Monday, August 7, 2017

El Torero to Shutter August 25th After 25 Years at Brighten Park

The El Torero Mexican restaurant at Brighten Park will close Friday August 25th.  The restaurant, located around the corner from Moe's Southwest Grill in a 2,800 square foot space, has been a popular casual Mexican restaurant in the area for many nearby residents. 
Management of El Torero cited rent going "way up" as the determining factor in their decision to close after 25 years in business.  

Regency Centers, the property's owner, renamed the center Brighten Park in 2015, simultaneously securing a lease with The Fresh Market for the former Loehmann's space.  The company completed a reported $8 million renovation in late 2015 that included new lighting, landscaping and design elements, among other improvements.   

Shortly before the renovation and in the months/years since, the center has welcomed a number of new dining options including EATaliano, Grub Burger Bar, Smoothie King  and Zo√ęs Kitchen.  

While I was preparing this post, one reader mentioned to me her preference for La Parrilla at nearby Toco Hills Promenade, another casual Mexican restaurant that opened in late 2011. 

According to the El Torero website, the company, which opened their first location in 1981,  also operates locations in Stone Mountain, Roswell, Chamblee and Duluth.  

Are you surprised that El Torero is closing at Brighten Park?  Where is your favorite place for casual Mexican fare in the area?  What would you like to see open in place of El Torero at Brighten Park?

Please share your thoughts below.  

9 comments:

Anonymous said...

El Torero is probably one of the better Mexican restaurants; however, they could never keep this one clean. Also, the interior has deteriorated.

Anonymous said...

Good. We have never had a good meal there, I tried it more than once and found it the most disgusting restaurant and food.

Anonymous said...

What will happen to the huge taxidermy collection of marinelife?

Anonymous said...

I am surprised it lasted this long. Went a few times and the service and the food were not good.

Anonymous said...

Not surprised. Sometimes I went there because it was easy. I never had to wait for a table. I always had my own little nook. It's hard to mess up chips and salsa, but beyond that the food was mediocre at best. You didn't really get a waiter- just someone who walked over and casually took your order. The inside was old and worn. Meanwhile over at La Parilla, there's not a single seat at the bar at 10pm on weekends and it's not uncommon to have a 40+ minute wait for a table. The food is great and the service is fast. The staff is consistent. Their birthday parade comes out a few times an hour. El Torrero's days have been numbered for a while. Thanks for the update as always.

andrewj4442 said...

Is this restaurant related to the El Toro mexican restaurant?
The Macias family owned El Toro at one time and from what I know family members split off and opened various mexican restaurants.

Anonymous said...

We went one time a few years ago and saw a live cockroach on the wall of the dining room. Amazed they stayed this long. Some people choose convenience over everything.

Anonymous said...

Not in the least bit surprised. As Emory employees we went there routinely for lunch. The past (and last) visits we encountered roaches on tables and walls. We notified our server and she asked us to leave. We did. And never went back.

Anonymous said...

I dislike La Parilla, primarily because they refuse to serve single patrons unless you sit at the bar, and if you sit at the bar, I've had bartenders hassle me for sitting there and not buying a drink. But I love El Torrero, I've been going to this location for nearly 20 years (although I prefer the P'Tree Industrial location). Some of the employees have been there since I started going, and I find some of the items unique (I LOVE the chicken) and portions generous. Too bad. Wonder how long some of the other "low rent" tenants (dollar store, consignment shop) will last in the new upscale center.