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Food & Drink

‘Super friendly’ Castro Mexican restaurant closes. Has a new eatery swooped in already?

Mexican restaurant "El Tucán" with a colorful sign, chili pepper decor, and a green awning under a sunny sky.
A Tacos El Tucan banner hangs over the shuttered Bonita Taqueria Y Rotisserie at the corner of 16th and Market streets on Monday. | Source: George Kelly/The Standard

Another restaurant has closed in San Francisco's Castro neighborhood—but it seems another Mexican spot may soon appear in the same location.

Bonita Taqueria Y Rotisserie, at the corner of 16th and Market streets, served its last tacos on Sunday. Its owners did not respond to requests for comment on why they decided to close.

When The Standard visited on Monday afternoon, a new banner hung outside the store for Tacos El Tucan, which has an existing Richmond location. A man inside the storefront said he was instructed to say nothing to journalists, but it seems the neighborhood won't be one taco place down for long.

Walking up to the restaurant's door Monday, regular Bonita customer Valentina Castillo said she had just stopped off to pick up dinner for her daughter.

"I guess I'm going to have to go someplace else," she said. "Their tacos were really good. I liked the Bonita Bowl. My husband was a big fan of the Nor-Cal burrito. Their salads were pretty good, and for brunch, their omelets were good. The menus are pretty awesome. It was super friendly and fast service."

The Castro has endured issues with commercial vacancies since before the pandemic, according to Andrea Aiello, who runs the local Community Benefit District.

Aiello said the vacancy rate is now 15%, down from 25% last year in the CBD's footprint, which covers 19th to Waller streets along the Market Street commercial corridor.

"I'd say it's moving in the right direction," said Aiello.

George Kelly can be reached at