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Pictured: Emma's Mex Grill family members - Jose Mendieta, Sr. (center), Jose Mendieta, Jr. (right), Luis Mendieta (left)
Emma’s Mex Grill family members – Jose Mendieta, Sr. (center), Jose Mendieta, Jr. (right), Luis Mendieta (left)

Fourth generation restaurateur Jose Mendieta, Jr. dishes about family-owned Emma’s Mex Grill moving to its new location at 5096 Broadway Street in Pearland and the evolution of the family business.  Doubling in size to 7,000 square feet, the new space remains true to the family’s passion of serving authentic food and an array of top-shelf agave spirits.

The Mendieta family has a long history in Pearland starting with Jose Mendieta, Sr. opening Mely’s restaurant in 1989.  The restaurant remained a popular staple in Pearland until 2008.  After a brief hiatus, Mendieta Sr. was inspired to open Emma’s Mex Grill named in honor of his mother-in-law who passed away the same year of the restaurant opening in 2009.

Jose Mendieta, Jr. became an integral part of the family business the same year and discovered he had his father’s passion for collecting tequila and sharing his knowledge of agave spirits.

Spearheading the restaurant’s direction today, Mendieta, Jr. explains, “In addition to everything we created at the original Emma’s, visitors will find a few surprises at our new location.”

Unique to Pearland, Emma’s Mex Grill now offers tequila and cocktails on tap with all ingredients made fresh daily at the bar.  Doubled in size, the bar area includes additional seating and high top tables that are perfect for guests looking for a quick bite paired with a cocktail.

Tequila lockers are showcased at the heart of the bar area and are a favorite with loyal customers with half already leased.  The bar area alone will be home to future exclusive, events highlighting “meet the maker” concepts featuring regional talent.

Mendieta, Jr. says “I’m excited we’ll be able to offer more casual events to showcase our ties to the tequila industry and our regional partners.  We’ll add informal events to our calendar with more frequency and continue to offer our more elaborate, signature tequila tasting dinners and exclusive dinners held throughout the year.”

Other highlights of the new open-concept design include more seating with added booths, an expanded main dining space for the tequila tasting dinners and a kitchen space that serves as a commissary.

The expanded kitchen is twice the size of the original location and accommodates space for a pastry chef to create delicacies for the bakery.  Guests will be able to enjoy pastries for dine-in seating and takeout.  The new kitchen also helps to expand the catering ability of Emma’s Mex Grill.

Emmas-Detail-DSC09437“We’re very excited about the relocation and expansion of Emma’s Mex Grill with its new culinary and cocktail offerings,” says Kim Sinistore, executive director of Pearland Convention & Visitors Bureau.  “This expansion adds to the growing popularity of Pearland’s locally owned restaurants.”

Finishing touches are still in the works at the new location.  After a soft opening, Emma’s Mex Grill will celebrate their official opening at the 5096 Broadway Street location in early May.