Restaurant update: ‘O’ replacements open and Mad Mex closes temporarily

Just as one iconic Oakland dining destination reopens with new tenants, another has closed, at least temporarily.

Mero Restaurant Group, which operates CHiKN and Stack’d Burgers in Oakland, has finished renovations at the site of the former Original Hot Dog Shoppe at the corner of Forbes Avenue and South Bouquet Street. Now open there are Viva Los Tacos and Capriotti’s Sandwich Shop.

Viva Los Tacos is located on the first and second floor at the corner of the building. It offers a variety of tacos, from braised beef, Baja taco, Korean BBQ and mushroom and corn. It also offers bowls and house-made margaritas.

Capriotti’s Sandwich Shop is part of a national chain. The location on the Forbes Avenue side of the “O” building is the first location in Western Pennsylvania. Cheese steaks are the highlight here, but a variety of other subs and salads, plus chicken noodle and tomato bisque soups.

Also now open are Wicked Pie and PA Taco Co. on the ground floor of the William Pitt Union.

Because of staff shortages, the original Mad Mex at 370 Atwood St. temporarily closed starting Nov. 1. The restaurant’s website says it will reopen in March 2022. Bill Fuller, president of Big Burrito Restaurant Group which owns all the Max Mex locations and some other area restaurants, told The Pitt News that business generally slows down at the Oakland location starting in November until spring. But he said the location has great importance to the Mad Mex family, and they are determined to re-open in the spring and keep the location going.