Carlos Barrios and his daughter Betty.

Bring on the margaritas! Carlos Barrios and his daughters, Betty and Luna, said Tuesday that the restaurant has passed all its building inspections and is now awaiting clearance from the Health Department.

They expect to be open at the end of February. We’ve written about the Mission’s go-to place for late night Mexican food, its long Mission run and its closure in 2007.

La Rondalla owner Carlos Barrios was in his early 30s when he took over his parents’ restaurant in the late 1980s to run it for 20 years. If things go as planned this fall, he’ll hand the management over to his two daughters. Already, he’s transferred the ownership to their names.

“I’m not going to be around forever,” said Barrios who recently suffered a seizure. Although he wants to be involved in the restaurant as much as possible, doctors have told him to take it easy so it will be Betty Barrios, 25, and her 23-year-old sister Luna who take over. They hope to have the restaurant open by late November or early December.

Between now and then, there’s plenty to do. READ MORE.

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Founder/Executive Editor. I’ve been a Mission resident since 1998 and a professor emeritus at Berkeley’s J-school since 2019 when I retired. I got my start in newspapers at the Albuquerque Tribune in the city where I was born and raised. Like many local news outlets, The Tribune no longer exists. I left daily newspapers after working at The New York Times for the business, foreign and city desks. Lucky for all of us, it is still there.

As an old friend once pointed out, local has long been in my bones. My Master’s Project at Columbia, later published in New York Magazine, was on New York City’s experiment in community boards.

Right now I'm trying to figure out how you make that long-held interest in local news sustainable. The answer continues to elude me.

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  1. All they need to do is serve food on par with Puerto Alegre and they have a freaking goldmine in that location

    There is a huge demand for cheap old fashion Tex-mex food in the area with cheap margaritas and passable gut-sticking food. I love it too sometimes. White people and most Mexican Americans like that sort of Mexican food

    And nasty is nasty. My mom grew up around the way from that place and my Dad and uncles were around that area back in the day. All agree the food used to be nasty and you were just there to drink.

    1. Bro, what’s the big deal? There already are a shit-ton of existing tacquerias that fit that bill to a T. Cheap, filling, and you don’t have to pay for eeffing table service! I have a love/hate affair with el farolito that way. When they’re on, it’s the best deal evah. But too often they just slap the shit together, something is off in flavor, etc. Then I swear them off, make the rounds at all the other tacquerias, and inevitably come back to farolito. Plus, the people watching there is usually top notch! Me love me some mission!

      1. You may trash it all you like. Call them every dirty name in the book. Spit all your racist and white privalge remarks. The fact is they have survived many decades, they own the hold corner building, his daughters are taking over the business, have made great upgrades. The place for decades was packed and will be very successful again. Get over it!

          1. LOL, so first you claim it is racist to dislike a Mexican restaurant and, when it is pointed out to you that that is ridiculous, you claim that is racist too?

            A much better explanation. You accuse people of racism regardless of whether it is there or not.

            As a LL, I have had many opportunities to discriminate by race and I never have. I would, however, discriminate against someone who was an evidence card player, because I would regard them as having no integrity or decency or honesty.

  2. I met my husband in La Rondalla 17 years ago! The food may suck, but it will always be special in my heart.

  3. Ha I love the folks who went to La Rondalla for the food?…please continue to stay away when it reopens I hear there’s a nice clean taco spot on Clement ! ;-0

  4. The decor was awesome. The drinks were awesome. And honestly, the “hood” doesnt need another HogNrocksNFlourNWaterNFigNDandelionYUMYUM$30RamenShop. The neighborhood needs a place where many feel welcome, can eat food and enjoy Valencia Street along with all the Zombies walking around with their eyeballs strapped to their smartphones. Fuck exclusivity and fuck those retarded stars. Go hack a State Bird Provisions reservation already.

    1. Ummm…Ramen is only $15.

      And as for crappy over priced Mexican food for douchie white guys, we already have Puerto Allegro for that.

      1. Do you have any idea how long Puerto Allegre has been there, and what it means to Mission?

        Since when do you have a problem with pasty techie douche bros, bro?

        1. A- who cares how long it’s been there.

          B- dude, only douchie bridge and tunnel (I didn’t say techie btw) frat kids go there to get drunk. Sheeet, that was even the case in the 90’s!

          You don’t actually go there, do you? Yikes!

        2. “what it means to the mission”

          I’m going to take a wild guess and assume you could easily star in the show Hoarders

      2. Puerto Allegro doesn’t seem overpriced to me for having table service and being sit down. Mexican Americans eat there too

    2. unhygienic and bad food is not good for anyone. I agree the hood needs another place like puerto alegre though and not another high end spot

  5. Clearly these guys are struggling with the old third world vs new first world mission. As I said, if they didn’t own the bldg their asses woulda been outta here a long time ago. This is a prime example where a good education makes a big difference. Sorry for the tough love, but these guys need it.

  6. Good luck to them. Maybe this time around the owners will be successful. Before the place didn’t even rate 1 star; it was pretty lousy. Hopefully, this time around the bathrooms will be kept clean; they were always filthy, garbage strewn. I wonder if the building inspectors checked out the rest of the building; looks pretty rundown, blighted, & probably a lot of things never done to code.

  7. Most longtime Mission residents know that you don’t go to La Rondalla for the food, just the drinks and (maybe) chips and guacamole…and the funky old school decor.

    Not rocket science.

    1. If John, poorass, Pamela, Bob and the rest of the Landlord/used-house salesperson contingent don’t like it, here’s a clue: you don’t have to eat there.They were almost always busy, and surely won’t miss your hostility, classissm, and not-so-subtle racism.

      There are plenty of douche-centric eateries in the hood. Maybe you should eat there instead of being so hostile and negative to this long-time Mission fixture..

        1. poor.ass.millonaire you are are such a coward that nor even show who you are- Like they say – if you don’t like get going somewhere else. you sound like a racist pig.
          I had a great time- it had its ambiance and for that people came from far distance.
          I hope to see it running again.

  8. No offense, but this family represents the epitome of inefficiency, and intellectual laziness. I’m actually beginning to think that the tamale lady may be one up on these bozos, albeit with the exaggerated help of supervisor Crapos and his minions.

    First off, I was around when the original restaurant was around- besides being a cheapo margerita place for genX pre-hipsters, the food was crap, and the place looked dumpy and dirty. Just lazy.

    Then they get shut down. And….wait for it…they can’t get their shit together for 7 years!

    I will give credit in one way: I’m quite sure that Carlos, as incompetent as he has been, was at least smart enough to buy the building (or someone in la familia did.). Otherwise no chance in hell these guys would be paying rent for 84 months sans restaurant!

    So good going there. But please, stop trying to cut corners with cheap-dumb contractors and get your prime location ‘strant open again. And while you’re at it, hire a decent chef to make some clean, fresh and interesting food. We don’t need another totally average/forgettable Mexican restaurant in the hood. Thanks.

    1. Yeah, people went there for the cheap drinks. I recall SFWeekly doing a study of the city’s margaritas and La Rondalla had the highest alcohol count per dollar of any place.

      But yeah, the food was nasty, the ambiance non-existent, the service was the pits and the decor made you gag. You went there for one reason and one reason only – to get wasted for the lowest price.

      1. How can you say the food was nasty…I mean…you got a free side of cockroach with your meal! Sometimes, if they forgot to include it on your plate, they would simply run up your leg and onto the table. Such service!

    2. poor.ass has a special request for reclaimed wood, Edison bulbs, tea candles, and artisanal refried beans.

      poor.ass.also requests no idiosyncratic low-budget atmosphere, such as Christmas lights and the proprietor’s fishing trophy photos.

      poor.ass hopes it will look like every other cliche yup joint on Valencia.

      God forbid they make food that non-googles/non-landlords can afford.

      1. “poor.ass.also requests no idiosyncratic low-budget atmosphere, such as Christmas lights and the proprietor’s fishing trophy photos.”

        Unless they’re being ironic, of course.

    3. Go back to the crummy city you came from, we don’t need you here. Take your shiitake mushrooms and your artisan curated BS with you too. Better yet, there’s a Mickey D’s in the ‘burbs you can stuff your face at and not have to worry. and you can insult people there too and really put that white privilege to use! LOL!