“We make everyday food for everyday people,” said Miguel Lopez, owner and cook of Homi Mexican Restaurant at Victoria and University Avenue in St. Paul. “Mexico has international gourmet food but we use basic food like chili beans, rice and tortillas.”
Homi Mexican Restaurant, 864 University Avenue, is open 8 to 9 everyday. Call 651-222-0655. There’s a parking lot behind the restaurant – enter from Victoria, through the alley.
His wife, Hortencia Reyes, cooks starting in the morning and Lopez comes in the evening to cook after working a full time job.
Their restaurant is humble, clean and friendly. They serve all homemade dishes of chilaquiles, tamales, sopes, and other Mexican plates. Even their chips are homemade. “I learned to cook in Mexico from my mother and grandmother. And my wife learned from her mother.” said Lopez.
Lopez came to Minnesota in 1991. He had been doing farm work in California and the work was hard.
“The best part of having my business is not having to share my money with my employer,” said Lopez. They opened their restaurant October 10, 2010.
He suggested that if someone wants to start a business, to do the work that you like to do. “You cannot hire out the work for others to do,” said Lopez. You need to do the work yourself.”
“What is difficult about having your own business is the city and state regulations and they are expensive,” said Lopez.
Lopez learned to speak and write English without going to school. He said he had learned from other workers and that it was hard. “I knew when I came to America I needed to do two things, learn the rules and speak English.” Reyes says she cannot speak English well but she communicates well with her customers.
Coverage of issues and events that affect Central Corridor neighborhoods and communities is funded in part by a grant from Central Corridor Collaborative.