Let’s Eat: Household custom meets quick informal at Tacos El Capi | Meals & Drink

Estimated read time 6 min read

Paul Fernandez’s father had the nickname “Capitan” or “Capi” for brief when he was rising up in Madison within the Nineties.

“I used to be all the time his solely man, his solely boy, so he all the time known as me ‘Capi, Capi, Capi, Capi,'” Hernandez stated.

Final yr, when Hernandez was in search of a reputation for his new Mexican restaurant on Madison’s east facet, he determined to honor his father, who handed away in 2017. Tacos El Capi opened at his bakery location in Individuals’s at 2810 E. Washington Ave. December 1st.

Tacos El Capi opened on December 1 on the former Individuals’s Bakery location at 2810 E. Washington Ave.

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Mateo Mora presents the Pambazos Sandwich at Tacos El Capi. Bread dipped in purple guajillo pepper sauce and fried.

Tacos El Capi’s menu of homely Mexican classics is served in an informal setting paying homage to a weekend neighborhood barbecue. That is emblematic of the Hernandez household’s lengthy involvement in Madison’s Mexican meals scene.

The household’s first huge title was Mercado Marimar, which Hernandez’s mom, Maria Garcia, has run since 2000 at 2102 S. Park Avenue. Right this moment, the town has many Hispanic grocery shops, however Garcia was a pioneer when he first opened the market. As Hernandez stated within the early Nineties:

The market’s slow-cooked carnitas and different delicacies draw a various buyer base from everywhere in the metropolis. Though the dish is well-liked, the restricted seating house and excessive demand make it troublesome to serve prospects with restricted eating occasions.

“Some folks come there for the 30-minute lunch window, nevertheless it’s too busy and so they take a very long time to get their meals out,” Hernandez stated. I assumed.

all the time busy

Hernandez and his brother Mateo Mora opened the Taquitos Marimar meals truck in 2012 to broaden their market attain past sit-down eating in South Madison. Her sister Leticia Hernandez and her husband Daniel opened Tapatio Scotina Her Mexicana in Fitchburg in 2018. In the meantime, Paul his Hernandez continued to search for a extra everlasting location to have his personal.

“Regent Avenue and Monroe Avenue are precisely the place we needed to go,” says Hernandez. “However there actually wasn’t something there.”

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Tacos El Capi provides three varieties of crispy biryah tacos ($14). Tacos El Capi serve every full of slow-cooked shredded beef served with seasoned beef he broth.

When he noticed Individuals’s Bakery listings, he noticed a chance to convey his delicacies to a rising a part of the town the place he noticed extra Mexican choices out there.

“There are plenty of skyscrapers, flats and new buildings. East Wash is all the time busy,” Hernandez stated.

Hernandez and Mora needed the brand new restaurant to mix in with the neighborhood’s construction whereas making a “residence away from residence” house for the underrepresented East Aspect residents.

“I am the kind of one that in the event you scratch my again, I will scratch your again,” Hernandez stated. I’m pleased to take action.”

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Mateo Mora is co-owner of Tacos El Capi, which opened on the east facet of Madison on December 1st.

Traditional roots, trendy look

Hernandez signed a lease for the Tacos El Capi location on April 15. He spent 9 months transforming the restaurant’s inside with simply himself, his household, and some mates who did the development work.

“There have been nights after I could not sleep…it was traumatic. There have been nights after I needed to surrender,” Hernandez stated. “However we had been in a position to get it achieved.”

Tacos El Capi lastly opened on December 1st, and since then enterprise has been regular regardless of the frigid winter climate. The menu contains Mercado His Marimar fan favorites equivalent to carnitas and birria.

Hernandez additionally included some recipes impressed by her late father. Initially well-liked in Guadalajara, this French bread sandwich is full of carnitas and pinto beans, then drizzled with a thick tomato sauce and topped with sliced ​​onions and lime.

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Tacos el Capi’s Tortas ahogadas de carnitas are French bread sandwiches full of carnitas and pinto beans, then drizzled with a thick tomato sauce and topped with sliced ​​onions and limes.

“It is from my father’s hometown,” Hernandez stated. “It is very well-known in Mexico, nevertheless it’s not achieved fairly often right here.”

Different Tacos El Capi highlights embody the Capi Steak Fries ($12) full of shredded beef and nacho cheese. A trio of crispy birria tacos ($14) full of slow-cooked shredded beef and served with a seasoned beef broth.

First popularized in Tijuana, birria tacos have exploded on social media due to their signature brilliant orange hue. Mora stated the Hernandez household began serving birria tacos at Mercado Marimar a couple of yr or two in the past after seeing them on TikTok.

“As quickly as they bought in Marimar, they blew up. Everybody was coming for them,” Hernandez stated. “We put it in Capi’s and he is considered one of our prime sellers.”

“I like tacos el capi”

The restaurant partitions are designed for the digital age. Hernandez and his girlfriend painted a mural wall crammed with brilliant yellow and a inexperienced wall with a neon selfie signal that learn, “I like tacos el capi.”

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Kapi Steak Fries ($12) have shredded beef and nacho cheese.

“The telephone eats first,” Mora stated. However behind the fashionable contact lies coronary heart and custom.

A framed portrait of Our Girl of Guadalupe rests on the again counter. This can be a small depiction of a Murkado he Marimar mural, a token of blessing that Taco El Capi acquired from the priest upon its opening. Mercado he is identical blessing given to Marimar over 20 years in the past.

It’s a image of sincerity and new beginnings.

“There could also be bumps within the street, there could also be adversities alongside the best way, however so long as you retain your head down and hold transferring ahead, issues will work out,” Mora stated. “Should you pray, it can undoubtedly come true.”

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