JAMES CITY-Taqueria Maria Bonita, a popular Mexican restaurant in Greater Williamsburg, is expanding and will soon open a third establishment within the coming weeks.
The new restaurant, Maria Bonita Cantina, is opening at the corner of Olde Towne Road and Richmond Road in the space that was formerly occupied by the Edwards Ham Shop. The owners are finalizing paperwork before they officially open, which they anticipate will be at the end of June or early July.
Guadalupe Arreola, who lived in Mexico City for more than a decade, and her mother opened Taqueria Maria Bonita’s first location in 2018 in the Victory Village Shopping Center on Mooretown Road. The restaurant also has a second location on York Street in Williamsburg. Taqueria Maria Bonita specializes in authentic Mexican cuisine.
The new establishment will focus more on libations, Kyle Thomas, Taqueria Maria Bonita’s head chef and manager, said in a phone interview on Tuesday, June 21.
“Cantina means bar in Mexico, so we’ll be featuring more tequilas, more mezcal, more authentic drinks,” Thomas said. “Maria Bonita Cantina will have that same atmosphere as different bars in the area, we’ll just be putting our own twist on it.”
Since its inception, Taqueria Maria Bonita has developed quite the following for locals, and Thomas hopes the opening of its newest location will satisfy its customers who won’t have to travel as far to the other two locations.
“We are doing this for our customers,” Thomas said. “We are just trying to bring a bit of Mexico here to Williamsburg.”
Maria Bonita Cantina is located at 5541C Richmond Rd. For updates on its opening, visit the Taqueria Maria Bonita Facebook page.