Alex Stupak: Empellon Cocina Was ‘The Biggest Middle Finger’ To Naysayers
Alex Stupak, self-identified nihilist and chef-owner of Empellon Taqueria and its upscale little sister Empellon Cocina, notoriously falls under the “best celebrity chefs who just don’t give a fuck” umbrella.
In a recent post for First We Feast, he thoughtfully lays out his four requirements for restaurant expansion (he’s toying with the idea of a third space), admitting that he maybe, definitely jumped the gun on opening Cocina after Taqueria blew away critics who doubted what a “modernist” gringo pastry chef could do with Mexican food.
“When I opened Taqueria I was told many times, by several different people, that I was not going to succeed. So much so that once the restaurant just barely started to click I became compelled to extend the biggest middle finger I possibly could to all those naysayers. That middle finger was Cocina.”
What a loving descriptor. We can’t wait to nickname our second child “middle finger.”
But Alex’s rules aren’t meant to be universal: “Everyone’s journey is different and I have no fucking clue about what I’m doing.”
Which is exactly why he’s our favorite. Well, that, and delicious tacos. You can read his whole post here.