So, Who are we?
Back in 2011, Mike Pavone was working as a chef in a well-known downtown Restaurant and Jose Abarca had recently opened a small Mexican shop inside a gas station near Mike’s home.
Before Mike went to work, he would stop by Jose’s shop to eat a burrito or taco. One day, Jose suggested Mike that he could work with him if he wanted. Mike said he would, and that’s how this friendship started!
Together, in 2012, we opened a Mexican restaurant in Penfield called Itacate, after one year, once the restaurant was pretty well stablished, Mike decided to explore new culinary horizons and moved to California. While working in some popular restaurants in the Venice Beach area, Mike fell in love with the numerous “taquerias” that could be found in the area, which offered all kind of tacos and Mexican dishes, some traditional Mexican, while others were more reflective of the mix of the various cultures one can find in LA.
When Mike returned to the Rochester area in 2016, we started talking about opening a taqueria, he asked Lulu Abarca (Jose’s wife) if it was ok to name the restaurant after her, she agreed and after a long journey looking for the right location and menu, we opened Lulu’s doors in the spring of 2018.
At first glance, our menu looks Mexican: tacos, burritos, tostada, as well as nachos. But look closer and you’ll spot creative items like Kyle’s Nashville taco and the very popular fried chicken sandwich.
We’re not necessarily a Mexican place, it is food we grew up with. It is food from Mexico influenced by ingredient and recipes we have got to like in our culinary journey.
We also have a very nice selection of Tequila and Mezcal that complement our menu offerings.
We hope you like our restaurant. It is the culmination of a friendship between two very unlikely characters!