Owners: Brothers Chuy Esquivel and Gabriel Sosa
Locations: A new location at 103 Cherokee Blvd., which opened in July 2018, joins the one at 811 Market St., opened in 2014.
Why open a new location in North Chattanooga?
"I've always really liked the North Shore," said Esquivel, adding that he plans to move to the area soon since it's close to both restaurants.
Do you get the same type of customer in both locations?
Esquivel said the downtown restaurant gets more of a lunch crowd, drawing workers from big employers such as TVA and EPB as well as college kids from UTC. The Cherokee Boulevard location is busier at dinnertime and the crowd is more family-oriented. He's also noticed that the customers in North Chattanooga are more into beer, and they're more likely to order premium tequila in their margaritas. Although the two restaurants are fairly close to each other, the new location hasn't affected his downtown business, he said.
What sets you apart?
According to Esquivel, the selection of Mexican drafts at the Cherokee Boulevard location (formerly The Casual Pint) is one of the largest around — if not the largest — with 23 taps. "We have a killer happy hour," he added. Held Monday-Friday from 2-6 p.m. at both locations, happy hour specials include $2 drafts and $2.95 house margaritas. The downtown location hosts trivia on Thursdays and salsa dancing on Saturdays. Both restaurants boast large menus, including a vegan menu.
What's your favorite Mexiville dish?
"That's like asking to pick a favorite child," Esquivel said, though he admitted that his top choice is the pineapple fajitas, featuring chicken, steak, shrimp, peppers, onions and diced pineapple.
Who did the art?
The Star Wars-themed art above the booths is by Hixson artist John Cross, and customers frequently pose for selfies with Darth Vader, said Esquivel. His favorite piece, located to the right of the bar, is by Dalton, Ga., artist Marco Martinez.
Find out more: Call the downtown location at 805-7444 or the North Chattanooga location at 498-5375, or visit mexivilletn.com.