A new Mexican restaurant has popped up inside the Italian restaurant Barano (26 Broadway), utilizing an empty kitchen station, providing kitchen staff with consistent work, and feeding the neighborhood delicious tacos, burritos and more.
After New York City shutdown indoor dining for the second time in December, Barano owner and chef Albert Di Meglio didn’t want any of his kitchen staff to lose their jobs. “I wanted to do something to keep the guys on, keep us busy,” he said. “I wanted to do something different.” Thinking of all the fantastic Mexicano food his sous chef Pedro Castillo has cooked for him and the staff over the past twelve years, Di Meglio wanted to add those items to his menu.
“I wanted to give Pedro a platform,” Di Meglio said of opening Pedrito’s, his takeout-only Mexican restaurant within Barano. “Yes, it’s a business move, but why not make a move that supports the guys who support me.” Now, Barano is offering outdoor dining and takeout, as well as pickup and delivery from Pedrito’s, which occupies one station in Barano’s ever-busy kitchen. Pedrito’s serves an extensive variety of tacos, quesadillas, burritos, and platos principales, which include pozole and turkey wing mole.
If that sounds like a lot, that’s because it is, but that was always Di Meglio’s idea when opening Barano in 2018. “When we built Barano, I was ready for it to be busy,” Di Meglio said. With an abridged menu due to Covid, Pedrito’s had space to move-in, and cross-utilize inventory to create unique dishes like branzino tacos and dry-aged carne asada. Some specialty Mexican ingredients are brought in, but otherwise, food waste is minimal and food costs are low with two restaurants serving different cuisines operating in the same space.
While the pop-up has no scheduled end date, Di Meglio says that if the neighborhood supports it, “Pedrito’s will be around a long time.”
Pedrito’s is available to order via DoorDash for pickup or Seamless/Grubhub for delivery.