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Meet Chris Gonzalez of Nacho Nachos in Southeast

Today we’d like to introduce you to Chris Gonzalez.

Chris, can you briefly walk us through your story – how you started and how you got to where you are today.
Nacho Nachos started as a God-given idea of combining two of Southeast Texas’s (we would venture to say ALL of Texas’s) favorite cuisines… Tex-Mex and Barbecue. Growing up with Hispanic biological parents and an old-school-country stepdad who loves smoked meats, there was plenty of combining both of these staples! My step-dad, Rick, loved getting brisket nachos from one of our favorite restaurants growing up, and I always told him we could do a better job; we could fry our own chips, make our own chile con queso, and utilize our leftover barbecue. This resulted in many meals that combined my mother’s fresh flour tortillas, gourmet enchiladas, Mexican rice, and many other dishes with all the flavoring of pit smoked meats. And as the idea grew, so did America’s love for food trucks and specialty items. In July of 2015, on a 9 hour flight to London, England for a wedding, I wrote the menu. I had made the decision that we would name all of our nachos after cities in Texas and they would correlate with each city in some capacity, whether comical or true.

This was the beginning and one of the most fun parts of the process. In September of the same year, I purchased the LLC for the company and in July of 2016, we opened a food truck for business for the first time. I was working full time in the oil and gas industry and the food truck was going to be a side hobby, something to fuel our creativity and test the waters with our ideas. It blossomed into something even more than we could imagine, and when my employer closed their doors in the Fall of 2016, we felt that maybe this “something” could be sustainable. In the Spring of 2017, I left the oilfield for good when a restaurant space fell in our laps and would become, in our minds, a self-sufficient commissary. Food truck popularity fueled our initial inspiration, but now, with the addition of so many fast-casual, build-your-own restaurants, we knew we could tweak our idea and create an environment and culture of our own.

In July of 2017, we opened our doors to Nacho Nachos Restaurant. Two years later, the food truck is as popular as ever, the restaurant seats customers daily, and with the addition of take home nachos bars, caterings have soared! We are blessed, thankful, grateful, and so honored to be able to serve God first, and all the family (and new extended family!) that He has blessed us with. What a wonderful ride.

Overall, has it been relatively smooth? If not, what were some of the struggles along the way?
I don’t think there is any entrepreneur or restaurant owner out there that would say that it has been a smooth road. Even to this day problems arise. It is like anything else you love, you have to work on it constantly and it can take every ounce of you to make it work, but you don’t mind, because you love it. We knew so little in the beginning, and still have much to learn, but the greatest times were the breakthroughs, and the experiences, and all the love we’ve shared along the way. Figuring out your product, how to package it and market it, how to keep your labor low, your costs down, and all the obligations along the way (like what kind of taxes and when to pay them!); it all is a heavy burden. But I wouldn’t trade it for the world. We have created something, and it is more than just food; it is a brand, a culture, a place for people to break bread and share in something we take for granted all too often. We are feeding people; both physically and spiritually. What an honor.

Please tell us about Nacho Nachos.
Our business is a fast casual restaurant serving craft nachos where guests get to build their own nachos. We started as, and still operate, a food truck where we cater, serve at special events, breweries, parties, and weddings. We make everything in house, including our chips that we fry, our queso, our toppings and sauces, and our pit smoked brisket and pulled pork. We are not limited to just nachos but are known for creating some of the most loaded nachos one can think of using meats ranging from tender fajita to shrimp, to Philly Cheesesteak! As a company, we are most proud of the culture we have established and the love we produce. Although we are a Christian, faith-based company, we welcome all and love to serve all.

A person needs a few things to survive in this life, some of which are food, water, and air. We get to participate in bringing people a couple of those along with what accommodates those the best… love. We start with love among our staff, put love into the food, and share it among our guests. We are able to help our community, assist non-profits, and feed countless thanks to our blessings and the culture it has created. I am not sure if there is one thing in particular that sets us apart from everyone else, in fact we have just ridden the wave of popularity and trends and borrowed ideas from others who have come before us; but I believe our place is a place of refuge, a place of unification, and a place for family.

If you had to go back in time and start over, would you have done anything differently?
I would have educated myself more. I would have been more persistent in getting things right. And I would have probably put someone in our corner who knows/knew more than me. I would have definitely been more frugal and tried to make less mistakes! Efficiency is key and I would have strove for that sooner. But as I said before, it has been a great ride and there are very few regrets. I love what I/we get to do everyday.

Pricing:

  • Nachos – $7-$13
  • Tacos – $2-$5
  • Drinks – $2
  • Sopapillas – $5

Contact Info:

Image Credit:
Darcy Gonzalez

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