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Life & Work with Juan Acosta

Today we’d like to introduce you to Juan Acosta.

Alright, so thank you so much for sharing your story and insight with our readers. To kick things off, can you tell us a bit about how you got started?
Our story goes back to Mexico. My Grandfather Felix Acosta, born in 1912 at Salamanca Guanajuato Mexico was left to the care of his sister after his father Romulo Acosta was killed in front of him around the age of ten years old. A few years later, my Grandfather left his sister’s house because he was being mistreated. He decides to leave and become a man at an early age. In order to survive he learned the farmer trade, which was gathering cattle, slaughtering and cutting to sell to the local meat markets for big ranch in Salamanca Gto. He then married my Grandmother Antonia Acosta and had four children Luis Acosta, Cecilia Acosta, Maria Acosta and my Dad Romulo Acosta the youngest of the four children. My grandpa Felix learn how to cook Birria de Chivo/ Goat BIrria and for a long time that was his specialty. Back in the days in the farming industry, you would work with people from all over Mexico. Therefore they would learn from each other’s hometown cooking. One Day my grandpas friend that owed him a few bucks payed my grandpa with a Hog. My Grandfather made carnitas with the hogand sold out. Now his menu is Carnitas & Birria at the Mercado. My dad Romulo Acosta was 12 years old when my Grandpa started teaching him the Farmer trade. He would be woken up at 3 am hit the farm and begin work. He did not like it one bit as a kid and I can see why. What kid at 13 wants to be out in the cold, slaughtering and skinning hog. However, in our family’s philosophy of work that it’s better to teach a man how to work than to be left with a fortune. When my Dad Romulo Acosta come to the U.S he was a welder. However due to a freak accident. He lost his job and had no other option but to Continue what my Grandpa taught him. This was around 1973 by then he was married to my mother Inocencia Avendano and had four children. And the rest is history.

Would you say it’s been a smooth road, and if not what are some of the biggest challenges you’ve faced along the way?
For the same reason that my Families story is full of struggles and blessings, I made it my Goal to Hustle hard to0. My family has gone through so much. The passing of my sister Maria Antonia Acosta has been the staple of why I respect my parents so much because they did not give up. My bro living with lupus and my sister dealing with cirrhosis, Drug and alcohol addiction, My mom has endured everything, the least I can do for them is share their story. My Dad Romulo also suffered a stroke in 2018 while on vacation in Israel. I fell through a bad depression and spiraled out of control. I also lost my best friend the year after Omar Chaviar. I did not know how to deal with it at the time. But I’m here to tell the story.

Thanks for sharing that. So, maybe next you can tell us a bit more about your work?
I consider myself a taquero and like my Grandfather, My father and my older brother Luis Acosta I’ve learned to appreciate our craft of cooking carnitas and Birria. I barely made it out of high school, I tried college but that was not my calling and it felt awkward even going. So I took a leap of faith and followed through with the family business. What separates us from others is that we do what we do with Love and appreciation.

We’d love to hear about how you think about risk taking?
In the past four years, I had to deal with my dad getting a stroke, my best friend died from bone marrow cancer and my cousin died from an overdose and that’s been really hard for me.

Contact Info:

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  • Instagram: carnitaselmomo
  • Facebook: carnitaselmomo
  • Twitter: carnitaselmomo
  • Youtube: Carnitas El momo

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