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Jan 19, 2012 10:19 PM

Macayo’s – W. Charleston, an Obituary

In a recent Review-Journal column, John L. Smith (a Western High School (1978) classmate of mine) announced the closing of Macayo’s on West Charleston. While many may consider this as non-Chow Hound worthy, those of us who started their CH career at a very early age must recognize this passing.

I started going to dinner at the age of five or six at Macayo’s – East Charleston (near to Fong’s Garden, another CHer memory) in the very early 1960’s. When the West Charleston restaurant opened, the monthly Mexican dinner with the hosts, my parents, moved to West Charleston. The memorable part of these dinners was the Roy Rogers cocktail with the plastic burro on the rim of the glass.

As John L. Smith mentioned in his column, Macayo’s – W. Charleston was one of two significant places for the three most western Las Vegas High Schools (Western, Bonanza, and Clark) to go to after basketball or football games. (The other was a Shakey’s on W. Charleston). Instead of the plastic burro, the memory here is the TCT (Toasted Cheese Tostado), basically a large flour tortilla with melted cheese. They are called quesadillas today, but in 1978 everybody ordered TCTs.

In recent years, Macayo’s – W. Charleston has become the occasional weekend lunch spot for my wife and me, basic Tex-Mex food and margaritas.

So I since believe being a CHers is more then the most recent great dining experience and more about how we got here, I truly morn the passing of childhood, teenager, and adult experiences. Though, the good memories remain. My wife and I will truly miss this restaurant.

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  1. I loved your post, lv. I think most of us have a place like this in our lives (for me, it was a Chinese-Polynesian restaurant that was the height of exoticism to a little kid). In Las Vegas, the biggest blow was the loss of The Green Shack.

    1. I agree we will miss this restaurant. TCT's were a staple of my high school years in the late '70s - oh so cheap and a great gathering spot for late night romps of 17 year olds.

      My favorite dish, though, was the incredible Steak Cortez, stuffed with cheese and green chilies and top with more cheese and mushrooms.

      Can't beat those memories.