By Joshua Maloni
Michael Hibbard’s original Gallo restaurant site recently reopened as Gallo Loco, serving almost a dozen different types of taco (torta or bowl), plus fajitas, quesadillas, queso nachos and salads. The interior design features an assortment of bright colors – reds, greens and oranges, among them – as well as the signature carved-metal Gallo roosters.
Gallo group head chef Douglas Herrick said, “We felt it was something that was missing from the area, and the style of Mexican we did was a fresher, quick approach than traditional Mexican dishes. We wanted to focus more on the quick serve, street taco aspect of it.”
Instead of a large menu found in similar dining rooms, “Our primary focus is tacos,” Herrick said. “We do a variety of street tacos, from carne asada, carnitas, fish tacos with fresh Mahi, fried shrimp. So, all of them are kind of unique to the way they're prepared. Instead of doing one style with different meats, each one is kind of its own thing. And then we offer a few other things, the quesadillas and fajitas, but again with those same kind of proteins in mind.”
Customers order off the menu as they enter the building. Food is brought to their table or to the bar – wherever they’re seated.
In a week and change since the eatery opened, “The feedback has been good,” Herrick said. “People have been enjoying the food. The food's been great, tastes great, looks great. Margaritas are phenomenal here, so that's been a big draw.”
Gallo Coal Fire Kitchen opened at 800 Center in 2016 with a focus on pizza, steaks and salads. That concept is moving down the street to Hibbard’s third Lewiston location, at the corner of North Fourth Street. This restaurant – and its adjoining, take-it-and-go Pronto by Gallo– will open this summer.
Hibbard’s second establishment, Gather by Gallo, opened last March at 453 Center St.
Gallo Loco is open from 4-9 p.m. Monday through Saturday. For more information, call 716-246-2228 or visit www.gallorestaurants.com.