BOLIVIAN LLAMA PARTY
Alex, David, and Patrick Oropeza
44-14 48th Avenue Woodside, NY 11377
The Oropeza brothers brought "Bolivian-style food with our own twist of flavor in mind" to high-volume pop-ups and outdoor markets at Rockaway Beach and Brooklyn's Smorgasburg. Their current Woodside venue was originally not even a restaurant but a strategically-located kitchen home base.
By coincidence, the space was formerly a restaurant called Mi Bolivia where the Oropezas bought their salteñas growing up.
When the pandemic shut down their brick and mortar locations at Turnstile (at the Columbus Circle subway station) and Gotham West in downtown Brooklyn, they wondered: "Is this it? Is this the end?"
With the Woodside kitchen remaining, they built a front window and decided "Let's throw a Hail Mary out there" and gave it one more shot. That Hail Mary turned out to bring them much success and many fans.
FROM LAKE TITICACA, BOLIVIA
A batan is a word we use to describe a special rock that's been selected to do
some of the most important cooking jobs.
Your grandmother has one if she's Bolivian.
-- Patrick Oropeza