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Los Cuates eatery finds home on West Side

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. — The site of a former Cajun-style eatery is being totally remodeled to become the first Los Cuates restaurant on the West Side.

Los Cuates co-owner George Daskalos and partners Dennis Carpenter and Larry Gutierrez recently closed a deal to buy the one-time Copeland’s of New Orleans location at 10051 Coors NW, near Cottonwood Mall.

“We are totally revamping it,” Daskalos said on Wednesday.

Renovations will include adding a patio and a space for carry-out items.

Los Cuates specializes in New Mexican food, including enchiladas, tacos, carnitas and tamales. Prices typically range from around $8 to around $13, Daskalos said.

He believes the price range has helped Los Cuates remain successful despite a tough economy.

Los Cuates also recently opened a new location in a 7,000-square-foot space at the Albuquerque International Sunport in the location formerly occupied by Garduños.

Los Cuates has restaurants at 8700 Menaul NE and 4901 Lomas NE in Albuquerque and 750 St. Francis Drive in Santa Fe. Daskalos expects the latest location to open in early 2012.

The 7,775-square-foot restaurant sits on a 2.7-acre site on a stretch of Coors, south of Alameda, known as the West Side’s “restaurant row.” Nearby eateries include Garduno’s, Zio’s Italian Kitchen, Outback Steakhouse, Red Robin, Pelican’s, Lone Star Steakhouse & Saloon and Chili’s.

Lumpy’s Burgers, a locally owned hamburger restaurant, recently established a presence in the area by taking over a former Owl Cafe location at 10121 Coors NW.

Copeland’s, which offered dishes such as jambalaya and blackened fish, opened in early 2001 and closed in 2008. At the time, owner Frank Marcello told the Journal he plan to transform it into a sports bar.

But John Henderson of NAI Maestas & Ward, who represented the seller, said it had been empty for about three years and was owned by an Oregon-based insurance company. John Youngblood of John Youngblood & Associates represented Los Cuates in the deal.

Henderson said the listing price for the building and land was $2.8 million.