1997 A Man and a Food Cart Stand
Roberto Velasquez had an idea to do what he did best, make delicious tacos. With no business plan and very little money, fueled by his hard work he purchased a Food Cart Stand. Within months of selling tacos on Harry Hines Blvd, a bustling street filled with pedestrians, construction/ warehouse workers and truck drivers, Roberto’s taco stand became a coveted food joint for a quick, affordable taco lunch. Shortly after, local catering trucks started to place orders to fill the demands of the local clientele. Just a few months later Roberto’s humble taco stand had won over the gastronomy of the locals. To fill the demands of the catering orders, Maria resigned at Luby’s after serving as head cook for almost a decade. They soon found themselves waking up at 2:00am to begin prepping for the day’s work. Their fresh mouthwatering tacos were so popular that they were soon serving as many as 1500 patrons between breakfast and lunch.
1998 “El Paisa” A Growing Vision
Nothing about this taco business had been ordinary. By early 1998, Roberto and Maria negotiated a lease with a neighboring liquor store to build a small taco café inside the store located just a few feet from where his loyal patrons visited regularly. Now rainy days would no longer interrupt business. As the small little taco stand grew into a tiny restaurant, it was time to officially name the business. Roberto’s signature greeting had always been to call every patron “Paisa”, meaning “friend”. It seemed fitting to name the restaurant “El Paisa”. The infectious entrepreneurial spirit and work ethic that Maria and Robert Velasquez imbedded in their children was the key ingredient to the growth and success of El Paisa Corporation. It was no surprise that within less than a decade their three eldest children, Jose, Tino and Lupe Velasquez were each running and operating their own El Paisa. There are now 10 locations serving the DFW Metroplex
2012 SOLEO Mexican Kitchen
Lupe Velasquez and husband Michael Rodriguez have branched out with a new concept and vision to move the El Paisa Corporation to new heights. SOLEO Mexican Kitchen was strategically chosen for its location and will now cater to the emerging metropolis and entice a new dimension of Dallas food lovers. SOLEO will continue to provide the same delicious authentic Mexican flavor El Paisa offers, while introducing new contemporary dishes and traditional Tex Mex classics. Soleo is a fusion between old and new, celebrating the Soul of True Mexico.