That’s El folks... Mexican restaurant to shut in new year
THE owners behind Manchester burger joint Solita have announced the imminent closure of their Mexican restaurant.
El Taquero, which opened back in 2017 behind the Northern Quarter branch of Solita, will be ‘closing its doors forever’ on January 12.
The restaurant’s owners have cited increasing financial pressures and nearby building works for the closure.
The restaurant on Back Turner Street specialises in authentic freshlymade tacos and quesadillas, with a lengthy list of mezcal, tequila and Mexican beers.
Co-owner Simon Pogson said: “It’s just too much financial pressure. I’ve been riding a loss for 18 months now and I just can’t do it any more.
“I really hoped that the quality would rise us up – I really believe in the food we’re cooking here, I think it’s great, but we’ve just not got the customers through the door that we need.”
El Taquero sits on one of the Northern Quarter’s back streets, a location that was affected by the demolition of the 19th century block on Thomas Street.
The beloved historic building, which was home to the Al-Faisal curry house, had to be pulled down in 2018 because of a risk of collapse.
The site has been a building site ever since, with Kelvin Street completely closed off.
Simon said: “The location’s definitely part of it. The street’s blocked off and there’s all this building work around, but then the little backstreet curry caffs seem to be okay so I don’t know.
“It’s tough across the whole hospitality industry. Our trade’s dying out – and that’s this close to Christmas.
“The Brexit situation too. People just don’t seem to be spending money as freely as they used to.”
Around 10 staff members are affected by the closure, but Simon said: “They’ve all been told but we’re going to have a staff meeting this week and see what they want to do moving forward. I know some are going to move over to the Solita brand.”
Solita, one of Manchester’s most beloved burger joints, closed its Prestwich branch earlier this year.
The Northern Quarter branch is currently listed for sale but continues to trade as normal, with no announcements made.
The news of El Taquero’s closure was posted on the restaurant’s Twitter account. The post read: “It is with great sadness we announce that we will be closing our doors forever after the 12th of Jan. We would like to take this opportunity to thank our customers who have supported our vision of bringing real Mexican food to Manchester. Muchas Gracias.” Twitter users have voiced their sympathies to the group, with one user saying: “Such a shame. Location wouldn’t help. Lovely food and staff.” Another wrote: “Terrible news. Best restaurant in Manchester and certainly the best Mexican food I’ve eaten outside of Mexico.”
El Taquero co-owner Simon Pogson
El Taquero is due to shut its doors next month
Solita continues to trade as normal