From Homegrown to Well-known: Taco Mayo

By on April 13, 2011

Local Eateries Finding Success Beyond Our Borders

We thought it would be fun to look at some Oklahoma restaurants that not only are thriving, but have expanded regionally and, in some cases, nationally with their chain.

Although many are very unique and different in their business approach, they all share the common ground that they all started in Oklahoma.

The big plus for us is the huge impact they’ve had on our local economy. They’re obviously doing something right and have found the right mix of efficiency in their business model and wide consumer appeal with their food.

This week we want to spotlight Taco Mayo, a local fast food favorite that has cultivated a loyal following with their Tex-Mex deliciousity (is that a word?).

Believe it or not, the brand was actually started way back in 1978 in Norman, Oklahoma and derived its name from the fact it began in the month of May. Get it… Mayo? Ok, no points for creativity here. But, no one can dare deny the incredible success record of this innovative eatery.

Taco Mayo was the brain child of some very experienced food execs back in the day. The owners were looking to fill the void for delicious Tex-Mex food in the region with a restaurant that featured good food, good atmosphere and super fast service. What they came up with was a concept that was totally unique for its time and steeped in a plethora of Tex-Mex cooking know-how.
By 1980, Taco Mayo was a booming enterprise. So much so, they decided to franchise their chain and expand regionally with their brand. The concept has since grown from a single store in Norman to regional franchise locations in several states with thriving franchise sales each month.

The chain has even helped give Oklahoma a reputation of sorts for being a test kitchen for national expansion of franchises. It seems we’re a good gauge for how others around the country will respond to new kinds of food and restaurant ideas.

Thank you Taco Mayo for putting us on the map. Oh, by the way… if you get a chance, check out Taco Mayo’s recent TV and radio ads. They’re very funny and have won some top honors for being downright cheeky.

Come back next week and we’ll take a look at the success of Camille’s Sidewalk Café and their explosion onto the national scene. See you then.

Taco Mayo on Urbanspoon

Brian M

About Brian M was founded in 2008, by Brian M out of a shared love of good food. What started as a blog where normal everyday people dined out and posted about their experiences has grown into a full scale food publication with professional chefs, writers, and photographers, each with a unique culinary and educational background to pull from. Today is Oklahoma's #1 online food publication.