La Rondalla

Vaporware on a Plate

La Rondalla Claims It'll Reopen Next Week

La Rondalla’s sign illuminated, as seen in February of last year.

La Rondalla has been threatening to reopen ever since they closed—which was so damn long ago, no one really remembers when that was (was Bush still in office?  Had Google Buses been invented yet?  Was PBR still a “thing”?).  At this point, they’ve claimed they’d be opening “soon” so many times, their perpetual opening impotency has become something of a neighborhood joke.

But here we go again: La Rondalla says they’re opening next week.  According to Inside Scoop, the restaurant is back in business starting next Thursday, May 1st.  They’re even taking reservations!  Is it actually true this time?

We swung by this afternoon and, yes, the place looks like they’re getting things together ahead of a opening—tables being setup, a kitchen being prepped, a half dozen employees milling about… their neon signs were even blinking and buzzing.  Of course, we’ve been hoodwinked before.

Here’s what Inside Scoop says we can (might?) expect:

For the most part, the new La Rondalla will feature a similar menu as the last incarnation of La Rondalla, albeit with a few new dishes like chicharrones appetizers, shrimp cocktails, corn on the cob with cheese, and something that was never on the menu before: carnitas. Many of the favorites — botanas, enchiladas and margaritas — will be returning to 901 Valencia.

There are some tweaks. The kitsch has been dialed down, with only “some” Christmas lights lining the walls. There won’t be a full mariachi band either; citing space constrictions, the Barrios family opted instead to have a trio of musicians play on Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays.

Dialing down the kitsch is a bummer sitch, but with the rest of Valencia embracing the maddenimg sameness of Edison-lit wood, any place that even imitates campy weirdness is welcome.

Rumor: La Rondalla to be Filled By Marina Cal French Restaurant?

After years of threatening to reopen the 60+-year-old restaurant, we're hearing that the family behind La Rondalla has thrown in the towel and sold to Isa, a self-described “Cal French small plate restaurant” located in the Marina.  The sale hasn't turned up yet on the ABC's website, so we're still putting this out there as a rumor.  However, as recently as October, the family told the Chronicle that they were “having some financial troubles.”  So with the land and building being assessed at nearly $3m, it wouldn't be surprising if the cash-strapped family cashed out before the Valencia restaurant bubble inevitably bursts.

Lights On At La Rondalla

La Rondalla has been saying they're going to reopen “any day now” for the past million years, so I don't know if this is a sign that they're actually going to open.  But electricity is flowing!  Perhaps pitcher-sized shitshows aren't far behind?

La Rondalla (Once Again) Slated to Open in a Few Weeks

Note: old construction photo.

We've reported on the supposed reopening of La Rondalla so many times in the past that I'm not certain I believe this, but Grub Street is claiming that the beloved Valencia Street shithole is due to reopen in the coming weeks:

Before shuttering in 2008, Mexican dive La Rondalla (Valencia & 20th) was affectionately referred to across the webs as a “Rosarita crack den” and a “diarrhea factory,” but it was nonetheless a beloved neighborhood hang with cheap drinks and lots of Christmas lights. We've been hearing for over a year now that sisters Betty and Luna Barrios were trying to reopen their father Carlos Barrios's restaurant, since he never chose to lease it out, and renovations have been proceeding really slowly by all accounts. But Eater now brings word that that a reopening is close! By June at the latest, they say.

Read on.

Looks Like Someone is Still Trying to Revive La Rondalla

We mentioned six months ago that margarita destination/diarrhea factory La Rondalla planned to reopen around Christmas.  Clearly that never happened, but now it looks like the restaurant-who-called-wolf is actually getting serious about openning up their doors for the first time in years.  They've obtained a 3 month permit for reserved street space for renovations and it appears a bunch of work is going on inside:

No word as to when they will actually reopen, but count on it happening some time around the competition of the Bay Bridge Replacement.

La Rondalla Being Raised From the Dead

Believe it or not, but Vanlencia's La Rondalla, home of hazy memories, enchilada-induced food comas and numerous rat sightings, is currently being gutted and set to reopen this winter.  According to a worker on the scene, who asked us what the food was like because this place closed down prior to his birth, the owners hope to be open before Christmas and are updating the place to be slightly more modern.  While this place definitely cultivated a love/hate relationship with their patrons, I can't wait to start guzzling their margaritas again.  In the meantime, here's UP/AL contributor Laura Beck's stunning Yelp review of La Rondalla:

i got into a fight with a friend (I will not name names! PLEASE STOP ASKING!!! I AM A VERY PRIVATE WOMAN!!!) one night and she ended up running out of the bar and wandering down Valencia and into the rosarita crack den that is La Rondalla. She proceeded to order cheese enchiladas and ignore me while i tried to reason with her. The night ended when she turned to a tortilla and declared it her only real friend. I tried to rip it out of her hand and eat it to show her what i thought of her friend but her grip was strong and her message was clear: if i were to actively pursue that tortilla there would most definitely be blood spilled. not mine, mind you. i'm tough! anyway, i chose to back away from the tortilla (i'm not that crazy! okay, i am but honestly, i was tired and just waiting for her to calm down.) I ordered my own. They were alright.

I like this place. I would like to take a date here to test his patience for all things ridiculous. Please god someone ask me out before I end it all. Please. I mean, aren't there any dentists out there that are tired of drugging women in their chairs so they can stick it in?! I WILL HAPPILY PUT OUT WITHOUT THE FACADE OF AN APPOINTMENT OR COSTLY ANESTHESIA!!!

Jesus Christ, people!