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The “Mestico Mission”



Our Mission at Mestico is to create innovative cuisine that surpasses your expectations.  We use unique combinations of fresh ingredients and spices that fuse together for an amazing experience. 

Our influences capture the true essence of Latin comfort food infused with notes of African American Soul. 


"Taste the Origin of Soul"



What is Mestico [Mes'tiso]?



Mestico is a restaurant startup concept  that opened its doors in a nontraditional manner. Mestico has taken its food to the streets of Los Angeles, Malibu, Orange County and the Inland Empire in the forms of non-profit events, Major Cultural festivals, Private events, Catering and Popup Dining Experiences.  Our motto is “Give the People What They Want”!!


The "Mestico Experience"



We will create a custom menu based on the information that you provide on our questionnaire.  You will always have an opportunity to discuss your menu options with Chef Darrell personally, via email or over the phone.  We want you to explore all of the possibilities of our services based on your taste and budget.  We take pride in our excellent customer service.  Our goal is to make sure you and your guests experience Mestico! 



African-American cuisine, often referred to as soul food, originated during the slave era. Slaves would often have to cook with the sparse ingredients their owners left behind. Contemporary African-American cuisine takes inspiration from many slave recipes and Southern cuisine.


Mexican cuisine is primarily a fusion of indigenous Mesoamerican cooking with European, especially Spanish elements added. The basic staples remain native foods such as corn, beans and chili peppers.


Brazilian cuisine was developed from indigenous, European, and African influences. It varies greatly by region, reflecting the country's mix of native and immigrant populations, and its continental size as well. This has created a national cuisine marked by the preservation of regional differences.


Puerto Rican cuisine has its roots in the cooking traditions and practices of Europe, Africa and the Amerindian Taínos. In the latter part of the 19th century, the cuisine of Puerto Rico was greatly influenced by the United States in the ingredients used in its preparation.


Cuban cuisine is a fusion of Spanish, African, and Caribbean cuisine. Cuban recipes share spices and techniques with Spanish and African cooking, with some Caribbean influence in spice and flavor. This results in a unique, interesting and flavorful blend of the several different cultural influences, with strong similarities with the cuisine of the neighboring Dominican Republic and Puerto Rico.



Who is behind this unique idea?

Pittsburgh native, Chef Darrell Gillcrese was born in the Steel City, as showcased by his signature Pittsburgh Pirates hat worn at every event. Inspired at a young age by his mother’s love of cooking, Chef Darrell cooked alongside his mother and was crowned her signature "taster”.  With the responsibility of ensuring that his mothers recipes were as good as Grandma Eulas’, he was sure to become a critic of good food.  


With soulful roots and early influences of his Puerto Rican Aunts cuisine, Chef Darrell, began experimenting with the elements of both Afro and Latin flavors.  Sharpening his skills, he worked in various restaurants holding many different positions absorbing every facet of the restaurant industry.  Making a dramatic life change he moved to Los Angeles, California to pursue his artistic abilities.  


Upon his arrival he became intrigued with the latin and southern cultures of the restaurants in the city, Chef Darrell found himself wanting more.  He began searching for the new “wow” factor traveling extensively through South America and the Caribbean. The unique fusion of these traditional spices, staple ingredients and flavors now make up-MESTICO!


Chef Darrell’s desire to excite the palate of his clients is his daily inspiration. He truly would like to be the first to introduce you to the fusion of flavors that is Afro Latin Cuisine.


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