As soon as Jeff Rogers found out the Campus Corner game day experience was happening a week earlier than expected, he began planning for a long week to get his restaurant ready to open.
Rogers opened Yo! Pablo Tacos & Tequila on Asp Avenue over the weekend, becoming the corner’s newest food spot. The concept’s Campus Corner location will have 15 types of tequila and 10 tacos, in addition to sopapilla bites, elotes and carne asada cheese fries.
The Campus Corner location is Rogers’ fourth Yo! Pablo Tacos & Tequila, with a fifth restaurant set to open in Edmond in coming weeks. Rogers said he started the concept because he loves tacos, and wanted to create a menu that offered more than other taco spots using high-quality proteins and toppings.
“I’ve tried all the local stuff in the city that is popular, and I’m not the biggest fan of certain places, and they don’t use good meat and saturate everything in sauce,” Rogers said. “I think it’s crucial to use fresh ingredients and make it where you can actually taste that premium quality and all the flavors.”
Rogers launched his first location in Oklahoma City in October 2020, and has seen the business take off since that time. He said he watched the Campus Corner space, which formerly housed Seven47, for a long time.
He said he had been actively pursuing a space on Campus Corner for around six years, but it didn’t work out until now. He sees the Asp Avenue space as a perfect fit for what they offer, he said.
“I want to be a restaurant first and foremost, because we have really good food and drinks, but we also want to add that nightlife and game day dynamic too,” Rogers said. “I knew food would be my driver here, and I think it’s going to be a good fit with kids and families.”
For tequila fans, the Norman location currently offers 15 varieties; as demand grows, Rogers said he will adjust accordingly.
“I’m a tequila guy, so that part was kind of for me,” Rogers said.
From 10 p.m. to close, individuals over 21 can come partake in the nightlife dynamic at the Campus Corner bar and restaurant. Those who are underage will not be allowed to enter during that time.
A live DJ will be providing tunes on Taco Tuesdays, where there will be specials on tacos and Mexican beers. Thursday, Friday, Saturday evenings and Sundays during brunch, the restaurant will also feature a DJ.
“It’s all trial and error, figuring out what people enjoy most, so if people want to come out on a Sunday for brunch, then we will have it,” Rogers said.
The game day menu will be large-batch items. Rogers said that will allow for quick service.
On game days, fans can grab an egg, bacon and chorizo breakfast taco from 9 to 11 a.m.; from 11 a.m. to 10 p.m., patrons can purchase chips with salsa and queso, and carne asada tacos.
Rogers said opening in time for game day was a stressful process, and some supplies have yet to be delivered.
“Luckily for me, there were local distribution places that had some stuff I was able to piecemeal together to get to where we are now,” Rogers said.
Rogers said the restaurant’s Facebook page has received overwhelming engagement after starting social media posts just a few days ago, and hopes it’s a sign of things to come.
“We hope people come to check us out,” Rogers said. “Game days should be fun, and I’m an OU guy and so are my friends. We’re excited to see what happens.”