Don Chilito’s is closing after 50 years

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Don Chilito’s Mexican Restaurant

After 50 years on Johnson Drive, Don Chilito’s is closing. Barry Cowden, the second-generation owner, said he is ready to retire but will miss all of the customers he’s had the opportunity to serve. 

“[I love] the legacy and all of the great customers and friends who have made Don Chilito’s what it is. We have 3rd and 4th generation customers and the stories they tell always inspired us,” says Cowden. 

The Mission restaurant became a community staple since its opening in 1971. Beyond the food and the famous smothered burritos, the staff’s relationship with the long-time and new customers alike was notable. 

“My father, Bill Cowden, opened Don Chilito’s in this location in 1971, and our family has been proud to serve this community with fresh Mexican food for five decades,” says Cowden. “It’s been a great ride and we want to thank all of the dedicated employees who have been a part of our success, as well as our many great supplier partners. Above all, we would like to celebrate the friendships we have enjoyed with our thousands of loyal Don Chilito’s customers.”  

Don Chilito’s will remain open until December 11. After that, the fate of the restaurant is unclear, but Cowden says “the future is wide open.”

Categories: Food & Drink