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Over the weekend I received a bunch of emails all asking the same question, "Is it true Carlos O'Kelly's is closing?" Of course I had no idea, so I had to look into it.

Beef Fajitas with colorful bell peppers in cast iron pan

I reached out (called!) and the lovely person on the phone said nope. Not closing. So there you have it, right from the restaurant's mouth. Carlos O'Kelly's is NOT closing.

Where Did The Rochester Restaurant Rumor Come From?

The 7,100 square-foot building Carlos O'Kelly's is in was sold (back in early September), for $950,000, so maybe that's how the rumor mill started murmuring? According to a records search, the building / land was bought by 4825 US-52, LLC (4825 US-52 is the address of Carlos O'Kelly's in Rochester, Minnesota). That business is related to Rochester Motor Cars.

Google/Rabe ARt
Google/Rabe art

What's that have to do with the price of a mattress at Slumberland? Rochester Motor Cars owns Rochester Mazda, which is right near Carlos O'Kelly's. So maybe one day Carlos O'Kelly's will have to move to make room for more Mazdas, but that is strictly speculation on my part.

Carlos O'Kelly's Fun Facts

  • First restaurant located in Marion, Iowa.
  • Currently 15 locations in the chain in Iowa, Minnesota, Kansas, Nebraska, and Virginia.
  • The Rochester location (and building) has been here for 24 years
  • It's the Only Carlos O'Kelly's in Minnesota!*

*Jessica Williams Broke this story earlier this year...

Bowl of warm queso (cheese dip) with a plate of tortilla chips
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Rochester is one lucky town!  Not only do we have Mayo Clinic in our backyard but we are also the only town in Minnesota with a Carlos O'Kelly's restaurant.

I know!  I was shocked when I learned this fun fact also.  I thought for sure the Twin Cities would have a few Carlos O'Kelly's locations but nope, Rochester is the only spot serving up their menu.  You have to drive two hours to Waterloo or Cedar Falls to see another one. (Keep Reading - Rochester Has the Only Location of This Chain In Minnesota)

As always, if you have a comment, complaint, or concern about something I wrote here, please let me know:

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