By: Christopher Davis | Category: Restaurants | Issue: October 2013
Manager Chantal Vidal and Saul Magana, owner of El Maguey.
In the eight years since opening their doors at 1954 S. Hwy. 66, El Maguey has earned a reputation for having some of the absolute best Mexican food in Claremore. After a recent addition to their dining hall, they are now expanding their menu as well, to welcome an increasingly diverse range of customers.
El Maguey’s approach to success is simple: they offer a squeaky clean restaurant and smiling service from a staff that makes an extra effort to please and serves sizzling hot food that tastes great. Their authentic flavor is attained by using quality, fresh ingredients. Now they hope to bring the same great taste to an even larger spectrum of customers with unique dietary concerns.
“We are making an effort to cater to special diets,” explains restaurant manager Chantal Vidal. Ms. Vidal has been with the restaurant since they opened their doors and has noticed the growing trend of specialized diets. Vidal says they get more and more special orders and requests for vegetarian and gluten-free meals.
“Sometimes people have the impression that Mexican food is not healthy,” acknowledges Vidal. “We want to show people that is not the case.” While many folks with special diets find themselves choosing between taking a cheat day and skipping dinner out, it is refreshing to see a restaurant known for its authentic Mexican food that is willing to adapt with the times. With vegetarian, low-carb and gluten-free diets gaining popularity, it is understandable when restaurants choose to keep things simple. After all, how can a restaurant please everyone?
El Maguey’s is willing to take a shot at it, and they believe Mexican food can offer something for everybody. “We want to please our customers,” says Vidal. “We try our best to serve what they want.” And the restaurant puts their menu where their mouth is. Vidal explains that, while they have always been willing to make substitutions to suit customers, they have taken several big steps to ensure they can please some of the more significant requests. “We have a separate fryer now for gluten-free items,” she says. Anyone who eats strictly gluten-free will recognize how important this is. “We have also added more salads and vegetarian options,” she says. She encourages customers to try their new vegetarian quesadilla, or they can request their favorite meal “sin carne” (without meat).
“We want customers to be comfortable when they arrive and satisfied when they leave,” says Vidal. Regulars who love the food that El Maguey is best known for should not worry, however. All of your favorite menu items, like the chile relleno and their signature pollo loco, remain on the menu and will be as tasty as ever. Other items that El Maguey is known for include homemade chips, several different kinds of salsa and grilled fajitas. There is also a great kids’ menu, featuring niño-sized portions of traditional entrees, as well as chicken tenders, corn dogs and French fries.
The restaurant’s recent expansion means they can handle large groups and parties more readily, and they also cater. As always, carryout is available, whether you call ahead or drop by on the way home from work. With a full bar selection, feel free to order a margarita or a beer. El Maguey prides itself on its family-friendly atmosphere. With the recent menu and dining additions, there is sure to be room at the table for your entire family or party, no matter their preferences or needs.
Christopher Davis is an educator and musician, as well as a writer. A California native, he resides in Tulsa with his wife, two sons and a modest menagerie of pets. When he isn't inspiring young minds, you will most likely find him spending time with his family or playing drums and percussion with Project Huckleberry or the Movetet. In addition to Value News, Davis also writes for Currentland. You can view his work at https://seedavis.wordpress.com.