At Vallarta's Restaurant, Macho Nuñez serves guests, from left, Betty McIntyre and Nancy Foster celebrating Mary Morris's birthday — on right.

Photo by Erin Fenner

At Vallarta's Restaurant, Macho Nuñez serves guests, from left, Betty McIntyre and Nancy Foster celebrating Mary Morris's birthday — on right.

Vallarta's provides Moffat County's best Mexican food with a heart

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Seven years ago, four brothers — Roy, Mario, Pepe and Cubas Nuñez — combined their respective knowledge, skills and mother’s recipes to start their own business in Craig: Vallarta's Restaurant.

Since then, the whole family — 10 siblings in all — has pitched in to some degree to make the restaurant a success.

The restaurant serves food, but their priority is to be a part of the community.

They regularly host fundraisers for families down on their luck. The Craig Chamber of Commerce awarded the restaurant the Large Business of the Year award in 2013 for their community service and quality business, said executive director of the chamber, Chris Oxley.

"People who patronize their business find their service (is) consistently strong, their quality consistently good and — on top of that — they are really engaged in the community and supportive of the community," she said.

Marycarmen Nuñez, one of the Nuñez sisters who works at the family restaurant, said that philanthropy was in part inspired by the giving nature of their family and the charitable spirit of Craig itself.

“We want to help the community and the people who need help (in) some way,” she said.

The Nuñezes always help one of their own, and they apply that attitude toward their town. Cubas Nuñez said he couldn’t think of any other way to be a part of the community.

We’re “leaving every door open,” he said.

That’s the approach they take to running their business as well.

Cubas Nuñez said he and his brothers wanted the atmosphere of the restaurant to feel like home.

“We want (customers) to feel very welcome,” he said. “We don’t look at them as customers, but as a friend.”

They pulled their menu together with family zeal as well.

“A lot of (menu) ideas were from places we worked, then we put together our own recipes and a lot of them area our mom’s recipes,” Cubas Nuñez said.

They make an effort to pull together the best meals for their community and worked hard to get here, he said.

“Me and three more brothers invested in here. We all worked at different places,” he said. “We started from the bottom, all of us.”

Contact Erin Fenner at 970-875-1794 or efenner@craigdailypress.com.

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