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Pancho’s, A Mazatlan Favorite

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Text and Photos © Cindy Bates Muir.
Specialty drinks are the house specialty!


Panchos, A Mazatlan Favorite

I’ve visited Mazatlan, Mexico many times. The historic city lies on the coast of Mexico across the Sea of Cortez from Cabo San Lucas and has been a resort favorite for decades. I never visit, however, without having at least one meal at Pancho’s restaurant.

Pancho’s is owned by a longtime entrepreneur named Francisco Lizarrago and there are several aspects of his place that set it apart. It’s situated overlooking the beach and every meal comes with a small appetizer and ends with a shot of Kahlua and cream, all gratis. The service is top notch and Francisco is sure to greet all who dine there.

I recently had dinner there and “Pancho,” or rather, Francisco, set up a beautiful photo shoot on the beach to showcase his drinks. Oh, but we first had to start with his private stock, or his “hooch,” as Francisco describes it.


He serves a small shot glass of a tasty libation from a large cask and we toasted the coming sunset over the beach.


He enjoyed showing off his best-selling drinks, which were “Pancho’s Punch,” sangria with lemonade, strawberry daiquiri, pina colada, and a “Miami Vice,” which is a blend of pina colada and strawberry daiquiri. A margarita and tequilla sunrise rounded out the variety of gorgeous and tasty drinks.

As for the food, a typical Mexican food plate can easily feed two people, but there are great seafood and steak dishes offered on the menu as well. Nightly specials are always good and I actually had a Mexican-styled Osso Buco that night, which was terrific.

We settled in later for a wonderful dinner at a booth overlooking a pretty stretch of beach, active with walkers, fishermen, vendors and folks on horseback. Francisco’s background of being a waiter for years and a jack of all trades has contributed to his colorful personality and he is quick to make you feel like an old friend.

Francisco’s son is now operating a second location of Pancho’s across from the Pueblo Bonito Mazatlan Resort. The atmosphere is different, but very nice and the food is still great.

In Mazatlan, you can’t make a better choice for a great dining experience than Pancho’s!

I live in Port Aransas, Texas and love all things Parrot Head and Trop Rock. I enjoy interviewing Trop Rock artists, attending events and always look forward to seeing Trop Rock friends from around the nation! Author of the Trop Rock lyric infused cozy mystery book "Schooled for Murder." Check out my website at

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  1. Carolyn says:

    Cindy what a great article, would love to go there! The food and drinks on that beautiful beach just makes me want to jump on a plane to there!

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