June 9, 2021 by Carol Britton Meyer
Dining at Locales Tacos y Tequila once it opens will be a family-friendly experience, featuring Mexican-, or Baja-style, tacos, burritos, quesadillas, salads, appetizers, churros (fried dough topped with cinnamon sugar), and other tasty offerings, either inside or outdoors on a warm summer's day or evening.
The restaurant will also feature what owner Brian McLaughlin refers to as a "tremendous" tequila bar and a "casual, fun, exciting atmosphere," along with a newly-reconfigured parking area.
The opening date for Locales Tacos -- located at 6 Crow Point Lane -- has not yet been set, but McLaughlin told the Hingham Anchor that he expects that to happen in the near future -- "the sooner the better!" he said.
Tuesday night during a Zoom meeting, the Select Board granted McLaughlin temporary approval for outside table service and modification of the restaurant's liquor license in addition to already-permitted indoor dining. McLaughlin was all smiles when the approval for outdoor dining was granted.
"I think after what we've all gone through during the past year, outdoor dining will be an asset," McLaughlin told the Hingham Anchor. "People will be able to enjoy dinner outside, especially during this great weather." The restaurant is approved for 54 seats at one time, which can be a combination of indoor and outdoor dining.
Under state COVID-19 guidelines, outdoor dining that is not part of a restaurant's original permit -- as is the case with Locales Tacos -- is allowed through an expedited permitting process with town approval. The expiration date for those permits now that the state of emergency is drawing to a close on June 15 is Aug. 15 -- two months after the state of emergency ends. However, pending state legislation, if approved, could extend that deadline.
When such a permit expires, a restaurant has the option of going before the Select Board and other town boards to seek approval to continue to offer outdoor dining through a more extensive review process.
Despite the COVID 19-related and other delays in opening the restaurant, McLaughlin said, "It's all good. We've been taking our time [getting it right], and our landlord has been incredible and the town super-responsive. We're looking forward to opening day."
Select Board member William Ramsey quipped, "We know how people love tacos in this town!"
McLaughlin is also the founder of the popular Seabird Coffee & Co. in Cohasset.