With Love from Las Vegas: Roberto’s Taco Shop, six Decades of Good Food and Gives Back to the communityabril 4, 2023
In 1964, Roberto Robledo began a small tortilla factory in San Ysidro, California. 58 years later, what’s now known as Roberto’s Taco Shop has over 70 locations, a majority of which are in Nevada, with a full menu of traditionally and authentically Mexican dishes. After his passing in 1999, Roberto’s son Reynaldo Robledo was given the responsibility of running the family business in Nevada and continue growing the family business. Since carrying on his father’s legacy, Rey has expanded and taken the franchise to a whole new level. Starting at age 12, Rey learned his family’s work ethic and dedication to customer satisfaction and quality ingredients. “I think the success of Roberto’s is that every location does their cooking at the restaurant. So we don’t bring anything made from outside, with the exceptions of tamales…but everything is done in the restaurant, fresh, daily, multiple times a day. What I mean by that is, you know, a restaurant could cook rice 6-7 times in one day,” Rey said. Though following in his family’s footsteps, Rey has had to adapt to ever-changing circumstances and continue to uphold the success of the company. When COVID-19 hit and countless businesses struggled with staying afloat and creating new protocols, Rey and his team were working tirelessly to keep up constant communication with their franchisees, many of whom are Hispanic and struggle with fluency in English. Even without the added struggle of a global pandemic, there are many new obstacles and priorities that arise as the franchise continues to expand and they work to maintain its original concept and traditions.
“It’s keeping up with the times also, you know. It’s different. Than it was 60 years ago,” Rey said. “When my dad started, my dad didn’t need much money to open a restaurant, he would always take over restaurants and basically just change the name on it to Roberto’s without doing any construction or anything like that. That’s where I work a little bit different. I spend quite a bit of money to open up a new restaurant, and that’s where I’m a little bit different from my father.” Roberto’s Taco Shop started as a family business, and it continues to be family run. This devotion to family and community is built in, and Rey always remembers this when committing to giving back. For 18 years, Rey has been sending a monthly check to the Las Vegas Rescue Mission to assist the homeless, and currently gives out 10 scholarships a year through Nevada College and Project 150, a nonprofit organization for disadvantaged high school students. They work closely with the Make-A-Wish Foundation and most recently sponsored a gala for the U.S. Vets of Las Vegas. Rey’s Director of operation, Blanca Escoto, speaks to Rey’s humility and pride when it comes to his community. “We get so many requests for sponsorships here at the office and sometimes I’m so busy and he still says ‘Let’s do it, let’s do it’ and I value that in him. We give back to our schools, our teachers… or our first responders like the Police Department, firemen, whatever they have going on, they request a sponsorship, we’re there,” Escoto said. The core value of Roberto’s Taco Shop is always its customers and community, according to Rey. For himself, and for his franchisees that are continually trained, patience and customer service are the most important things to instill and will continue to be the main focus as the company looks forward and keeps growing. “Without our customers, we wouldn’t be anywhere.”.