143 Street Tacos

143 Street Tacos is a family owned restaurant which started in 2014 as a food truck in Sierra Vista Arizona.


Cultural Narrative: 

Their cooking and Mexican food style is based on family recipes originating in Cananea, Sonora, Mexico. Marcelo immigrated to the USA in 1991, and learned how to speak English through Sesame Street, of which their logo pays homage to. After three years with the taco truck, and frequently running out to food due to lack of space to cook they moved the restaurant into a permanent location in early 2017. The idea of food establishment wasn’t something they pursued during the first part of their marriage, however Marcelo often joked with his wife about how her salsa was so good they should sell it. But when they were given the chance to own a food truck they jumped on the offer they were soon fixing the truck up as they could pay for it through food sales.

They originally thought of starting the business in the Tucson area, however they soon discovered Tucson had quite a few Mexican food establishments. So they looked to Sierra Vista, the area Marcelo grew up in and where his parents still lived. A culturally diverse, yet small, military town Sierra Vista boasts German, Korean, Japanese, Vietnamese and other cultural food establishments which are locally and family owned. However there were relatively limited Mexican styles of cuisine in the area given its proximity to Mexico. The community welcomed them with open arms and they reciprocated. They support local soccer teams when they can – but perhaps the largest example of the unique way food can forge bonds within a community was the outpouring of support they were given when they suffered a death in the family. Customers came in to help clean, chop vegetables and assisted with keeping the restaurant running. This impacted their own impressions of what how food can affect a community and how the community can embrace food establishments they love.

They’ve also been embraced on a city level as well having won the Sierra Vista Business of the Month in March of 2017. Most recently they were awarded first place in the Sierra Vista Herald Review “Best of the Vista” in Lunch, Food Trucks, and Mexican Restaurant categories, and second place for Fast Food, all in 2018. One of their signature meats is chicken grilled over a mesquite fire, creating a delicious blend of smokiness and spice. They are currently looking to move to another location that suits the establishments growing needs.