La Fonda, still in its original location since 1940, was established by the Hurtado Family. Severo Hurtado, originally from Phoenix, was exposed to the Mexican Food business from an early age his parents owned a Tamale Factory, and it is from this that he gained his experience as well as his knowledge for the food industry . After his marriage to Gloria , the Hurtados relocated to Yuma and opened a tortilla and tamale factory at 1095 S 3rd Ave.
La Fonda later expanded to include a deli, selling: burritos, tacos, tamales and other fine Mexican Food Products over the counter.
Upon Mr Hurtado’s death in 1973, the business was carried on for several years by his wife Gloria, however in 1982 she later sold the business to Frank and Connie Ramos.
Frank Ramos began working at La Fonda alongside Mr. Hurtado at an early age of 14. Every day after school Frank would report to work and very quickly Mr Hurtado recognized the potential he saw in the young man from the local neighborhood. Time went by, Frank was given more and more responsibilities such as knowledge regarding recipes. However upon graduating high school Frank chose a different career path to follow only to return to the restaurant business years later.
Frank along with his wife, Connie purchased La Fonda in 1982 and thus began the redesigning of the restaurant you now see today. Together they took a deli and transformed it into the full-fledged restaurant still offering to the public over the counter to go items but also adding a flair that was lacking. Keeping the corn tortilla factory that he worked in as a young boy, Frank continued making corn tortillas the traditional way. Cooking the corn in a 400 lb corn cookers, stone grinding the corn and thereafter making the masa ( grinded corn ) into La Fonda’s famous corn tortillas. The corn tortilla being a main staple of the menu from using them for chips, tacos, enchiladas also the masa used for the tamales.
Frank and Connie decided early on they would only use the finest ingredients for their recipes and never purchase pre made food items and because of that commitment La Fonda is known for food items such as their Pollo Asado, Sonora Beef Rolled Tacos, Tamales made with canola oil, Stone Ground Chile sauce. They built a reputation of serving the healthiest Mexican food at the highest quality, catering to the business community in Yuma. La Fonda became famous for their luncheon specials Monday thru Friday. Today a person can find a Luncheon Special Menu being used daily along with many of the items that were mentioned above including more recent items such as the famous Tortilla Soup and Grilled Chipotle Fish Tacos.
Unfortunately Frank passed in 2002, his wife Connie and his two children continued leading the business. Continuing with the same high standard that Frank had set forth so many years before La Fonda continues living up to the expectations of their customers. Connie along with her son and daughter have continued the legacy that was started by Mr. Hurtado , refined by Frank and is now enhanced on a daily basis. Today La Fonda still has the original corn tortilla factory, still makes tamales with the fresh ground corn, still chooses to use canola oil instead of lard, still only uses the finest ingredients and never uses pre made food products. La Fonda not only continues as a full –fledge restaurant, producing cooked and uncooked food items to go, but recently offers catering options to their customers.
Customers often ask for the definition of the word ‘Fonda’. Fonda means “an inn with a relaxed atmosphere where relatives and friends can gather and eat”. The Ramos Family thinks you’ll agree the name is appropriate for the business that has been proudly serving Yuma for over seventy years adding to the history and culture of the city.