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Smack My Flats and Order Up a Burrito at New Tex-Mex Eatery

Restaurant News 08.18.09

Ocala Star-Banner

–Science teachers tell us that nature abhors a vacuum. Evidently, so do some quick service food chains–

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Ergo, to fill the “vacuum” that was Ocala, Tijuana Flats- an Orlando-based Florida Tex-Mex chain – has come to town. Its 68th unit opened today in the Berkshire Oaks plaza at 3950 S.W. College Road just west of I-75.

“We’re in Gainesville,” says founder Brian Wheeler. “So we wanted to fill in the space between there and Orlando. We knew this would be a great place.”

Tijuana Flats features a range of Tex-Mex selections: chimichangas, tacos, flautas, quesadillas, burritos. Each order is made fresh to order in the Flats kitchen and brought to your table.

Meanwhile, you savor samples of 15 sauces ranging in Scovilles (the measure of “hot” in peppers) from “sissy” to “Oh, lord, don’t take me now!” to season your selection.
Many of them are called “Smack my [insert crude term for donkey here] and call me Sally.”

“We’re excited to be here,” Wheeler adds.

On Thursday, to help celebrate the opening, Tijuana Flats plans to donate 20 percent of its proceeds to the Marion Therapeutic Riding Association, an Ocala organization to uses horses to assist in the treatment of mentally disadvantaged children and adults, says Brandy Blackwell, the chain’s marketing manager.

“MRTA is so unique, so Ocala we just had to,” she says.