Eatbeat: Mexican restaurant rightly gains lively following

Marilyn Hagerty

You are greeted by the likeness of five life-size Mexican musicians and a sign that says “Open” outside Charras and Tequila.

That’s the Mexican restaurant on Highway 2 in Devils Lake. And four of us who made the 100-mile drive to get there on U.S. Highway 2 went away feeling it was well worth it.

House specials include a trio shrimp dish served with Spanish rice, lettuce, pico de gallo and guacamole for $19. We agreed with Ann Porter when she said it was “nice.” Bonnie Cameron was first to discover how nice the unusual low-slung coffee cups felt on cold hands. Before long, Susie Shaft and Ann Porter joined in. We all were enjoying that warmth after coming in from brisk weather.

The Mexican restaurant has gained a lively following in the couple of years since it opened. The food is good. The menu is varied and interesting.

And you get a welcome from statues of five life-size Mexican musicians standing outside the door. Once inside, the welcome is unusually warm. Waiters are friendly and helpful. There’s a choice of booths and seating areas.


The restaurant is bright and colorful. There is seating at a bar and in nearby tables. Beyond the lounge area, there are more tables in a dining area. The place seems alive with its Mexican music and the lively welcome from staff members.

Somehow, the chunky Mexican hot sauce seems especially inviting on cool days.

Still, the menu seems endless with special dishes, including flautas, chipotle pork chops and chimichanga. There are combination dishes and vegetarian choices along with a la carte. There are dishes for children 12 and younger.

. . . And there is dessert. The restaurant, for $6, serves fried ice cream, flan, sopapilla and churros.

Anna Quinonez has been an owner-manager since the restaurant opened two years ago. She transferred over from a similar restaurant, which has become very popular in Bemidji. And she said there is another Mi Rancho Mexican restaurant in Bismarck.

Charras and Tequila

What: Authentic Mexican restaurant

Where: 210 Highway 2 West, Suite 6, in Devils Lake


Hours: 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. with 10 p.m. closing Friday and Saturday

Owner-manager: Anna Quinonez

Head cook: Jesus Q

Reservations: (701) 662-3030

Seating: 116

Report card: A brightly decorated Mexican restaurant with unusually pleasant welcome and convenient parking. Wide variety of inviting choices. Menu with pictures is easy to read. Good restroom facilities a plus.

Reach Marilyn Hagerty at or by telephone at (701) 772-1055.

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