said Kari Cardenas, general manager of Chula Vista, adding that several staff members (including head chef Eulalio) have been working at the establishment for well over 20 years. “But our new customers love to come in because there’s always a good mix in the crowd here.”
The authentic restaurant is inviting to people of all ages, offering a senior discount, daily drink specials and an array of light, lean menu options so that everyone can enjoy a meal at Chula Vista.
“We have fresh vegetables that we prepare daily, and all our food is cooked fresh every day,” said Cardenas. “We have baked chips as an option for people watching their weight, and a really popular item is the U-Special Nachos.”
The U-Special Nachos are named for none other than their creator — chef Eulalio, affectionately known to his customers “Mr. U.” Rather than just a stack of chips with a mountain of grub on top (though those are fun, too), these nachos feature individualized tortillas each dressed with different options — beans, seasoned meat, cheese, sour cream, guacamole and pico de gallo.
“He’s our main man,” Cardenas said of Mr. U, who has to be on top of his game to handle the extensive menu at Chula Vista. Thankfully, he’s got it covered. From serving items ranging from the Tocino shrimp, the Mexican Flag, the chicken fried steak (yes, they have it) and even the authentic Mexican dishes served every weekend at Chula Vista — the food is incredible.
“So many people ask why we don’t package our chips and hot sauce,” Cardenas laughed. “And our margaritas taste great.”
So great, in fact, that Chula Vista serves up what must be the world’s largest margarita seven days a week. The Mega Rita, measuring in at 45 ounces of fresh, cool delicious margarita, is quite a sight — and only $9.99 all day every Saturday—though Happy Hour six days a week from 4-7 p.m. is something to take advantage of, as well.
And Chula Vista has become quite the hot spot on the karaoke circuit, with karaoke every Thursday from 6 - 10 p.m. (look out for the karaoke van parked outside). Live music provided by the likes of Thomas Cokinos happens every Friday as well—and if you find Chula Vista on Facebook, you’re certain to be in on daily food and drink specials, as well as live entertainment updates.
Whether you and the family are enjoying delicious food and great service inside or a MegaRita on the patio under the palapas, go to Chula Vista, baby. Taste the dif-fer-ence.