In the spring of 1989, a friend of Tob and Lena Paul decided to sell his Mexican restaurant in Woods Cross. The Pauls bought the restaurant, changed the name to Lorena's, and their four children, Laurie, Sandra, Leon and Yvonne Paul, came to work for them as managers and servers.
Today, the Paul family is still working together, and their business is thriving.
Laurie Paul said one of the best things about their restaurant is that the food and the service are consistent. They have had the same two head cooks since they bought the restaurant 22 years ago.
"We put a lot of care into keeping it consistent," she said.
They also make sure to use the freshest ingredients, making their own tortillas every day. Laurie Paul said the food is used up at the end of the night because they are so busy, allowing them to start over fresh each morning.
The most popular meal on the menu is the Smothered Burrito With Cheese ($4.15), a flour tortilla stuffed with chili verde, seasoned pork, and beans, smothered in chili verde sauce and cheese.
The other two favorites are the Small Combo ($7.05) with a meat and bean taco, green chili and bean burrito, tostada and a cheese enchilada, and the Large Combo ($8.05), which is the same but also includes rice, beans, chili verde and a tortilla.
They also sell a lot of cheese enchiladas ($2.65) in a corn tortilla or in a flour tortilla ($4.15). The appetizer Laurie Paul recommends is the nachos, which come in three varieties, Cheese with Jalapenos ($3.40), Cheese with Beans and Jalapenos ($4.40), or The Supreme ($8.50), covered in beef or chicken, beans, onions, tomatoes, olives, cheese, jalapenos and guacamole.
The guacamole is homemade and comes as a side ($4.10) or as a salad. "We don't do anything small. All of our portions are generous," Laurie Paul said.
For dessert, there is Flan ($3), vanilla custard doused in toffee caramel syrup, or Sopapillas ($1.65), scones served hot with honey butter.
Laurie Paul said the restaurant has gained a large following of regular customers over the years. She is often asked what they put into their food to make it so addicting.
"I tell them it's 'love,' " she said.
- Address: 2477 S. 800 West, Woods Cross
- Hours: 10 a.m.-9 p.m. Sunday-Thursday, 10 a.m.-10:30 p.m. Fridays and Saturdays
- Phone: 801-295-2441