Our story

Cora at Roseburg Square is named after Grandma Paulina Corazon Delavaca-Ramirez whose nickname was Cora.

Cora was the youngest of nine children in a Spanish family who fled Spain and settled in the province of Pasay in the Philippines around 1890. When Cora’s father died the family came together and opened a restaurant, Cora’s Stand, in Pasay. The family needed to make money since their father passed and wanted to bring the community together during the pre-WWII happenings.

The restaurant was named after Cora, age 16, because she was the youngest of the siblings. The American-Spanish menu became a draw for airmen and military personnel and the family began to make ties of friendship with some of the soldiers. One of these soldiers was George Nord who, when he met Cora, was instantly drawn to her. The two dated for some time until George went to war and then was captured by the Japanese and forced to endure the Bataan Death March.

Tragically, Cora’s Stand and the Ramirez family home were destroyed in the war. Despite this, the family continued to serve their community, neighbors, church members, and military camps. They played a crucial role in the Philippine Resistance, delivering food and smuggling messages to POW camps.

George Nord remained a prisoner of war for over four years. Two of his military friends married Cora’s sisters, though only one survived the ordeal. Upon escaping, George found his way back to the Ramirez family and his beloved Cora. They married, had nine children, and George continued his military career until retirement.

Cora’s legacy of bringing people together through her cooking lives on. Traditional Ramirez-family dishes like Paella and Flan remain staples at family gatherings, continuing the spirit of unity and resilience that defines Cora’s story.

Our Family Fusion

The family that owns and operates Cora descends from Spain, the Philippines, Italy, Scandinavia and Central America. Our cuisine is a combination of our blended heritage and a homage to our cultural lineage. Cora at Roseburg Square is dedicated to the lineage of the ancestors who came before them and is launching Cora to honor the family’s efforts to engage in the community and help those in need through delicious, nutritious food. Our goal for Cora is to become a pillar in the community where friendship, nourishment and love can be found. 

Grandpa Sancho 'Chico' Zabala & Gloria Nicolas “Gigi”

Served in the US Navy from July 31, 1942 to January 2,1946 as a Cook 1st Class. After Grandpa Sancho was discharged he worked in several San Francisco restaurants. Most notable, he worked at Joe Dimaggio’s on Fisherman’s Wharf and Oreste, a fine dining restaurant.  Later, Chico married Gloria Nicolas and they had three children. Grandma Gloria enjoyed cooking as well with tomato beef, lumpia, pancit and Biko amongst her favorite dishes to make for the family.

Grandma Nita Vasquez- Harvey

Was a preschool teacher and loved to bake, especially at Christmas. Chicken and dumplings was one of her favorite dishes to make for the large family of eleven children. 

Mama Paula Tejada

Descending from El Salvador, Mama Paula, great grandmother to the Lopez kids included in our family lineage, enjoyed making pupusas with curtido, enchiladas and queso seco for the family to enjoy.

Uncle Randy Downs

Was a cook in the Air Force and was stationed in Thailand for many years. He was a tremendous influence in Chef George’s early years, teaching him many techniques and exposing him to many different cuisines.