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Detroit Lakes eatery to offer Mexican food

Mayra Galvan, Ostadio Martinez, Victor Ramon Meza, Fernando Barradas and Abraham Herrera are part of the El Metate restaurant team that hopes to open in the old Beachfront location Dec. 1. (Brian Basham/DL Newspapers)

Detroit Lakes will be getting a new full-service Mexican restaurant soon -- perhaps as early as Dec. 1 -- as El Metate­ will open in the current Beachfront building on West Lake Drive.

Ostadio Martinez, owner of the new establishment, also owns El Tequila restaurants in Baxter and Fergus Falls, and a restaurant in Dothan, Ala. Martinez is also expanding into Crookston with an El Metate restaurant opening up sometime in December.

Martinez is partnering with two of his brothers-in-law on the venture.

Martinez signed the deal Tuesday and already has food orders arranged with Sysco.

His daughter, Mayra Galvan, will be helping out in Detroit Lakes and Crookston.

She said that about a month ago, Martinez was looking for a location in town with ABC Realty Realtor Gary Pieske.

They noticed that the Beachfront was closed and Pieske contacted the owner of the building, Great Plains Tower Properties based in Fargo, through a records search at the Becker County Courthouse. After a short period of negotiations, a deal was made.

The location right next to the lake, the only restaurant Martinez owns that is on a shore, attracted him to the site.

"It's beautiful," Galvan said. "We liked that it is right by the shore."

Galvan was speaking for the family, as Martinez's English skills are limited.

Not much needs to be done to the building to get it ready.

The inside décor suits the style of what Martinez and Galvan want.

The inside colors could be changed to more of an orange shade, Galvan said.

"We'll do something about it," she said.

With the initial food orders already made, the main chore is just to organize everything.

"We're going to be working hard," she said.

Galvan said El Metate would have over 100 items on the menu.

"We're going to have a lot of great Mexican food," she said. "We're going to have lots of variety."

And everything will be made fresh each morning.

"The rice, beans and everything else is made daily," Galvan said.

The bar will still be in place, with it taking on more of a Mexican feel.

"We're famous for our great margaritas and tequilas," Galvan said.

For the Martinez family, the business has grown quickly. The first restaurant in Baxter opened up last year.

This is Galvan's second year in Minnesota and she's still getting used to the cold.

"I'm so angry because I'm so cold," she said jokingly. "My children are not used to it still."

The Beachfront bar will be open this weekend, opening Friday at 4 p.m., and at noon on Saturday and Sunday.