An interview with Chuy Gutierrez, Owner
What made you decide to get into the business of food/drink?
I learned to make my grandma’s chicken noodle soup from scratch at 5 years old, and the first step was killing the chicken. I admits I was scared, but that didn’t stop me. Fear didn’t stop me when I came to America to earn my citizenship, either. I earned the right to work in the United States, and got my first job from Don Carano as a dishwasher. I held that job for 20 years, climbing the ranks until I was a head chef. Before opening my own restaurant, I helped open the Silver Legacy and managed 750 restaurant employees. I again faced my fears when me and my wife of 20 years, Maria, set out to open Fresh Mex — a taco shop on Fifth and Keystone. My family has grown with three beautiful children, and my business has grown into fine Mexican dining in two hot locations, Reno’s Midtown District and Sparks Victorian Square.
I chose to stay in Reno because I believe it’s the hospitality capital of the world, and that’s because of the people here in northern Nevada. I’ve always imagined being a part of a small, close knit community that I could embrace. Washoe County has embraced my family and in turn has embraced my restaurant. My family and this restaurant have made it through many, many obstacles because of the support we have received from northern Nevadans, and we mean to give back in every way we can. This is our home.
Why are you excited for Reno Restaurant Week?
We’re always excited to be a part of something new and fun.
What is one thing you’d like your guests to know about you and/or your establishment?
One thing about me: I am very charismatic and I want our customers to feel like they are at their second house when they eat at Mari Chuy’s!
One thing about the restaurant: The ingredients of our Molcajete have been passed down for three generations. I creates my own blend of spices through a local company, High Quality Organics, to make sure it’s consistent and delicious every time!
How are you complying with safety guidelines for COVID-19?
Our restaurant is operating at 50% capacity, it’s sanitized multiple times throughout every day, employees are wearing masks, and we are all social distancing.