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First News Fall 2008

Back to the Beginning

   You could say Nanda Ranes was born into the restaurant business. He spent his late teen years helping out in the kitchen with his mother, Pat McMahon, when she built and opened her first restaurant at 220 South Main Street in La Veta. With his natural given talents and a passion to pursue a career in the food service industry, Ranes left the area to attend and graduate from the Culinary Institute of America in Hyde Park, New York.

   Nanda has now returned! Not only has he returned to the area, but he has returned to the exact address where it all began over 25 years ago. Located in the courtyard of the adobe complex that is now also home to Capture Colorado, Nanda Ghan's Cantina is serving up fresh, traditional Mexican food, red and green chile, home-made pies and specialty flans. The Tequila Sunrise flan, made with Patron Tequila and Grande Marnier is fast becoming a "must have" item, but the Chocolate Espresso flan is quickly becoming a strong second choice.
   Nanda could not have opened the doors to the restaurant on 4th of July weekend without help from his family who owns and operates McMahon Construction. Brother Jimi Chambers jumped in to help with design challenges and everything else from framing to tile work. Mother Pat McMahon and step-father Random Factor all shared the vision and the work load that turned the abandoned office space into a cozy cantina. Nanda kept the honors of designing his own kitchen and workspace.

   And now, another Ranes has emerged, Nanda’s five year old son Gavin has already carved out a spot for himself with a lemonade and fruit skewer stand inside the plaza area. Gavin's hospitable personality clearly demonstrates he's destined to follow in the family tradition. Nanda Ghan's Cantina is a great place to gather, and you'll be pleased to know catering services are available; and remember, they'd love to cater your company Christmas party with any cuisine request. Next spring, Nanda will expand the menu to feature some favorites from Pat McMahon's Fine Art and Café, where Nanda served as executive chef. Nanda Ghan's Mexican Cantina is open Tuesday-Saturday; 11 a.m. to 8 p.m.

Nanda Ghan's
Mexican Cantina
220 S. Main Street
La Veta, CO  81055
(719) 742-3100

Newsletter photography by Michael Babnick Photography

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