Tooele Transcript Bulletin – News in Tooele, Utah

January 26, 2022
Casa del Rey

Restaurant goers remember good times they spent at Casa 

Casa Del Rey, Grantsville’s only Mexican restaurant, closed last week after almost 20 years of serving customers. 

In 2003, Steve and Cindy Trujillo opened the doors of Casa Del Rey with high hopes.

Steve Trujillo loved to cook, according to his daughter and owner of Casa  Del Rey for the past five years, Jamie Trujillo.

“My dad has always cooked,” Jamie Trujillo said. “They [mom and dad] always wanted to open a restaurant and they had a friend that told them to do it, so they opened Casa.”

When Jamie Trujillo took over the restaurant from her parents, meeting community members quickly became her favorite thing about Casa Del Rey.

“There were a lot of nice people,” she said. “It was a lot of fun seeing where they all came from. There were people from West Jordan and Ogden. It was neat for them to come clear out to Grantsville for us. I also loved watching the kids grow up to become young ladies and men.”

Jamie also enjoyed the Tip-a-Cop events held at the restaurant where police officers would raise money for their Shop-with-a-Cop event each year.

“I loved the community involvement with Tip-a-Cop. It was amazing,” Trujillo said.

Jaime said she has been thinking about closing the restaurant for a while, and about three weeks ago she made up her mind.

When asked why she was closing Casa’s doors, Jamie simply said, “It was time.”

“It’s time to move on to a new adventure,” she said.

A former A&W Restaurant, Casa Del Rey had most recently been known as Jimbo’s Drive In before Steve and Cindy Trujillo transformed the building into Casa Del Rey.

Jaimie Trujillo confirmed rumors that Virg’s Restaurant recently purchased the building and that it was sold to them willingly.

“I kept getting offers on the building and finally Virg’s bought it,” Trujillo explained. “I wanted to keep it small and community oriented, so it’s good that they bought it.”

Casa Del Rey may open in a new location in the future, but Trujillo doesn’t have any plans set in stone.

“I just want to say thank you for everyone’s support, coming in, and letting us be part of the community,” Trujillo said. “It’s been an amazing 19 years… It’s been really good and I’m going to miss it.

Trujillo also wants to thank her family and employees for their support.

After 20 years Casa Del Rey left lots of memories for its customers.

“A few years ago, our ward was having a party and I needed Mexican decorations for it,” commented Lynn Trapp Smith, Tooele. “We just happened to go to dinner there and the owner came around to talk to us. He was so kind and, in the conversation, he said that I could use all he had on his walls- big sombreros that I would not have been able to get anywhere else. It was such a nice, nice thing to do.”

Jessica Mohler remembers her time spent at Casa Del Rey as a child.

“My two friends and I basically grew up there,” she said. “We lived close and we would walk there as kids and say ‘we are here for the free chips and salsa.’  We didn’t know any better at the time, but Jamie was always so sweet and would give us the chips and salsa. She would also accept our quarters and pennies or whatever change we had to give.”

“We gave Steve some of the sombreros that are part of the décor, so we feel a real kinship there,” said Granstville resident Arlene Medina Mair.

Jeanne Robinson, Grantsville, remembers Steve Trujillo sponsoring her daughter in sports.

“Casa Del Rey will be missed,” she said. “Steve worked very hard and made his restaurant so special. You could tell he loved his customers and community. He supported my daughter and many others by sponsoring them in their sports. His photo wall was a fun added touch. Steve and Casa are the absolute best.”

Chey Hickman, Grntsville, recalled working at the restaurant right out of high school.

“There are so many memories I have from my time there,” she said. “There are so many friendships with the girls and guys that worked there and all the amazing customers that came in. I met my now fiancé while working there and my two best friends…Casa was a family no matter how long it’s been since you worked there. Steve loved everyone who came in, even if he gave you a hard time.”

“Casa will always have a special place in my heart. It gave me my start and I will always be thankful for Steve and Jamie for being such an important part of my life.”

As of press time, despite many requests, the Trujillo’s have not revealed their salsa recipe.

 

 

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