First timer-- glad we went
On my first visit 7-4-13, we found it to be great food for quite a reasonable price. The building has been home to many different restaurants: Howard Johnson's(the original builders), Ira's(my first memory of eating there), Carmen's, El Colorado, and some I can't recall. The Ranchito(based in Houston) folks did NOT skimp on a major remodel and one familiar with the location would be hard pressed to recognize it if they weren't informed where they were.
To the food-- two salsas are brought by the waitress, a warm salsa clearly of roasted tomato etc.(excellent) and a salsa fresca(also excellent). My party of two ordered the carne al pastor(beef and pork done up in fabulous seasonings, moist and delicious) and chile relleno(stuffed chile wrapped in a house made corn tortilla then fried, likely the best ever eaten) and both were great. The frijoles a la charra have large chunks of sausage and jalapeno in them and are some of the best I've ever had. House made tortillas were a nice break from the usual gummy packaged variety. The nice selection of Mexican beers could be colder, but weren't warm at all. If you like beer, you must try the micheladas, made with the beer of your choice-- refreshing and good to say the least.
If you're tired of the "same old same old" when it comes to Mexican food in Waco, you must try them-- it'll wake you up.