Dear Sí Señor Customers,
My name is Mandi, and I am the wife and partner of Sí Señor owner Hugo Crespo. I want to tell you all the story from my own perspective of Sí Señor.
In spring 2019, Hugo met me over my lunch hour and told me he had some big news to tell me. He had decided to quit his job in banking to open a Mexican taqueria. He was ready to make a change and live his passion.
Hugo had always talked about the dream of one day owning a restaurant that served his favourite dishes. Most of Hugo's childhood memories revolve around food - eating enchiladas at his abuela's hacienda in Mixquihuala with family members, having late comida corrida with friends on the streets of Mexico City. Hugo's mom used to own a restaurant in Mexico City and he remembers how happy the customers were and how hard she worked to keep it running. Hugo's first job was at a pizzeria in Mexico City, and he worked in and managed restaurants for many years in Mexico and the United States before we moved to Canada. Food and restaurants have always been Hugo's passion.
On March 23, 2019, Hugo opened the doors of Sí Señor Mexican Street Food.
As it is with most new restaurants, the first year of business at Sí Señor had many ups and downs. The chef quit unexpectedly, the floor got drenched and ruined, licenses took much longer than expected to go through. At the same time, spectacularly positive reviews started flowing in from happy customers. Even though Hugo was working long hours, it was amazing to see "life" trickle back into him with every glowing review that he received. When Sí Señor hit 100 positive reviews on Google with a score of 4.9 out of 5.0 in less than a year, he was in tears.
After being open only one year, the restaurant world was turned upside down (as all things were) by COVID-19. Hugo quickly set to work modifying Sí Señor - reducing hours, changing menu items, and adjusting to the new environment. Hugo and the wonderful ladies who work with him at the restaurant have put in so much effort to adapt while maintaining high quality food and service. But for a new local, family-owned restaurant, COVID-19 is hard.
If you've read this far, I have something to ask of you. Please spread the word about Sí Señor to your friends, family members and co-workers in person and on social media. Give gift certificates. Become a regular. Buy takeout as opposed to delivery if possible as the delivery companies take up to a 30% cut. Support Sí Señor and other local, family-owned businesses. Help Hugo and others keep their dreams alive and give back to the local Ottawa economy.
What I most want you to know about Sí Señor is that Hugo did not create it to sell food or to make a profit (to my utter dismay sometimes). Every order is a labour of love for Hugo - a love of serving customers, making people happy, and giving back in any way that he can. It is a way for Hugo to share his most cherished memories with the Ottawa community and to hopefully help spread some joy.
Every part of Sí Señor is a reflection of Hugo. His favourite colours are all over the building. His Mexican art and pottery collection lines its walls (he jokes that he had to open a restaurant just to have somewhere to display his overflowing collection!). The recipes are a mix of traditional flavours of his childhood and new creations that he invents. Sí Señor is vibrant, playful, creative, busy, colourful, energetic, flavourful, passionate, spontaneous, and caring - just like its owner.
I hope you fall in love with Sí Señor as much as I have!
Sí Señor's (and Hugo's) #1 fan,