Our Story Began In 1924
Casa La Golondrina Cafe was the first Mexican restaurant in Los Angeles, originally La Mision, opening in the current site of LA’s City Hall in 19224. My grandmother, Consuelo Castillo de Bonzo, an immigrant from Aguas Calientes, Mexico, was invited to relocate to Olvera Street in the Pelaconi House, built circa 1855-57. Consuelo had a penchant for good food, culture, celebration and loved her mother country’s traditions as much as she loved to hob knob with the late, great Los Angeles brass. She not only brought traditional Mexican food to the forefront but also lively mariachi bands and colorful, regional dancers, along with many first-ever Mexican holidays that are now celebrated all over the City.
Casa La Golondrina Cafe first opened its doors on April 30, 1930, for the opening night party of Olvera Street. The Olvera Street restoration project was undertaken by our madrina, Christine Sterling, who received major financial support from the Chandler family, owners of the Los Angeles Times. This benevolent and all-consuming project ultimately preserved an important piece of Los Angeles’ early architectural and social history by bringing local townspeople in to reuse the dilapidated buildings and bringing to life this forgotten historical area. What is now called, El Pueblo de Los Angeles had fallen into disrepair and disrepute with saloons and prostitution and all sorts of racy Los Angeles color that held the district in its grip for many years. As our City matured, Olvera Street was part of that process and has been kept alive, in spite of great challenges, over its near century-long history.
Vivien Consuelo de Bonzo, Proprietress
Truly Authentic Mexican Cuisine
While many decades have passed, we still strive to continue to bring an atmosphere of culture and warm hospitality with home made foods that are not packaged or processed but made by hand using only the freshest ingredients. We have taken steps to adapt to the growing desires for vegetarian and vegan entrees using Mexican ingredients. Many Mexican people use foods to help heal illness, like eating cactus to lower the blood sugar, or salsa with chile that has very high quantities of Vitamin C, or fresh pinto beans, in their soup, as an immune system booster. There are many benefits to Mexican cuisine when it is made with love and care and flavor!
We take care also in offering non-gmo corn products and safe cooking oils, using butter and extra virgin olive oil for sautéing and cooking not only for flavor, but also because we are concerned about your health.
Casa La Golondrina Cafe warmly welcome you to our family restaurant and want you to know we are one of a handful of single, family-owned businesses in Los Angeles that provide Union benefits to all our employees and have for over forty years. Our workers are worth it! Unlike many businesses that were unionized against their will, my father, Alfred Anthony Bonzo brought the union in so that he could provide very generous benefit packages to his long term, loyal employees. Our food prices reflect these benefits and we hope that you still find a value in eating our Truly Authentic Mexican Cuisine and knowing that everyone on our team appreciates your continued patronage.
Talk With Us
TELL US WHAT YOU THINK AND HOW WE'RE DOING.
Reservations are taken Monday - Friday,
except during Holidays and Special Events.
Call: (213) 628-4349
we seat on a first come, first serve basis.
Large Groups & Special Events
please fill in the form below to send us your reservation request.
Monday 10:30 AM - 7:00 PM
Tuesday 10:30 am - 7:00 pm
Wednesday 10:30 AM - 2:00 PM
Thursday 10:30 AM - 7:00 PM
Friday 10:00 AM - 8:30 PM
Saturday 10:00 AM - 8:30 PM
Sunday 10:00 AM - 7:00 PM