El Sabor a Mexico: A Father, a Daughter and a Dream

To offer even more authenticity to its menu, the Takoma Park restaurant plans to import Mexican sodas and snacks, (Photo: El Sabor a Mexico)


By Ann-Corynn Rivière

Howard University News Service

Brenda Rosas’ father had two dreams after immigrating to the United States from Mexico: to own a house and to open a restaurant. The father and daughter duo teamed up to make that second dream a reality.

Located just a few hundred feet away from the Takoma Metro station in Washington, El Sabor a Mexico has been offering customers authentic, comforting Mexican dishes for over a year now. Rosas is determined to see that El Sabor a Mexico blossoms into a success.

As a first-generation Mexican-American woman, she recognizes that she possesses certain privileges. Rosas says that she knows doors are open to her that are not open to her father. She intends to use those advantages to help her father achieve his dream.

El Sabor a Mexico faced the challenge of opening during the height of the COVID-19 pandemic. (Photo: Ann-Corynn Rivière/HUNewsService.com)

The opening of El Sabor a Mexico at 353 Cedar St. NW, however, has not come without its challenges. Opening a restaurant is a vast undertaking even in ideal conditions. An unforeseen set of obstacles presented themselves when Rosas and her father decided to open El Sabor a Mexico amid an unprecedented pandemic.

The restaurant had an initial opening on July 1, 2021, then officially opened for full operations a few days later. Rosas and her father tried to open for the Fourth of July, but found that “it was slow. It was dead, basically.”

Rosas adds that July and August were a real struggle. Mask mandates were still in effect to curb the spread of COVID- 19, according to reports from Mayor Muriel Bowser. Consequently, many people preferred not to go out to restaurants to eat in fear of exposure to the virus.

However, all was not lost.

“When the kids started going back to school, everything started to pick up and feel the way we were expecting,” Rosas said.

A year later, El Sabor a Mexico is still frequented by students on their way home, men working on construction sites nearby and people who may be craving Mexican flavors. To offer even more authenticity, the restaurants will import Mexican sodas and snacks, Rosas said.

While El Sabor a Mexico is a local favorite in the Takoma Park neighborhood, Rosas hopes to open more restaurants that are centrally located in Washington. “Everybody’s goal as an owner is to have various locations and hopefully, we get there.”

Rosas also says that working with her father and helping him achieve his dream are the reasons she has so much drive and is so determined to see El Sabor a Mexico succeed. When she doubts herself, she says, her father is always there to encourage her to keep going.

Ann-Corynn Rivière is a reporter for HUNewsService.com.