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Chingon Taqueria Opens In Leland

By Jessica Maurer, posted Nov 6, 2019

Leland’s Chingon Taqueria aims to bring the flavors of Mexico City to the area. 

Alex Zaragoza opened the fast-casual Mexican restaurant, at 1132 New Pointe Blvd. in Leland, with his sister Estrella Zaragoza late last month. The siblings said their plan is to bring Chingon Taqueria to Wilmington in the future, but for now they found a niche to fill in Leland.

“Leland has been growing for three years,” Alex Zaragoza said. “With the plans Brunswick County has for Leland, we just saw a lot of potential."

The restaurant features authentic Mexican fare such as fajitas, burritos, tacos found on the streets of Mexico City. Chingon Taqueria’s dishes are prepared with homemade corn tortillas and many feature al pastor (marinated pork) that is slow roasted on a vertical spit. Zaragoza said the slow cooking technique was brought to central Mexico by Lebanese immigrants.

“There are a lot of people traveling these days,” Alex Zaragoza said. “People are willing to try authentic Mexican food. They can tell the difference.”

Alex Zaragoza started working in the restaurant industry when he was 17 years old. He graduated from the International Culinary Center in New York in 2009. Chingon Taqueria is his latest concept.

He opened Si Senior in Porters Neck in 2016 and Papi’s Chicken, a Peruvian-style roast chicken restaurant in Leland, earlier this year with his brothers Eddie and Oscar Zaragoza. He has also worked as a chef/consultant for Myrtle Beach a restaurant chain, helping to design and open Taco Mundo Kitchen y Cantina in North Myrtle Beach.

In addition to al pastor, Chingon Taqueria’s menu also features whole fried fish, beef tongue and Micheladas, Mexican beer-based cocktails garnished with cucumbers and/or shrimp. Chingon Taqueria's menu also features six margaritas ranging from the house with fresh lemon and lime juice to prickly pear.

“We don’t offer the same menu,” Alex Zaragoza said. “We’re trying to be more fun and offer items that other restaurants aren’t offering.”

Chingon Taqueria is open from 11 a.m. to 10 p.m. seven days a week. 

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