Joe Ysco says he's been doing restaurant work since he was 10 years old. Now, the former Tucumcari High School student has returned to his home town to open his own place.
Tucumcari's newest restaurant is Joe's first venture as a restaurant owner, not the waiter, dishwasher, busser or cook, he said. It's called Joe's Back in the Day, 321 E. Route 66 Blvd. Assisting him in the venture is Stanley Burns, another Tucumcari resident, who declined to be interviewed.
Black-and-white checked tablecloths and a special menu recall the 1950s, when rock 'n' roll was being born and Route 66 was the Mother Road for tourists and wanderers alike.
Joe's burger plates with names like the "Patsy Kline Melt," join offerings like the "Frank Sinatra," featuring Italian cold cuts, and the "Buddy Holly," a breaded chicken breast sandwich, along with salads, on the menu.
Joe's café is open from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. and from 4 p.m. to 8 p.m. Monday through Saturday.