Longtime Mexican restaurant in Yuma closes after 83 years

La Fonda Mexican Food and Tortilla Factory is shutting its doors after 83 years. The restaurant is known for its tortilla soup and fresh tamale dough.
Published: Oct. 2, 2023 at 4:39 PM MST
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YUMA, AZ (3TV/CBS 5) For over 80 years, the La Fonda Mexican Food and Tortilla Factory has served the Yuma community. But on Saturday, they served their last patrons. The Mexican restaurant, famously known for its tortilla soup and fresh tamale dough, shut its doors after 83 years.

“I’m wearing my dad’s hat; I need to have a piece of him with me,” said Franchesca Ramos, one of La Fonda’s managers. Her dad, Frank Ramos, started working at La Fonda when he was just 14 years old. He had a dream of one day buying the restaurant, and he reached that dream when he and his wife, Connie, purchased the restaurant in 1982. The Ramos family has made La Fonda what it is today, but after 41 years of dedicating their life to the restaurant, it’s time to say farewell.

Ramos said Connie was recently diagnosed with severe dementia. Although it’s a difficult decision, they’re now stepping away from the restaurant to focus on family. However, they’re hoping a dreamer just like their dad will purchase the restaurant and continue the legacy. “It’s just a lot of mixed emotions, but I really have hope and faith that someone will come forward and someone will continue to carry the torch. I truly hope that happens,” Ramos said.

The Ramos family thanks their loyal patrons and employees who stuck by them throughout the years. La Fonda has received an outpouring of love from the community up to the restaurant’s last day open, which was Saturday. “They showed a great amount of love and loyalty to my family. I appreciate that,” Ramos said. “They completely understand why we have to do what we have to do and are fully supportive. Our community it’s an amazing community that we have.”

The restaurant announced through its Facebook page that it would sell tamale dough one last time on Monday. A line of longtime patrons could be seen in front of the restaurant on Monday, waiting to get their hands on some tamale dough.

Ramos says they’ve received a lot of requests for the dough and might make one last batch in the coming days. She said the announcement would be made through the restaurant’s Facebook page.

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