Between buying bags of tortilla chips and eating a tamale in the El Rey cafe, I tracked down co-owner Ernesto Villarreal and asked him about the future of his chain of grocery stores.
Villarreal confirmed that his smallest supermercado, located at 1023 S. Cesar E. Chavez Dr., will close at the end of February or early March.
"It depends on how quickly we sell our stock," he says.
The 35-year-old grocery store is closing because it's located across the street from the mega-sized El Rey, 916 S. Cesar E. Chavez Dr., which opened in 2007.
"We have been planning to do this for a while," says Villarreal.
Villarreal also confirmed that a new El Rey grocery store will open in about six weeks on the corner of 51st Street and Oklahoma Avenue. The new store is about the same size as the other large-scale market, and will eventually feature a cafe.