Plaza Mexico, a new Mexican restaurant, opened in September on Merchant Street off Monocacy Boulevard. Eduardo Murillo owns the restaurant with his brother Freddie Murillo and his cousin Benny Ayala. This is their fifth location, and the first that Murillo has owned.
Their grand opening and ribbon-cutting took place Nov. 4.
The restaurant serves a variety of Mexican food, and has vegetarian options as well as a children’s menu. They also have a variety of deals, including happy hour from 3 to 7 p.m., when jumbo margaritas are $6.95 each, and draft and bottled beers are $1 off. Daily specials rotate.
Eduardo Murillo sat down with The Frederick News-Post to talk about the new restaurant. This interview has been edited for clarity and length.
Why did you decide to open a location in Frederick?
It’s a bigger city than what we’re used to; [our other locations] are in towns and not really big cities. So we wanted to give it a try in Frederick.
Where are your other locations?
We have three in southern Maryland, one in Baltimore and one in Delaware.
Why did you choose this location in town?
It’s a unique location with a big potential to grow. It’s a newer area.
What made you want to open your own restaurant?
I’ve been managing for about seven years. I had managed the North Beach location, which is probably one of their busiest ones. This felt like the next step.
What do you enjoy about running and managing a restaurant?
Just everything. Meeting new people, there’s always new things to learn about the business. It’s challenging, but it’s very pleasing.
What are your most popular menu items?
The vallartas (grilled shrimp with chicken and scallops) are really good. The street tacos, too. Our fajitas are very popular.
Where do the recipes come from?
Well, it’s a family-owned business, so we have more family [members] that own businesses. The recipe that we carried on is from the first restaurant in Richmond, Virginia. It’s owned by my aunt. The recipes are evolving, now, too.
Is your family all in the business together?
Yes. It’s fun, you get to see them every day.
Where are you from?
I’m from Guadalajara, Mexico. I came here in 2000. Everybody [in my family] is from Guadalajara, everybody came and migrated to the U.S. in 2000. [Some of my family] did their [restaurant] thing before we came, it’s a long story. But they already had their restaurant in 1990. We weren’t in the restaurant business until my brother Freddie worked at that first location. And then from there, he moved to Maryland and opened a location with Benny. And then we started expanding.
What are you most excited about for the new location?
Just serving the community of Frederick, and to do something new, a new experience.