The name says it all - La Hacienda del Sazon.
Most people know what "hacienda" means. "Sazon" means seasoning. Thus, a rough translation of Minden's newest Mexican restaurant is "The estate of seasoning."
"A lot of customers want a restaurant where everything is more authentic Mexican," said Indian Hills resident and business owner Laura Novoa.
Novoa, 34, and husband Fermin Vicente, 35, have lived in Douglas County for 16 years. They both immigrated from Mexico but didn't meet each other until arriving in Nevada. For the last seven years, they worked side-by-side in another Mexican restaurant before deciding to branch out on their own.
La Hacienda del Sazon opened about three weeks ago in the former suite of Rosy's Mexican restaurant in the Ironwood center. To the north is the movie theater. Directly to the south is San Miguel's Grocery and Butcher Shop.
"We've had a lot of customers," Novoa said. "It's a small town here, and we have a lot of friends. It's been a good start."
The husband and wife team are working owners. Vicente cooks, and Novoa waits tables. Brother Jose Vicente helps out in the kitchen.
Novoa said she prefers working in the restaurant she owns because it gives her control over the food. It's the authentic food that's important, she reiterated.
"A lot of customers will come just to try the different style," she said.
That style originated in Novoa's home state of Jalisco, which is located in central Mexico along the Pacific Ocean. Jalisco is credited with such cultural contributions as mariachi and tequila, but is also responsible for a particular style of cooking.
For example, taquitos at La Hacienda del Sazon come with plenty of cilantro and onions. Their tortas, or Mexican sandwiches, transcend the typical lettuce-tomato-meat combination.
"Only in Jalisco do they make this kind of torta with a special sauce," said Novoa. "I put avocado and this salsa on top."
Likewise, the quesadillas fritas, made from Novoa's own masa, come with more toppings than one might expect. Other favorites include homemade pork and chicken tamales and tostada de ceviche, both fish and shrimp varieties.
On weekends, customers can find pozole, a traditional spiced stew of pork and corn.
"Here it's more like grandma's taste, grandma's seasoning," Novoa said.
A selection of Mexican beers and margarita blends round out the menu.
"One specialty is our Mexitini, a mix of a martini and margarita," Novoa said.
Located at 1758 Highway 395, Suite A, La Hacienda del Sazon is open from 11 a.m. to 8 p.m. Monday through Thursday, 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. Friday, 10 a.m. to 9 p.m. Saturday, and 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. Sunday.
For more information, call 782-5539.