Wednesday, April 18, 2018 || By Michael Romain || @maywoodnews
Featured image: Miguel Magallanes, the owner of Magallanes Tacos in Maywood. | VFP
Miguel Magallanes and his family-owned taqueria was a hit among attendees at Maywood Fest last year.
Now, the family is hoping to leverage that success with their own brick-and-mortar storefront, which opened about a month ago at 620 S. 5th Ave. in Maywood.
On April 18, village officials were on hand to formally welcome the opening of Magallanes Tacos with a brief ribbon-cutting ceremony.
Maywood Trustee Anthony Sanchez helped entice the family to turn their taco catering enterprise into a physical restaurant in the village.
Sanchez said that he once hired the Magallanes to cater a gathering at his home, which prompted him to invite them to Maywood Fest. The trustee said that taco catering is an increasingly popular trend in the Hispanic community.
Village officials and employees of Magallanes Tacos in Maywood during a ceremonial ribbon-cutting. | VFP
Sanchez said that he persuaded the family to buck that trend by selling them on Maywood — “an evolving community.”
Miguel’s son, Rafael, 23, may not have needed too much persuasion. He and his family has roots in Proviso Township. Rafael said that he grew up in Maywood and graduated from Proviso East High School. The family currently lives in Bellwood.
What sets their food apart, Rafael said, is its authenticity. Making tacos practically runs in the family. Miguel’s father and brother also make tacos. The Magallanes come from Zacatecas, Mexico — a state in the north-central part of the country.
The Mexican state has a strong presence in the United States, and the Chicago area in particular. For the last three years, the popular Zacatecano Fest — an annual cultural celebration hosted by the nonprofit Federation of United Clubs from Zacatecas — has been held in Maywood.
Magallanes Tacos opened roughly a month ago, employees said. | VFP
Rafael said that his family plans to have a presence at this year’s event, and he’s confident they’ll return to Maywood Fest, where they’ll sell their original tortillas (“they’re not as big as the regular ones”) and their homemade seasonings (“those are not ordered in”).
Even the chorizo, or Mexican sausage, is homemade, said Sanchez, who is a big fan of the dish. The food also passes Maywood Village Manager Willie Norfleet Jr.’s authenticity test.
Before working in Maywood, Norfleet Jr. served as manager of Socorro, Texas, a city right on the Mexican border.
“It feels like being back in Socorro,” he said. “I can look at the menu and tell it’s authentic. The food is delicious.”
Sanchez said that he’s set a goal of bringing at least one business into Maywood each year he’s on the board. The trustee, who was elected last April, can check that goal off of his to-do list.
For more information on Magallanes Tacos, click here. VFP
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