New restaurant featuring authentic Mexican food to open in Springfield

Mariscos Cinco de Mayo, a new Mexican restaurant, is coming soon to Springfield.

The restaurant, offering authentic Mexican food, will be located at 1236 Upper Valley Pike.

“We’re still not sure of the opening date. Our tentative open date is May 2, that’s our plan, but we’re still waiting to do health inspections and the building inspection,” said co-owner Sandra Casillas.

The process of opening a restaurant hasn’t been easy due to COVID-19, although Casillas said she and her husband Francisco Casillas decided it was time to do it anyway.

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“It has been a little bit stressful. We thought that maybe with our jobs closing down, it would be easier to work on our business. Restaurants were some of the most affected by the pandemic, but were still able to do it, through things like carry-out. We said, ‘Okay, our jobs are low, we might get laid off, so let’s start thinking about our own business, let’s go ahead and open a restaurant,’” Sandra Casillas said.

The Casillas have both worked in the restaurant business for most of their lives. Francisco Casillas has been a head cook since 2010, with both of them currently still running a Mexican restaurant in Illinois.

Sandra Casillas had previously lived in Springfield for 15 years and is a graduate Northwestern High School.

The couple strong ties with their families’ origins in Mexico.

“Mariscos” translates from Spanish to English, meaning, “seafood.”

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“The name kind of gives it away, we will be serving ‘mariscos,’ which is seafood in Spanish. We are planning on having Tex-Mex as well. Basically, our menu will have a little of everything for everyone. So, we are going to have some American dishes, like hamburgers,” she said.

The restaurant’s specialty will be authentic Mexican food.

“We’re going to have authentic tacos, like ‘al pastor’ and things like that. Our main focus will be ‘mariscos,’ the seafood, and the tacos,” Sandra Casillas said.

In addition to bringing something new to the Springfield community, she hopes to fill a specific need for the Hispanic community as well.

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“Mariscos is very popular in the Hispanic community. I’ve heard so many friends say they have to travel to Dayton or Columbus or a whole hour away to get a good dish of mariscos,” she said.

The restaurant will provide Clark County residents an option close to home.

“Our dishes go beyond what is consumed like regular tacos and burritos. We offer more tropical, from the coast dishes known as the Mariscos Nayarit style. If you are not into seafood, our menu will provide authentic Mexican tacos, I haven’t known anyone who doesn’t like tacos,” Sandra Casillas said.

The Casillas’ hope is to provide an authentic Mexican food experience for locals.

“Our goal is for people to maybe try something different, and also we’re trying to provide something more authentic than Tex-Mex. Our focus is to just be authentic,” Sandra Casillas said.

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