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Authentic Mexican Food at Magaly's Bamba

Written By: Jennifer Buhler  |  Posted: Thursday, June 14th, 2012

Do you love Mexican food? Magaly's Bamba is a mobile restaurant that offers authentic Mexican food at an affordable price. This is not your average taco stand.

The Ortegas make their traditional foods just they way they did in their native country. The Ortega family moved to Eau Claire from Vera Cruz, Mexico over fifteen years ago in search of better job opportunities.

They purchased their mobile restaurant six years ago and started Magaly's Bamba (named after Magaly Ortega) to serve at festivals and fairs. Customers liked the food so much that they asked where they could find Magaly's Bamba at a regular location. This prompted the Ortegas to search for a permanent location to place their popular restaurant.

However, this was more easily said then done. "We were the first mobile stand in Eau Claire, so it made it kind of difficult for us," said Jose Ortega, owners Librato and Magaly's son. When asked about the difficulties the City government gave them, Jose stated,

"They (the city) asked for a lot of requirements in our trailer, things that, later on, people told us that we really didn't need." The city also required the Ortegas to find a private parking lot that was willing to host them. At first, Magaly's Bamba was on London Road near the Dollar Tree.

Now, the restaurant sits near the corner of Clairemont Avenue and Cameron Street. Magaly's Bamba offers many traditional Mexican dishes such as burritos, fajitas, tamales, sopes, tortas, and flautas. "There are a lot of Mexican restaurants in Eau Claire but this is more authentic. If you want something  really Mexican, this is where you'd come," says Jose.

The burrito bamba is their most popular dish featuring three types of meat together chicken, pork and beef. They also have their own line of custom-made salsas. The salsa is so delicious that two local grocery stores, Just Local Foods and Hahn's Market, have started to carry it.

Mobile restaurants are a wonderful entrepreneurial idea that allows the owner to put his store in a very strategic location and not require much space to service customers. Owners are also free to cater to special events like the various local music events or the Northern Wisconsin State Fair by simply moving their store.

The small building has much less upkeep than a traditional restaurant and this helps make their prices more competitive without sacrificin quality. Magaly's Bamba is a great little business with a good tasting product.

It would be wonderful to see more mobile restaurants popping up all over Eau Claire. Unfortunately, many people consider these small businesses as an eyesore and try to prevent them through ordinances and other means. Show your support for these innovative little restaurants by going to Magaly's Bamba. The quality food and fast service will make you a regular customer

Jennifer Buhler is a writer for the Eau Claire Journal. She is a homeschooler and a mother of seven children. She lives with her husband in Augusta.

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