Taco Madre Mexican Kitchen was the prescient ambition of an American restaurateur with a deep love of Mexico to bring the authentic tastes and freshness of roadside stands outside of Puebla to New York in 1999. He asked us to design the brand- both its architecture and graphics - to bring some of the experiential flavor of this roadside to New York. He planned to open a series of Taco Madre’s throughout the region in affordable commercial strips, including shopping centers and malls, in order to establish a new level of quality in fast food.
We capitalized on the affinity of the Mexican stand with the American commercial vernacular, which share the same modest materials of concrete masonry units, corrugated metal, open web steel joists and standard lumber. In celebration of Mexican culture, we added its vibrant color and moments of intense handicraft to this “Home Depot” aesthetic. The Taco Madre shown here was in a shopping center in Yonkers. Skyrocketing commercial rents saw the closing of the last Taco Madre in Brooklyn Heights by 2010, but its legacy of small eateries serving freshly prepared regional food – now even street side in trucks - carries on.