A La Mexicana eyeing new Bridgton location

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RAYMOND — As work continues on the project to get A La Mexicana back into a full-time home in Raymond, the Mexican restaurant’s owner is looking to open an additional location in Bridgton.

Jose Chavez, whose Raymond restaurant was demolished after a kitchen fire last April, has for months been operating a food trailer in the parking lot of the original location.

“It’s not a complaint – it’s good,” Chavez said about working out of the trailer. “But it’s way different than it used to be”

Laurie Mason, who owns the A La Mexicana property and has described Chavez as more like family rather than a tenant, says the plan is for A La Mexicana to eventually move into a prefabricated diner that has already been installed on the original property along Route 302 in Raymond.

While Mason and Chavez had originally hoped to have the diner project completed earlier this winter, Mason said that the weather has not cooperated.

“We’re working on it – it’s been one of those winters, you know?” Mason said last week. “We’re looking forward to getting it back.”

Mason said that work is still being done to connect the diner to power and water, and that the goal is to have the restaurant open in time for Cinco de Mayo.

“I hope so too, yeah,” Chavez echoed about the timing in a separate interview.

Chavez said last week that in addition to reopening the Raymond location, he now has plans to open an additional location on Route 302 in Bridgton in the building that was formerly home to Flannigan’s Roast Beef and Tavern.

Chavez is planning the same Mexican cuisine for the Bridgton menu that customers have come to expect in Raymond.

“Same menu, the same things,” Chavez said. He hopes to have the Bridgton location open in the next two to three weeks.

Bridgton Code Enforcement Officer Robert Baker said that A La Mexicana is currently in the process of securing the necessary town licenses and permits.

“Man, I feel great,” Chavez said about the prospect of being back in a brick and mortar location.

Last spring, after the fire, the community rallied around Chavez and his employees for a Cinco de Mayo fundraiser that organizers said brought in more than $10,000.

Matt Junker can be reached at 781-3661 ext. 123 or mjunker@theforecaster.net. Follow him on Twitter: @MattJunker.

A La Mexicana owner Jose Chavez, whose restaurant burned down last year, hopes to be re-opened in a new diner at the original location by Cinco de Mayo. He is also planning an additional location in Bridgton.

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