Store adds its own version of the Mexican ‘mangonada’ to its menu

The Baskin-Robbins ice cream multinational chain is offering its own version of the traditional mangonada as a tribute to this Mexican treat.

The snack combines mango puree, chamoy and Tajín. The items seeks to bring a sense of nostalgia for those who grew up in Mexico and bought theirs in the tiendita and to offer a flavor that connects a new generation with its roots, the company said.

Hector Ruiz, 29, owner of two Baskin-Robbins franchises in San Diego was part of the tasting process. For him, it was important that the taste resembled the authentic mangonada he discovered south of the border as a kid.

Traditionally, mangonadas — also known as mangoneadas or chamangos — can be found as a drink, a raspado or ice pops. In this version, it is offered as a drink.

“This is our tribute to the mangonada, it’s a way to celebrate the culture of us Latinos,” Ruiz said. “It’s a combination of the sweet and tropical flavor of mango along with the bittersweet chamoy and Tajín.”

In 2018, Ruiz acquired two franchises in the county, one on Palm Avenue in Imperial Beach and on Clairemont Drive in San Diego.

“When I was a kid, my family and I emigrated to the U.S. After school, my mom would take me and my little sister to grab a snow cone. It was a tradition we shared,” he recalled.

From there he had the dream of having a business “that would make people happy,” and to fulfill it, he took out his savings he had as a teacher in Chula Vista.

Last year San Diego was among the first cities nationwide city to add the mangonada to its menu to test it among their customers, Ruiz said. After it was well-received its now offered nationwide for a limited time.

Because of its proximity to the border and the large concentration of immigrants in San Diego, it is more common to find mangonadas in fruterías or other stores around town, but Ruiz noted, that may not be the case in other cities.

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